Text tool for whiteboard #1346

bigbluebutton-issue-import opened this Issue Aug 12, 2015 · 28 comments


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3 participants


Originally reported on Google Code with ID 591

What is the feature?

The feature is a text function for the whiteboard. Several users asked about this feature
and it would make it easier to write on the whiteboard, instead of drawing on it.

Reported by seb.sschneider on 2010-07-29 17:40:15


Reported by Me.Snap on 2010-09-29 02:37:42

  • Labels added: Priority-Low, Component-Client
  • Labels removed: Priority-Medium

I would want to support this demand!

I take part of "Informatici Senza Frontiere" (www.informaticisenzafrontiere.org), an
italian volunteers organization that offers free informatic assistance.

We are involved in a project to allow to a sick child to follow the scholastic lessons
from house. To provide the web participation we are using a webconference tool.

In this project the shared whitebord component is obviously crucial: it's necessary
for a full lessons involvement.

We are really interested to adopt BBB as webconference platform for the project (we
are currently using a commercial product but an open source sw is dramatically more
according with our mission). Unfortunately the absence of the text tool makes virtually
unusable the whiteboard: it's almost impossible to write text using the mouse...

Thanks for your job,

Reported by riccardo.ruffilli on 2010-11-18 17:10:29

You can try using this in the meantime.

Reported by ritzalam on 2010-11-18 17:48:39

sure, we are using exatly that model, at the moment.
but not for text writing: it's really too hard for an extensive use of a
whiteboard (just a bit better then using a mouse).
teachers are using the pen for draws and formulas, but for texts are still
using the text tool...

Reported by riccardo.ruffilli on 2010-11-18 18:56:25

Please! Add this feature! We use BBB for teaching remotely to impaired children, but
we need this feature urgently! If you can, increase its priority! Thanks!

Reported by rodenic on 2010-11-19 11:18:42

I also think this feature is extremely useful and would allow a much better usage of
the whiteboard component. Please increase its priority, I am looking forward to using
it in a future version of BBB.

Reported by flippolis on 2010-11-19 11:26:48

BBB it's a great product,  but I think that this feature is extremely necessary!
Please include that as soon as possible!

Reported by ciccioweb82 on 2010-11-19 11:48:58

[I'm just editing Denis's comment to reduce the detection from SPAM Bots -- FFD]

Thanks for the comments everybody. Having gotten this many similar comments in a day
suggests a coordinated effort by a small group of people to ramp up support for this
feature. While I see the value in this feature, the development team has it's own priorities.
If you'd really like to see this feature in the next version of bbb, you can either:
1. Get your programming on and submit a patch
2. Pay to get the feature done. Contact one of the companies listed at http://bigbluebutton.org/support.

Reported by ffdixon on 2010-11-19 15:26:41

uhm...  too much enthusiasm?
we thought that to make to know you that various people is interested to the
feature were a way in order to support the priority: wrong way?

As I said in my first post, at the moment we are using a free version of a
commercial webconference system.
It's limited to three simultaneous users but this is not a problem (we need
just two user: the classroom as host and the child as guest).
It works fine so we aren't in a real hurry, but our organization philosophy
has a strong preference in open source software utilization.
And the aim of your project seem to be exactly in according with our.
So, actually, we would like to use BBB!
But we can't without a text tool for the whiteboard .  Are you able to make
an esteem of the times for the function development ?

coming to your suggestions:

1. we'll try to look for a programmers into our volunteers group (but we
have limited human resources, full employed in other projects)
2. not feasible, having no money for paying external developers...


Reported by riccardo.ruffilli on 2010-11-20 09:57:14

Hi Ric,

You've done right by making the requests.  We're very sensitive to what others are
looking for in BigBlueButton, and we read *everything* that is posted.

If you've followed our project, you'll know that we're planning on implementing record
and playback in the upcoming iteration (0.8).  See


The implementation of record and playback has been our most requested capability --
every university and college that has deployed BigBlueButton is looking for it -- and
it will be our focus for the next iteration.  

