If Zoom won’t let you share your screen when conducting an online video call, it can negatively affect your virtual meeting, or conference call, specifically if it is within your organization.
The host of the Zoom video, whether that’s you or another participant, need to enable the screen sharing feature under the security settings, for other members of the call to have the function available to them.
Without the correct permissions set on your device, your display may appear as a black screen when you try to share your screen.
With this easy to follow guide, you will understand what may be causing your Zoom app to not screen share, as well as learn six simple steps that will help fix this issue, so you can get back to showing your peers what is on your device’s display.
Why can’t I share my screen on Zoom?
Zoom won’t share your screen with other participants in the video call if the microphone and camera settings have been misconfigured on the app and device. The ‘sharing screen’ feature needs to be switched on, and permissions enabled for Zoom to successfully ‘mirror’ the image on your screen.
Other possible reasons why the screen sharing function is not working could be;
Reason 1. Background apps running
Multiple systems running in the background on the device you are using to launch Zoom, can interfere with the app gaining access to your camera, specifically if the programs have an audio or video feature.
These running processes will also decrease the amount of bandwidth Zoom receives, slowing the app down and potentially disabling certain features from working.
Reason 2. Permissions disabled
Not only do the permission settings on your device need to be enabled to allow Zoom to gain access to your camera, but they also need to be turned on within the app as well.
If the host of the video call has not allowed participants to share their screen, no one will be able to until they change the security settings within the live video.
Reason 3. Zoom internet connection unstable
If Zoom is not connected to a stable network connection, certain features on the app will fail.
Zoom requires an internet speed of at least 10Mbps to 25Mbps to work properly.
What upload speed is needed for Zoom screen sharing?
A minimum of 3Mbps is needed to successfully screen share.
Reason 4. Faulty software files
If the Zoom software currently installed on your device has become corrupted, this will interfere with certain features.
Over time, application files can become contaminated from general use, or opening a program over a suspicious network.
An outdated Zoom app will also create faulty files if the older version is experiencing issues with its software.
Why won’t my Mac let me share my screen on Zoom?
It has been recognised specifically on Mac computers, that the Zoom app will not share its screen when there is a second monitor involved. For the video conferencing tool to work successfully on your Mac, you need to enable the ‘System-Wide Screen Sharing Service’
Besides the standard settings that are required on Mac (and Windows) for one screen, if you want your image to be displayed on a second screen, you will need to make sure the option has been enabled.
The screen sharing feature will not work on your Mac if you have ‘Remote Management’ switched on, as these two settings will not work coherently.
Step 1. Access ‘System Preferences’
Step 2. Click on ‘Sharing’
Step 3. Select ‘Screen Sharing’
Step 4. Deselect ‘Remote Management’
Screen sharing should now work on your Mac with an additional display.
How do I enable screen sharing in Zoom?
The first thing to do to make sure Zoom can screen share is to check that the settings on your device and app have been configured correctly. This will include enabling permissions and accessing the internal settings on Zoom to confirm the feature has been enabled for when you are participating in a video conference. If you are not the host of the meeting, they will need to change the security settings on the group video.
Fix 1. Enable settings on Zoom
Make sure your Zoom app is set to allow screen sharing to take place;
Step 1. Open Zoom and click on the ‘Settings’ icon
Step 2. From the left-hand panel, select ‘Share Screen’
Step 3. Under each section, make sure your desired settings have been ticked
It is recommended to decrease your Zoom’s ‘frames per second’ as this will lower the amount of bandwidth required to mirror your display to the attendees in the conference call;
Fix 2. How to change Zoom frame rate
Step 1. Access the ‘Share Screen’ tab under settings
Step 2. Tick ‘Enable the remote control of all applications’
Step 3. Select ‘Advanced’ at the bottom
Step 4. Change ‘Limit your screen to _ frames per second’ to be less than ten (eight is recommended)
Save these changes and check to see if your image appears as a black display when you launch screen sharing.
Fix 3. Close background apps
You should not have multiple apps running in the background of your device (mobile or PC) when using Zoom.
These programs will decrease the amount of bandwidth the video app will receive, and block access to the camera or audio feature.
CTRL ◊ ALT ◊ DEL > Task Manager > Highlight and ‘End Task’ on all unnecessary programs
Slide up on Home Screen > Take previews of apps > Move the preview upwards to close them
‘Settings > Apps > Select application > Force Stop’
Once you have closed all programs, restart your device and log back into Zoom.
Fix 4. Check permission settings
If Zoom does not have permission to access the camera on your device, it will not be possible to screen share.
Step 1. Access the Apple menu and click on ‘System Preferences’
Step 2. Choose ‘Security and Privacy’ and get into the ‘Privacy’ tab
Step 3. Find ‘Screen Recording’ and press the ‘Lock’ icon
Step 4. Make sure Zoom has been ticked
Step 1. Open the ‘Settings’ menu and click on ‘Apps’
Step 2. Select ‘Apps and Features’
Step 3. Find Zoom and press the three dots
Step 4. Choose ‘Advanced Options’
Step 5. Make sure the permissions have been enabled
Note, reboot your device before logging back into Zoom.
(Did you know, the founder of Zoom, Eric Yuan, adds a personal touch by responding directly to customers emails.)
Fix 5. Update Zoom app
Updating your Zoom app not only upgrades the version to improve its performance but also gets rid of any corrupted files that may currently be stored on your device.
Step 1. Select your profile picture on the main screen
Step 2. From the drop-down menu select ‘Check for Updates’
Step 3. Zoom will automatically check if a newer version is available to download
If an upgrade is possible, allow Zoom to complete the installation.
Fix 6. Check internet connection
Check your internet speed to make sure Zoom is being supplied with an adequate amount of bandwidth.
If your network service provider has been experiencing intermittent issues, causing your router to disconnect and reconnect frequently, this will interfere with Zoom successfully processing the screen sharing feature.
Turn Wifi off > Unplug > Wait a few minutes > Plug it back in > Switch router on
Once your internet reconnects, relaunch Zoom and try screen sharing.
How to enable screen sharing as host on Zoom
If you are the host of a video conference call on Zoom, and the other participants are unable to share their screen, you will need to enable the screen sharing setting under the security settings.
Step 1. In your Zoom meeting click on the ‘Security’ tab
Step 2. From ‘Allow Participants’ select ‘Share Screen’
Everyone else should be able to display their screen.
Zoom has become one of the most used apps for video communication across the globe, making the screen sharing function vital when conducting virtual meetings and conference calls.
With this guide, we hope you were able to fix your Zoom from not letting you share your screen with other participants, and that you now know what to do to help prevent this issue from occurring again in the future.