This section provides questions and answers on a variety of topics regarding WCONLINE's Online Consultation Module. Be sure to also review Setting Up the Online Consultation Module and Using the Online Consultation Module, as questions answered in those sections are not duplicated here.
What is the Online Consultation Module?
The Online Consultation Module, built into WCONLINE, provides a virtual meeting space with text chat, audio and video chat, a shared, synchronous whiteboard that both participants can use at the same time, and tools for drawing and math.
What are the technical requirements to use the Online Consultation Module?
Like all of WCONLINE, the Online Consultation Module can be used with any type of device with any modern web browser (Firefox, Safari, Chrome, or Edge). The Module does require a stable internet connection and will be the most useable on a high-speed (non-dial-up) connection. Optionally, you can use audio and video within a session and, to do so, would need to have a webcam and microphone attached to your computer with the drivers and permissions needed for it to work within your web browser.
Rarely, an internet provider (and typically a "free wi-fi" provider) will block access to the ports used by online conferencing tools. If an individual sees a "page not found" or a continuously-loading page when accessing an online session, they might need to reach out to their internet provider to ensure that ports 9088, 9089, 9090, 9091, 9093, and 3478 are open. Additionally, for video and audio, UDP ports 0-65535 should also be available.
Why can't individuals see and hear each other even if video and audio is enabled?
Video and audio within WCONLINE’s Online Consultation Module relies on a technology called WebRTC. That technology is built into every major browser and is responsible for creating a peer-to-peer connection between the participants’ computers in an online session. This means that WCONLINE doesn’t control or have access to an individual’s camera, nor does the video or audio come through WCONLINE’s infrastructure.
As long as USE AUDIO/VIDEO IN ONLINE MEETINGS is set to "Yes" in Global System Settings, then individuals will be prompted to allow WCONLINE to access their camera when they first join an online meeting.
If a participant in an online session doesn’t see video or audio options or can’t see the other participant, then that means that the individual’s camera isn’t available to their web browser or isn’t broadcasting. Most likely, this is because the individual said “no” or hit “escape” when the browser asked for permission to access the camera when first joining a session. It’s also possible that the individual has disabled access to the camera for the entire browser or has set the browser to only allow such access for specific websites.
In any case, we recommend moving forward by:
What can be done about reconnection or disconnection messages that individuals sometimes see briefly during a session?
An online meeting requires that both participants have an internet connection that is stable. If one person's internet is unstable, then both participants will see a "reconnection/disconnection" message while the system attempts to re-establish the synchronous connection between the parties. While there is not a permanent fix other than using a different internet connection, there are some things that participants should do if they experience frequent disconnects.
First, the online module (and video and audio specifically) is a high-bandwidth application. If sharing an internet connection in a household, participants should try to minimize the use of other high bandwidth applications—like movies and games—being used on the same connection. Additionally, because browsers prioritize the active tab, participants should use just one tab in their browser and not browse away in other tabs. Finally, disconnecting from the session and then reconnecting (or waiting a few minutes and then trying again) could also help establish the connection.
Why is some formatting lost when a document is imported into the Module?
The Module is strongly focused on collaborating on content while keeping as much formatting as possible. While it retains a lot of formatting so that nearly all typical documents (such as papers) are readable and have paragraph breaks and other basic formatting, it does not keep all possible formatting, especially if clients use tables, image-based PDFs, or other complicated formatting.
If clients are working specifically on the formatting of resumes or lists of references where they have used tables and other formatting that does not show up in online meetings, they can attach the document to their appointment before their meeting (which allows the staff member to download the original document). If you haven't already, you would need to ALLOW FILES TO BE ATTACHED TO APPOINTMENTS in Schedule Management.
Can I replace the Module with Zoom or Bluejeans?
In "System Integrations" within Global System Settings, you can integrate Zoom or BlueJeans into WCONLINE. Once integrated, clients would use those technologies instead of the Online Consultation Module when connecting to online sessions through WCONLINE.
If you would prefer to use Zoom, BlueJeans, or another online conferencing application without a formal integration, you can:
SECTION 1: Setting Up the Online Consultation Module
SECTION 2: Using the Online Consultation Module