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In order to effectively use all tools in WebCT, you must:

1. Visit the Browser tuneup page and make sure that your browser has all the recommended settings for either WebCT 4.1 Campus Edition or WebCT Vista 3.0 http://www.webct.com/tuneup

You may also have to:

2. Go to your Internet Explorer menu bar and look in "tools" then "internet Options". now click the "Advanced' tab. Scroll down the list and deselect "show friendly HTTP error messages".

3. Disable any "Accelerators" you might be using in conjunction with your ISP. This would include EarthLink Accelerator, BellSouth Accelerator Technology, as well as any personal "Internet accelerators" you may have (downloaded and) installed. For example, see How to Disable Bellsouth Accelerator

4. Disable any personal Firewalls (such as Zone Alarm) and pop-up blockers (AOL, EarthLink, Norton) during your WebCT session.

5. Uninstall any 3rd party Search Bars (like HotBar or WebSearch). They are known to give trouble with login and activity.

6. Disable or configure DSL router firewalls to allow WebCT use. For example, see How to Configure Alltel's Router.

7. Disable any pop-up blockers or configure to allow... Have Windows XP? Service Pack 2 has a built-in pop-up blocker. Find out how it and others affect WebCT in this Pop-up Help Guide. (http://academics.georgiasouthern.edu/dlc/webct/popup.php)

Still need help? See below...

The most common problems and possible solutions are:

1. I cannot logon

2. I can login but do not see my course listed

3. I can login but when I enter my course I am asked for an additional "access code"

4. Access Problems (in general)

a. 403 or Access Forbidden Errors

b. Cannot login or computer tries to download a file

c. Some windows do not open correctly

d. Access Forbidden error or "Internet Optimizer" site loads when logging in

e. Computer locks up or freezes when trying to access links to certain files

f. Access problems persist after above fixes applied (Kazaa Users Take Note!)

5. Chat window will not open

6. I need to know how to use WebCT

7. Continuing to Have Problems?

 

1. I cannot login

Need to know how to Log in? See WebCT Login Help

For further login problems, see the WebCT Browser Tune Up page...Note: UWG uses WebCT v.4.1 Campus Edition (CE)...
and make sure you have applied these settings or you will encounter problems while working with WebCT. Ensure your browser settings are correct before carrying out any further troubleshooting or requesting support for a WebCT problem.

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2. I can login but do not see my course listed

If you ARE able to login, but do not see your couse listed, note that you will not be able to access your course on your myWebCT page until the instructor has imported the class roster. Note that the instructor may not choose to import the roster until roughly two weeks into the semester. If you are having trouble:

++ Contact the instructor of the course FIRST.

++ If you have any further problems, please contact Distance Education at 678-839-6248 or distance@westga.edu.

Please note that a late enrolment can take up to three days to filter through the system and appear as a course in myWebCT.

3. I can login but when I enter my course I am asked for an additional "access code"

If you ARE able to login, but your course requires you to agree to a user agreement and then enter an access code, it is because the instructor is using an "ePack" from their textbook provider. The student's access code should have been included with their textbook package bought from UWG bookstore. If they don't have it; they have to buy it. If they have it and it does not work then see this website for assitance: http://help.webct.com/code_troubleshooting.htm

Many BIOL1010 courses (if not all) will be using one of these ePacks that requires a student access code.

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4. Access Problems (see symptoms below)

First, complete the WebCT Browser Tune Up (Note: UWG uses WebCT v.3.8 Campus Edition (CE)...
and make sure you have applied these settings or you will encounter problems while working with WebCT. Ensure your browser settings are correct before carrying out any further troubleshooting or requesting support for a WebCT problem.

Both students and staff have lately been affected by the onslaught of a new breed of noxious Internet nasties known as "parasites" that infect web browsers, especially Internet Explorer. "Parasite" is a shorthand term for "unsolicited commercial software" -- that is, a program that gets installed on your computer which you never asked for, and which does something you probably don't want it to, for someone else's profit. For more information and to detect for parasites on your computer as well as instructions on how to remove them, visit http://www.doxdesk.com/parasite. Note that the detection will ONLY work on Internet Explorer 5 (or later).

As well, a number of innocuous programs designed to improve your web experience can in fact degrade your use of WebCT dramatically, as can some system software or web browser upgrades, patches and security fixes. Often these programs will install after you choose "Yes" to a basic question asking you if you would like to improve your internet experience. As always, if you are in doubt about the need for a specific program it is usually wiser not to install it.

The following tips regarding 403 errors, Download Managers, Spyware, Adware and Pop-up Stoppers will aid you in avoiding potential problems or fixing them after they have occurred....

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a. 403 or Access Forbidden Errors

A recent Internet Explorer 6 update/patch installed by Windows Update may cause access problems for some users.

Symptom:

Access is "Forbidden" and/or the error "403" is displayed when attempting to log in.

Solution:

In Internet Explorer 6 in the "Tools" menu select "Internet Options" followed by the "Advanced" tab, deselect (uncheck) "Show friendly HTTP error messages" which is under the "Browsing" section.

