LockDown Browser

The Respondus LockDown Browser (RLDB) is a locked browser that prevents students from printing, copying, going to another URL, or accessing other applications during an assessment. When the RLDB is enabled for a quiz, students will be required to download and use RLDB to take the quiz or exam. Watch an overview video on LockDown Browser.


Respondus Monitor is an automated proctoring feature that can be turned on when using the LockDown Browser that uses a student’s webcam and video analytics to help instructors catch cheating. Watch an overview video on Monitor.

See comparison of proctoring services available at UAB.


  • Faculty can customize settings for each quiz/exam
  • Assessments are displayed full-screen and cannot be minimized or exited until exam is submitted
  • Prevents access to other applications including messaging, screen-sharing, virtual machines, and network monitoring applications
  • Copy and paste, print, and screen capture functions are disabled
  • Students can take online exams 24/7 without pre-scheduling
  • Records and analyzes student exam sessions
  • Suspicious behaviors are flagged and ranked
  • Advanced Facial Detection can prevent exam from starting or prompt students to stay in frame


Faculty can enable Respondus LockDown Browser & Monitor for a Canvas Quiz by following the following directions:

  1. Make sure the quiz has been deployed in the Canvas course.
  2. From the Course Navigation in Canvas, select LockDown Browser.
  3. A list of quizzes in the course will be displayed.
    1. Quizzes will labeled with Required/Not Required under the corresponding features that are turned on for that exam (LockDown Browser and Respondus Monitor)
    2. To change the settings, select Settings from the context menu (down arrow) to the left of the quiz title and select the desired option.

See the guides below for more instructions and options.


When students land on the quiz page of a RLDB enabled quiz, they will be provided a link to download RLDB. Students will not be able to access (start) the quiz until they are accessing the quiz page from the RLDB.

Students can download the RLDB for their computer or iPad app. The app is currently available as a Beta on Chromebooks. Your instructor will inform you if iPads or Chromebooks are an option for their Exam/Quiz.

Note: Chromebooks are supported in a Beta only if your instructor allows. Please refer to your instructor to see if iPads are allowed for your quiz as this setting must be enabled by the instructor.


Who can enable LockDown Browser and access the Dashboard Results?

Only users with a “teacher” role in Canvas courses are able to access the Respondus LockDown Browser Link in the course navigation. Users with “Instructional Designer” or “Teaching Assistant” role can still create quizzes but only users with “teacher” role can enable the RLDB or access the dashboard to see results.

Should I offer a practice exam?

Yes! Administering a practice exam before having your students take an actual quiz or test in RLDB will allow them to test their equipment and learn to use the system in a no-stakes setting. Because we know your time is valuable, eLearning has created a practice exam that you can import into your courses.

Accessing the Practice Exam

Everything you need to successfully download the practice quiz onto your computer and upload it into Canvas is included in the Box folder link below. Please read the instructions before attempting to download the .zip file.

Download Respondus LDB Practice Exam

In the folder, you will see the following files:

  1. Read- 1. READ ME: Downloading a .zip file
  2. Download- 2. DownloadME_RLDB_practice_quiz.zip
  3. Read - 3. READ ME: Importing RLDB Quiz into Canvas Course
  4. Read- 4. READ ME: Using the RLDB Practice Quiz

Contact eLearning

If you encounter any issues trying to import and use this quiz, please reach out to us for assistance.

What should I say in my Syllabus?

The sample text below can be used in your course or syllabus. It explains that students must use LockDown Browser for their online tests and possibly use a webcam.

Using LockDown Browser and a Webcam for Online Exams

This course requires the use of LockDown Browser and a webcam for online exams. The webcam can be built into your computer or can be the type that plugs in with a USB cable. Watch this short video to get a basic understanding of LockDown Browser and the webcam feature. A student pdfQuick Start Guide is also available.

Then download and install LockDown Browser.


To ensure LockDown Browser and the webcam are set up properly, do the following:

  • Start LockDown Browser, log into uab.instructure.com, and select this course.
  • Locate and select the Help Center button on the LockDown Browser toolbar.
  • Run the Webcam Check and, if necessary, resolve any issues.
  • Run the System & Network Check. If a problem is indicated, see if a solution is provided in the Knowledge Base.
  • Upon completing and submitting the practice quiz, exit LockDown Browser.
Taking the Exam

When taking an online exam that requires LockDown Browser and a web cam, remember the following guidelines:

  • Ensure you're in a location where you won't be interrupted.
  • Turn off all other devices (e.g. tablets, phones, second computers) and place them outside of your reach.
  • Clear your desk of all external materials not permitted — books, papers, other devices.
  • Before starting the test, know how much time is available for it, and that you've allotted sufficient time to complete it.
  • Remain at your computer for the duration of the test.
  • If the computer or networking environment is different than what was used previously with the Webcam Check and System & Network Check in LockDown Browser, run the checks again prior to starting the test.
  • To produce a good webcam video, do the following:
    • Avoid wearing baseball caps or hats with brims.
    • Ensure your computer or tablet is on a firm surface (a desk or table). Do NOT have the computer on your lap, a bed, or other surface where the device (or you) are likely to move.
    • If using a built-in webcam, avoid tilting the screen after the webcam setup is complete.
    • Take the exam in a well-lit room and avoid backlighting, such as sitting with your back to a window.
  • Remember that LockDown Browser will prevent you from accessing other websites or applications; you will be unable to exit the test until all questions are completed and submitted.

How long does it take for videos to appear in the LockDown Browser Dashboard?

The average time for an exam video to be processed and available to an instructor is eight hours. The time can be greater during periods of high volume, and may take up to 24 hours. During periods of low volume, the time to process the video is roughly equal to the actual length of the video.

Can Spreadsheets be used with LockDown Browser?

LockDown Browser includes a tool that enables .xls/.xlsx spreadsheets (csv not supported) to be viewed and manipulated during an exam session. This functionality is available for Windows, Mac, and iPad editions of LockDown Browser. This functionality is not available for the Chromebook beta edition of LockDown Browser.

Within the quiz tool of the learning system, an instructor should embed/insert the spreadsheet file in the question wording. When a student selects the link within LockDown Browser, an Excel-like spreadsheet tool will open. The spreadsheet can be pre-populated with content or it can be a blank spreadsheet created in Excel that students use to prepare their answers.

As an example, the spreadsheet tool might be used with a multiple choice question. As shown below, a link provides access to a pre-populated spreadsheet. The student calculates the answer and then selects one of the answer choices.

Screenshot of an RLDB multiple choice question.

The image below shows the spreadsheet that was used for this exam question.

Screenshot of an RLDB spreadsheet.

Alternatively, an instructor can require students to create or modify a spreadsheet and submit it for grading. The example below shows how a short answer or essay question can be used for this purpose.

Screenshot of an RLDB essay question.

The question wording itself should provide guidance on the steps a student should follow. As shown above, students are instructed to:

  1. select the link that opens a pre-populated spreadsheet,
  2. create the required formula or calculation,
  3. select the button “Click here to save your work”, and
  4. paste the resulting URL into the answer field for the essay or short answer question.

After the spreadsheet file has been saved, a dialog will remind students to copy the resulting URL to the answer field using CTRL + V.

Screenshot of the reminder to students copy the link.

Following the exam, the instructor will see a unique URL within the LMS for each student who provided an answer for the essay or short answer question. Upon selecting the URL with a standard browser (not LockDown Browser), the Excel-like spreadsheet tool will open and the student’s work will be shown for that question.

Do I have to do anything for quizzes imported from other courses?

Yes, when a quiz that has Respondus LockDown Browser or Monitor enabled is copied or imported into another course, the instructor must visit the Respondus LockDown Browser Tab in the destination course one time so that it will authorize those settings to transfer to that course.

If this step is not completed, students may receive errors similar to the ones shown below that prevent them from taking the exam.

Lockdown Browser Error Message. Lockdown Browser Error Message.

To fix this issue:

  1. Go to the Canvas course, click Respondus LDB and Monitor in the course navigation on the left.
  2. You should see the success message shown below.
Settings have been updated alert window.

Note: It is not necessary to re-save each individual quiz's settings. Once you visit the dashboard, the errors will typically cease for all students who subsequently take their exams.

What can I do if students experience issues with images in my Quiz loading?

The issue of images not loading in Canvas Quizzes is most commonly attributed to students having low bandwidth. There are 2 recommendations when utilizing a lot of images in Canvas quizzes that can help prevent any issues with them loading.

Compress image size

We recommend compressing your images so that they are small files and can therefore be loaded quicker even with lower bandwidth internet connection. See this wiki on possible methods of compressing your images.

Change Canvas Quiz Settings to show one question at time

Canvas Quizzes show every question on a scrolling page by default which makes the web browser load all the images and may take a while. If instructors have a lot of images, they can change the quiz settings so that questions display one at time.

Use this Canvas guide to see more information.

What do I need to know about the LockDown Browser on Chromebooks?

There is a Chromebook Beta of LockDown Browser available. Students can use LockDown Browser on a Chromebook if you allow them to. This software is in Beta, there are limitations to be aware of that are listed below.