So, we're not saying 'No' to whiteboard enhancements, just want to set your expectations
that it won't happen in the next few months.  At each upcoming iteration, we look at
the requests for whiteboard (and other requests) and try to make the best choices for
applying our resources to improving BigBlueButton for everyone's benefit.

Reported by ffdixon on 2010-11-20 13:33:17

Thanks for your explanation, ffdixon.

We'll inform you if we found a volunteer for submit a patch.
Otherwise, we will wait hoping that the feature becomes of general intrest.

In the meantime, thankyou for your time.


Reported by riccardo.ruffilli on 2010-11-22 10:51:42


Reported by ffdixon on 2011-02-06 14:59:46

  • Labels added: Type-Enhancement
  • Labels removed: Type-Other

Reported by ffdixon on 2011-02-07 04:50:36

  • Labels added: Component-Whiteboard
  • Labels removed: Component-Client
        i Generated the text Area Code and also i share it..i changes the server side

 When i build the Server side code i got error like this,

firstuser@bbb-vm-20110320-10:~$ cd ~/dev/source/bigbluebutton/bigbluebutton-appsfirstuser@bbb-vm-20110320-10:~/dev/source/bigbluebutton/bigbluebutton-apps$
gradle war

FAILURE: Build failed with an exception.

* Where:
Build file '/home/firstuser/dev/source/bigbluebutton/bigbluebutton-apps/build.gradle'
line: 53

* What went wrong:
A problem occurred evaluating root project 'bigbluebutton-apps'.
Cause: You must specify dirs for the flat dir repository.

* Try:
Run with -s or -d option to get more details. Run with -S option to get the full (very
verbose) stacktrace.


How Can i Rectify this problem?Kindly help me?

Reported by elakkiyaa06 on 2011-07-18 13:05:29

export FLAT_REPO=/home/firstuser/dev/repo

Reported by Me.Snap on 2011-07-18 17:32:54

Hello to All
     My Project cannot be deploy i used this command export FLAT_REPO=/home/firstuser/dev/repo
gradle war
gradle deploy

Reported by elakkiyaa06 on 2011-07-29 07:12:05


What do you mean by "cannot deploy"? The war file was not copied into /usr/share/red5/webapps/
as bigbluebutton?

Reported by ritzalam on 2011-07-29 13:51:45

i changed my red 5 code.when i deploy that code ,it cannot be changed.how can i build

Reported by elakkiyaa06 on 2011-07-30 10:36:39

        My code is running successfully.But i can't load the project.That is
my modules cannot loaded..Just it like Connecting  into the Server,NO Error
s in my project.How can i rectify this problem.

Reported by elakkiyaa06 on 2011-07-31 05:07:56


Reported by ffdixon on 2012-05-03 03:03:23

Another vote for this feature on behalf of Moodle users! :)

Reported by moodler on 2012-05-05 11:15:48

I support this demand

Reported by sharalenne on 2012-05-08 11:56:08

Working on this for 0.81.

Reported by ffdixon on 2012-07-17 13:52:29

  • Status changed: Accepted
  • Labels added: Milestone-Release0.81

Reported by moodler on 2012-07-18 03:28:30

Hello, have been erally wodnering for a long time, are you guys going to make a whiteboard
such as wiz iq's?  They have bad quality on the sound site. So we are having problems
each day. It would be really helpful, if you guys make a white board for BBB.



Reported by azmat2909 on 2012-12-07 15:07:40

Implemented in the 0.81-dev.  

Reported by ffdixon on 2013-02-03 14:52:30

  • Status changed: Fixed
I agree. Whiteboard is crucial. 

Reported by profr.tutoring on 2013-12-10 12:12:13

Hi Profr.tutoring,

The text tool is already implemented in 0.81.  For an overview of it working, see


Reported by ffdixon on 2013-12-11 01:53:21

@kepstin kepstin modified the milestone: Release 0.81 Aug 12, 2015
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