To use all the features of Blackboard, you will need to have Java installed. Java is known to have some security vulnerabilities so we recommend that you use one browser with Java enabled, just to visit those few sites that need it, and that you keep your primary browser with Java disabled.

Ferris State University currently recommends the use of Java Version 7 Update 71 (1.7_71) for Windows users, and Java 8 Update 25 (1.8_25) for Mac users, with our systems such as Kronos and Banner. When you install it, be sure to opt out of installing the "Ask" toolbar.

How to tell if you have a 32 or 64 bit operating system

Windows Users

  • Note:  If you are having problems using some of the tools in Blackboard, you may have the 64-bit version installed. You may need to uninstall the 64 bit version and use the 32-bit version.
  • Find out what version of Java you have installed.
  • Remove incorrect Java versions
  • Disable Java Auto Update on 32 bit Windows computers
  • Install Java JRE 7 Update 71 for 32-bit OS
    • Once you have downloaded the correct version of Java, start by double clicking the file and selecting "Yes" at the User Account Control window.
    • A loading screen will now appear. When this is finished you will see a screen similar to the one below.  Click Install unless you would like to change the default installation directory.


    • When you have successfully installed Java you will be greeted by the following screen. Click Close.JavaInstall2

Java Version Check for Windows 

      1. Open up the Control Panel via the Start Tab
        Java Ver Chk Win7 SS 1
      2. From the Control Panel, click on the Java icon.

Control Panel - Java Icon






Click on the Java Tab.  Then click on View...

Java Control Panel









 In this view, you should see the Java version that is running.

Java Version View







 It is recommended that "1.7_71" is the only version installed.

NOTE: if there are multiple versions of Java installed, uncheck all of the boxes on the right except for the one belonging to 1.7_71.

Remove Unwanted Java Versions

      1. Open up Control Panel via the Start Menu.
      2. Open up "Add/Remove Programs" on Windows XP or ">Programs and Features" on Windows 7
      3. Scroll down the list and click Remove for any entries that start with Java that are not desired.
        Rem java ver ss 1

Mac Users

x86 Java Auto Update

Disable the automatic update of Java.

  1. Open up Control Panel via the Start Menu.
  2. Select the Java Icon
  3. Click on the Update tab and uncheck the Check for Updates Automatically.
    x86 Java Auto Update SS 1
  4. Click Ok

x64 Java Auto Update

Disable the automatic update of Java.

  1. Open Windows Explorer
  2. Browse to the drive where you install software.  In most cases this is the C:\
  3. Double Click the folder Program Files(x86)
  4. Double Click the folder Java
  5. Double Click the folder jre6
  6. Double Click the folder bin
  7. Right-click on javacpl.exe and select Run as Administrator.
  8. Click Yes that you want to allow the following program to make changes to your computer.
  9. Click the Update tab and uncheck Check for Updates Automatically.
    x64 Java Auto Update SS 1
  10. A warning screen may appear.  Click Never Check.
  11. Click Ok