ITS Service Desk

How To Use Virtual Backgrounds in Zoom

The Virtual Background feature allows you to display an image or video as your background during a Zoom Meeting. You can upload your own images or videos, or you can select from several images made available to all users.

While in a meeting, most users can click the up arrow (^) next to Start/Stop Video and then click "Choose a virtual background." Be sure to use the links below for additional information.



The Office of Communications has provided several SNC-related backgrounds for use by all users. Users must have client/app version 5.1.1 or higher and must be logged into their SNC account to see these background images.


Zoom does not support virtual backgrounds on all computers. All of the details for various operating systems (Windows, MacOS, etc) are available in their system requirements for virtual backgrounds.

First of all, you must have at least version 5.2.0 of the Zoom app on Windows or version 4.6.0 of the Zoom app on MacOS. See our related article on how to update the Zoom app.

As for the computer itself, there are limitations based on the operating system and the processor. This is not as easy to nail down, as we have many computers on campus with various computer configurations. Generally speaking, virtual backgrounds will not work on the following SNC computers:

  • MacOS, purchased before July 2019
  • Windows, purchased before 2016

You can see your computer on our Computer Configurations web page. If you'd like more info about the capabilities of your computer, just let us know.

Additional Resources

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