Plug-ins not working in Google Chrome and Firefox

Blackboard is compatible with a number of internet browsers and operating systems.

The Technology Enhanced Learning team usually recommend using the Google Chrome browser to access Blackboard, for the most trouble-free experience.

However as of 1st September 2015 Google discontinued support for a number of browser plug-ins, and this means that specific types of video file and two infrequently used tools in Blackboard no longer work when using Chrome.

N.B. A number of these issues apply also to the Microsoft Edge browser, and to Mozilla Firefox from version 52 onwards (released March 2017).

When opening some pages within Blackboard you will see a message such as this

Chrome unsupported plug-in message

Please note, for most Blackboard users, most of the time, Chrome still provides a good experience. However you will need to switch to another browser (e.g. Internet Explorer or Safari) to use the following:

QuickTime video files

Update for staff: new HTML5 tools in Blackboard support audio and video playback in all browsers

MP4 Video files uploaded to Blackboard before the most recent system upgrade will not play in Chrome or Firefox, and will display as shown below.

MP4 file unsupported

Please note that there is a link to download the file, and play it on your computer using whichever media player you have installed.

The same message appears for Windows Movie Player (WMV files).

Videos embedded from services such as YouTube and Vimeo are unaffected by the changes, and will continue to play using Chrome and Firefox.


You will no longer be able to use the Virtual Classroom in Chrome or Firefox, or to upload multiple files to the Blackboard Fileshare (Content Collection) using drag and drop.


Other plug-ins which will not now work in Chrome or Firefox include Adobe Shockwave and Microsoft Silverlight, although users are less likely to encounter these within Blackboard.