Presenting in Zoom

This article details the basics of presenting and screen sharing in Zoom, including using the chat during a meeting.

Presenting in Zoom

This article details the basics of presenting and screen sharing in Zoom. It contains the following:

Note: "On Mac OS 10.15 Catalina, you need to allow Zoom access to Screen Recording to share your screen. You can do this in your System Preferences > Security & Privacy > Privacy > Screen Recording. Check the option for" (Source)


Screen Sharing in Zoom

  1. The host and participants can share their screen by clicking Share in the meeting controls.

    toolbar in Zoom with share screen button highlighted

  2. Choose the screen you want to share. You can choose an application open on your computer, a web browser window, the desktop, a whiteboard, or an iPhone/iPad.

    Share screen options with whiteboard highlighted
  3. (Optional) Enable these features:
    1. Check Share Computer Sound to any sound played by your computer shared in the meeting.
    2. Check Optimize for full-screen video clip if you will be sharing a video in full-screen mode. Do not check this otherwise, as it could make the shared screen blurry.
  4. Click Share.

Sharing a Portion of the Screen

  1. Click Share Screen.

  2. Select the "Advanced" tab at the top of the window.

  3. Click Portion of Screen.

    Zoom advanced screensharing options with sharing a portion of your screen highlighted

  4. A green box will appear, to drag over the part of the screen you would like to share. Screen sharing will pause and the the box will turn orange as you drag it to a new location.
    Zoom website example of sharing your screen

Share Screen Menu

When you start sharing your screen, the meeting controls will move to the top of the screen. You can click and drag this to another location on the screen if you would like.

share screen menu that is on your screen when sharing in Zoom

The functions of these controls are described in the image above from left to right. You can:

  • Mute/Unmute: Mute and unmute your microphone.
  • Start Video: Start and stop your video.
  • Security: View options on how to manage the security of your meeting. See image below.
    Security button on Zoom with options seen in dropdown
  • Participants: View and manage the participants (if you are the host)
  • Chat: View and manage the chat.
  • New Share: Start a new screen share. You will be prompted to choose which screen you want to share again.
  • Pause Share: Pause your shared screen
  • Annotate: Display tools to annotate your screen
  • More: Access a menu of less commonly used options, shown in the image below. 

More button on Zoom and the dropdown menu

Obstructed Window While Screen-Sharing

Other participants may report seeing grey boxes obscuring the screen while you are screen sharing. These grey boxes are the windows for your Zoom controls and chat. This can be fixed by changing your screen sharing settings. Follow these steps to fix the problem:

  1. Click the green New Share button in the control panel.
    Zoom toolbar
  2. In the window that pops up, deselect Optimize for sharing video.

    Window selection pop-up
  3. Select the window you want to share, and click Share in the lower right hand corner.

For more information about screen sharing, please see this Zoom "Sharing Your Screen, Content, or Second Camera" documentation.

Sharing a Pre-Recorded Video

Zoom allows participants to share video with audio to participants. 

  1. Click Share in the meeting controls.
  2. Select the video from the available screens. We suggest having the video open in a separate tab, to make it easier to find.
  3. Select Optimize for Full-Screen Video Clip from the bottom of the "Share" window. This should automatically select Share Computer Sound as well. If it doesn't, select that option as well.
  4. Click Share.

    Youtube video highlighted indicating the share button

  5. The first time you use this feature, a new box will pop up on your screen. You will need to enter an administrator user name and password to use the feature.

    Box that appears when needing to grant access for screensharing and sound sharing

  6. After the administrator credentials have been entered, stop sharing your screen, refresh the video browser, and repeat steps 1-4. Audio will now be available to your participants. Due to this extra refreshing requirement, we suggest you set this up ahead of the meeting time. This can be done in the iSchool Moodle Sandbox page or iSchool Demo Course Site Moodle page. Please contact the Help Desk if you need any assistance in this process. 

Sharing a PowerPoint

By default, your PowerPoint presentation will take up your whole screen, hiding the "Chat" and "Manage Participants" controls. Follow these instructions to contain your presentation in a browser window, rather than on a full screen.

  1. Open the PowerPoint you want to present.
  2. Click Slide Show in the top menu toolbar, then click Set Up Slide Show.

    slideshow button that says Set Up Slideshow
  3. Under "Show type," select Browsed by an individual (window) and click OK.

    Set Up Show settings
  4. Open your presentation by opening the "Slide Show" tab, then click Play from Start or Play from Current Slide.

    Play Slideshow and Start Slideshow from Current Slide buttons
    Your presentation will display in a window.

    Example slideshow that says Sharing a PowerPoint iSchool Help Desk

  5. Start or join the Zoom meeting you are presenting in. 
  6. Click Share Screen in the meeting controls.
  7. Select the PowerPoint window and click Share.

For more information about screen sharing a PowerPoint, please see this Zoom "Screen Sharing a PowerPoint Presentation" documentation


The chat function allows you to send messages to other users in a meeting. You can send messages to the entire group or to an individual. The host can choose to decide who participants chat with or disable chat entirely. The chat can be saved manually or automatically.

Accessing the Chat

  1. Click Chat in the meeting controls.

    Toolbar in Zoom with Chat button highlighted
  2. This will open the chat window on the right of the meeting display. You can type a message to send to the entire group ("Everyone") or click the drop-down arrow next to "To:if you want to send a message to a specific person. 

    Chat pop-upmenu to select who to send messages to
  3. When new chat messages are sent to you or everyone, a preview of the message will appear and "Chat" button on your host controls toolbar will flash orange.

While Screen Sharing

  1. To open the chat while screen sharing, click More in the meeting controls and select "Chat."

    Menu from the dots on the right of the controls during screen sharing where chat is located
  2. A floating chat window will appear.
  3. If you receive chat messages while screen sharing, the "More" button will flash orange.

Chat Settings

To change the chat settings:

  1. Click Chat in the meeting controls.
  2. Click the three dots to display in-meeting chat settings.
     Menu brought up by selecting the three dots above the chat box in the chat pop-up
  3. You can access the following options: 
    1. Save chat: Saves the chat as a file
    2. Allow attendees to chat with:
      1. No one: Disables chat
      2. Host only: Only the host can send messages to everyone. Participants can still send private messages to the host
      3. Everyone publicly: Participants can only send public messages, but can still send private messages to the host
      4. Everyone publicly and privately: Participants can send public or private messages to anyone


For more information about chat, please see this Zoom "Using In-Meeting Chat" documentation.

KeywordsZoom, Zoom settings, Zoom chat, chat, screen share, present, video share, grey boxes, obstructed window   Doc ID124862
OwnerKiran W.GroupSchool of Information Sciences
Created2023-03-15 10:03:13Updated2023-04-25 09:38:26
SitesUniversity of Illinois School of Information Sciences
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