  • Quiz passwords (specified via the "optional password" field in the LockDown Browser Dashboard) aren’t currently supported. The Respondus Monitor “optional password” field is supported. This password field allows students to bypass the use of a webcam for exams using Respondus Monitor.
  • The “Early Exit” feature in LockDown Browser isn’t currently supported.
  • LockDown Browser’s Calculator and Spreadsheet features aren’t currently supported.
  • The extended keyboard functions (for adding symbols and special characters) isn’t currently available.
  • (Canvas) When using “New Quizzes,” students currently encounter a warning that the browser can’t open this page (this can be ignored).
  • LockDown Browser’s “Help Center” is currently unavailable.
  • "Allow access to specific external web domains" option is currently not supported.


Can I use a Chromebook with Respondus LockDown Browser or Monitor?

Yes, you can use a Chromebook to take a Canvas Quiz that requires Respondus LockDown browser or Monitor(if instructor has enabled). The Chromebook version of LockDown browser is a beta with a few limitations you should be aware of:

  • Quizzes/Exams that require a Quiz Password are not supported
  • Calculator and Spreadsheet features are not available in the Chromebook version of RLDB
  • Extended Keyboard functions for adding symbols and special characters I not available.

What are the PC/Mac system requirements?

See below for the full system requirements.

Operating Systems

Windows: 10, 8, 7

Mac: OS X 10.12 or higher

iOS: 11.0+ (iPad only). Must be enabled by the instructor in the Respondus LDB settings.

Note: LockDown Browser and Respondus Monitor may continue to run in older operating systems that have reached “end-of-life” but students may encounter unexpected results. Students running OS X 10.13 (High Sierra) should use LockDown Browser version or newer for best performance.


  • Windows: 2 GB RAM
  • Mac: 512 MB RAM

Hard Disk Space

  • Windows: 75 MB of free hard disk space
  • Mac: 120 MB of free hard disk space

Find out more here.

How much bandwidth is required to take Respondus Monitor enabled quiz?

There isn’t a specific kb/s requirement for using a webcam with Respondus Monitor because the recording quality automatically adjusts when a slower connection is detected.

Generally speaking, if the user has a decent broadband connection that doesn’t result in significant delays when accessing the learning system, the bandwidth will be fine for Respondus Monitor. If using a shared Internet connection, students should ensure that others on the same connection don’t use bandwidth-hungry services during the exam (such as online movies, games, file sharing, etc.).

Below are some tips to help ensure the best results:

  • If possible, plug an Ethernet cable into the computer to ensure the best possible network connection/speed. Otherwise, be as close to the Wi-Fi router as possible.
  • Shut down all other applications other than LockDown Browser. This will help reduce the bandwidth being used by other applications running in the background.

Is LockDown Browser accessible to those with disabilities?

The Mac version of LockDown Browser works with VoiceOver (the standard screen reader that comes with the Mac OS). LockDown Browser's functions and security remain the same when VoiceOver is used. Be sure you are using LockDown Browser version or newer.

As of LockDown Browser for Windows, accessibility is enabled for all users. Improvements to accessibility were added to version for Windows. Please have all students on Windows platforms upgrade to version and newer. The Windows version of LockDown Browser allows a student to use some screen reader accessibility programs, such as NVDA, JAWS, MS-Windows Narrator, ReadSpeaker webReader, and Windows-Eyes. In our experience, NVDA works the best. NVDA is free and available to download.

  • Zoom Text is compatible in regards to increasing the text size, but the reader is not currently compatible.
  • Read&Write Gold, Kurzweil 3000 are not compatible with LockDown Browser. Most "literacy" programs like these have a number incompatibilities and potential exploits that cannot be addressed in LockDown Browser. These programs are standalone Windows programs which cannot be brought on top of an active LockDown Browser exam. Also, for use with a browser, these programs require a custom browser plug-in that is not compatible with LockDown Browser.
  • For "speech to text" with Dragon Naturally Speaking, users have reported adjusting the settings to "not use the dictation box" in Dragon Naturally Speaking, will allow it to work with LockDown Browser.

To upgrade LockDown Browser, either download and install the full installation package, or start LockDown Browser, select the “i” button from the toolbar (Windows) or "about" button (Mac) and then click “Check for Newer Version”. The version will be displayed and you will be able to download a newer version if one is available.

Keep in mind that the security level of LockDown Browser is lowered when screen readers are used.

What do I do if I have downloaded LockDown Browser, but it is still asking me to download?

LockDown Browser (LDB) is a completely separate browser not a plug in. After downloading the LDB, the student needs to open the LockDown Browser software (found in applications) and access the exam through that browser. If the student is getting a message saying to download LDB, then they are still accessing the exam through a normal browser like Chrome, Firefox, Edge or Safari.

Live Webinars

Respondus offers webinars on this topic periodically.

Archived Workshops

Request Training

Group, one-on-one, or virtual sessions are also available to faculty.

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