Collaborate File and Recording Storage FAQ

Collaborate File and Recording Storage FAQ

Date Published: Jan 12,2022 Category: Product:Web_Conferencing; Version:Web_Conferencing   Article No.: 000072294

Product: Blackboard Collaborate

Document Type: User Documentation

Document Summary: This FAQ answers questions about Collaborate file and recording storage.

Can you record Collaborate sessions?

Yes, Collaborate can record an MP4 video of your session. The following content is available in a Collaborate recording:

  • Room Audio
  • Content Sharing/Whiteboard OR Active Speaker Video if no content sharing is occurring.
  • Captioning, only one track will be shown in the recording if there are multiple tracks.
  • Chat

Recordings will be available shortly after the session is completed.

Recordings will be emailed to the session owner and invited moderators. If the Blackboard Collaborate session was created in any CMS/LMS including Moodle and Blackboard Learn, no recording email will be sent. Instructors and students can securely access the recording in the CMS/LMS course.

For complete instructions on how to record your Collaborate please review our recording documentation on

Where is my content (persistent content uploads and recordings) stored?

Persistent content uploads, converted files and MP4 recordings are stored in Amazon's S3 service by region. Below is a table showing the geography of the stored data.

RegionAWS Zone
USUS-East (Virginia)
AUPersistent Content files: Sydney
MP4 Recordings: Ireland (created before Nov. 24th, 2018) / Sydney (created after Nov. 24th, 2018)
CAPersistent Content files: Montreal
MP4 Recordings: Ireland (created before Nov. 24th, 2018) / Montreal (created after Nov. 24th, 2018)

AU and CA hosted client's Collaborate recordings created after November 24th, 2018 will be hosted on AWS Sydney and AWS Montreal. AU and CA Collaborate recordings created before November 24th, 2018 will continue to be hosted on AWS Ireland. Please see KBA 000049861 for more details.

Amazon S3 uses Amazon CloudFront to cache and quickly serve up files to clients depending on their geo location. Those files can be cached for a period of time (no less than 24 hours) on the CloudFront edge server. Clients hosted on AWS Ireland should note that depending on a requesting user's location, the file can possibly be cached on a United States hosted Amazon CloudFront edge servers. 

Important Note:  Persistent content uploads and Recordings for the institution can be disabled by opening a support case in Behind the Blackboard and requesting these features be disabled if your institution cannot allow data to be stored in Ireland or use Amazon CloudFront.

Do I need to configure my firewall to view recordings?

Most institutions will freely allow access to the Amazon AWS service. If there are issues accessing recordings, we highly recommend that institutions visit our Firewall and Network page for further information. 

What is captured in my Collaborate recordings?

The following content is available in a Collaborate recording:

  • Room Audio
  • Content Sharing/Whiteboard OR Active Speaker Video if no content sharing is occurring.
  • Captioning, only one track will be shown in the recording if there are multiple tracks.
  • Chat 

How do I create multiple recordings in my Collaborate session?

Pressing the recording start/stop will produce a single recording, pressing start again during a session will start a NEW recording.

How long does it take before I or someone else can view the recordings?

Your recording should be available for viewing within minutes of completing the recording for both you and anyone else that needs to view it. 

Can I download my Collaborate recordings?

Collaborate Scheduler and Learning Tools Interoperability® (LTI) users can download recordings from the Collaborate Scheduler interface as well as on the recording play back page. To allow session recording downloads from the recording play back page, the session owner must allow session recording downloads in the Session Settings.

Please Note: Collaborate sessions created in Moodle using SOAP API will not have the download option in the recording playback page at this time.

Can I delete my recordings?

Yes, you will be able to delete recordings in the Collaborate Scheduler.

If an instructor deletes a Collaborate recording from within their Blackboard course, does that effectively remove the .mp4 from counting towards the institutions Collaborate recording storage quota?

Yes. The recording, although deleted from the Collaborate Scheduler still exists on the AWS servers in case recovery is necessary. However, it does not count against the storage quota.

Can recordings be deleted in bulk?

Yes, recordings can be bulk deleted. For more details on how to submit a bulk deletion request, please refer to the Collaborate Recording Bulk Deletion Policy.

Do I get an email notification when my recording is ready?

Yes, the session owner will get an email that contains a link to the recording. Invited Moderators will also receive a recording email. Participant and Presenter invitees will not receive an email, the session owner will have to give this link to users they wish to share the recording with. No CMS/LMS integration users will receive an email.

Can I track who has viewed the MP4?

No, at this time you cannot track who viewed the MP4.

Can I password protect a recording?

No, at this time you cannot password protect your recordings.

What are my Collaborate recording storage limits?

Storage limits vary depending on license type and entitlement level contracted--the minimum Collaborate storage allotment included for any license type is 500 GB, though your contract may specify a larger storage entitlement. Deleted recordings are not included in the assessment of storage use. Different Collaborate licensing models exist, ​consult with your Account Executive if you have questions about your current license ​type​ Collaborate SAAS Storage Specifications

Is there a MP4 Viewing Limit?

No, endless MP4 views are allowed.

Are live captions available in my recording?

Live captions are inserted into your MP4's, please be aware of the following limitations: 

  • Only one of the four captioning tracks are displayed in the streaming version, and for now, no tracks will be shown for mobile users.

Why are my chat messages not recorded in my recording?

As of July 2017, Chat messages should be in all recordings that used chat in the live session.

Will Collaborate Recordings be available through my LMS?

Recordings will be available in Blackboard Learn and through any CMS/LMS's that use our Collaborate LTI Tool. Please note that recordings created in the LMS will NOT send an email to the instructor when the recording is ready. Please access the recording in your LMS course.

How long are my recordings stored?

At this time there is no limit on the amount of time a Collaborate recording is stored.

Can I edit my recordings to remove parts or shorten the length?

At this time there is no option to edit the Collaborate recording that is stored online. You may wish to download the recording and edit it however with a 3rd party video editing software. To do this make sure you have allowed recording downloads. This can be done from the session settings.

If I delete a session a recording was created in, will the recording be deleted with it?

Deleting a session will not delete it's recordings. However, DO NOT delete a session prior to your recording posting. This could prevent it from becoming available.


If an LMS course is deleted, are the Collaborate Recordings deleted and no longer counted against my Collaborate Storage?

If an LMS course gets deleted, the Collaborate Recordings do not get deleted. Therefore the Collaborate Recording storage remains the same.

Can recordings be restored after they are marked as deleted?

Yes, recordings can be restored for up to 30 days after being marked as deleted by a user. After 30 days, recordings marked as deleted will get fully wiped (“hard delete”) from our servers (including chat, captions, etc …) and can no longer be restored. Collaborate Administrators can find more information about our recording deletion policy here.