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b. Cannot login or computer tries to download a file

If you have a download manager installed and are experiencing WebCT access problems you may need to remove the download manager from your computer. Download managers can adversely affect access to course content and WebCT. In particular they can prevent logging in and also the viewing of some content.

Symptom:

When I try to log into myWebCT, my computer tries to download a file. E.g. after entering the User name and Password, the PC prompts to save a file. Alternative symptoms include complete inability to get past the login screen.

Diagnosis:

The problem is caused by Download Manager software that may be installed on your computer system. At some point Real Download (a product of Real Player) or Smart Download (a product of Netscape) was installed on your PC.

Solution for Windows users:

1) Click on the Start button.

2) Go to Settings and open Control Panel.

3) Double click on the Add/Remove Programs icon.

4) Click on the installed download manager, either Smart Download or Real Download to select. If you have both of these programs, you will need to remove them both.

5) After selecting the download manager, click the option to Change or Remove the program.

6) You will be prompted through the uninstallation of the program.

7) After uninstallation, reboot the PC.

These two download managers may be reinstalled the next time you visit the Real Player or Netscape web sites and download files.

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c. Some windows do not open correctly

Software designed to eliminate “pop-up” windows opening while web browsing may interfere with the functioning of WebCT. There are a range of names these programs go by including Pop-Up Stopper, Defender and Zapper. Pop-up stoppers may also be included with virus checkers and other internet security software. See a more complete list of anti-popup ware here: http://distance.westga.edu/webct/popuplist.html

Also, see this Pop-up Help Guide (http://academics.georgiasouthern.edu/dlc/webct/popup.php)

Note: Some versions of Internet Explorer and Netscape 7.1 come with a pop-up stopper automatically installed and turned on. See browser tool options to disable the device or set it to allow http://webct.westga.edu.
Also, see this Pop-up Help Guide
(http://academics.georgiasouthern.edu/dlc/webct/popup.php)

Symptom:

Inability to view Discussion postings, Quiz pop-up windows, download links or other tools that may be attempting to open in a new window.

Diagnosis:

Windows Users: Either remove or disable pop-up software. It may be possible to locate this software under Add/Remove Programs in the Control Panel. See instructions as per Download Managers.

For Norton Internet Security Users: Add UWG's WebCT IP address as a trusted site so that the pop-ups will continue to work in WebCT.

1) Open Norton Internet Security.

2) Click on Norton Firewall.

3) Go to Home Networking.

4) Add 160.10.4.51 to add UWG's WebCT server to the list of trusted sites.

ZoneAlarm Firewall Users: Here are some quick instructions on how to configure Zone Alarm with WebCT. If you use a different firewall, you will find the same settings on your version: http://distance.westga.edu/webct/firewalls.html. Note that even if you disable the "anti-popup feature you STILL may have to disable the "anti-javascipt feature".

Anti-PopUp Software: You may need to "disable", "exit", "quit" or "shutdown" any pop-up stopper, ad-ware prevention, or firewall software that runs on your computer, in order to use certain WebCT tools. Recent releases of anti-virus come with built-in anti-popup features.

Earthlink Users: Earthlink now comes with a built-in anti pop-up ware automatically turned on -- you need to turn it off - see this webpage for help turning the Earthlink pop-op blocker off -- if you need help, see the Earthlink support website or call them at 1-800-719-4660.

PopUp Stopper (Panicware): Used by Internet Explorer. Go here to find out how to locate and disable PopUp Stopper (Panicware):
http://distance.westga.edu/webct/popupstopper.html

Other Ad Filters and PopUp Stoppers: more directions for disabling: http://distance.westga.edu/webct/popup2.htm

Additional help with Pop-up Blockers (Georgia Southern): Pop-up help
http://academics.georgiasouthern.edu/dlc/webct/popup.php

Anti-Virus Software: Recent releases of anti-virus software may interfere with your use of WebCT. For example, Norton's Anti-Virus Software now comes with built-in anti-popup, firewall, and anti-java-script features. If you do not take care to disable or specify your WebCT sites as "ok" or set your security at the "lowest" possible setting, you may not be able to access http://webct.westga.edu at all (you may get an error or a "frame mis-match error"). Also, you may not be able to use certain WebCT tools.

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d. Access Forbidden error or "Internet Optimizer" site loads when logging in

The helpdesk recommends all users install preventative measures against spyware, adware, parasites and virii. An infestation of any of these malicious programs can cause problems accessing WebCT or any web site.

A common example of this type of malicious program is “Internet Optimizer”. This program will redirect you to its own web site when you attempt to log in to WebCT.

Symptom:

Upon login user's browser is hijacked to the Internet Optimizer site and the following (or similar) message appears:

HELP/NAVIGATION ERROR - Forbidden

Access to this URL is Forbidden http://160.10.4.51/SCRIPT/CourseCode/scripts/serve_home.

To Prevent Infection:

Ad-aware and SpyBot are simple to use tools for removing and preventing infection of spyware, adware and parasites including Internet Optimizer. Install at least one of these programs and run at least once to remove any items that they uncover. Such software can be found on: http://www.download.com/

There are inherent risks with installing any new software onto your computer. Please check with your favorite expert for their recommendations before proceeding.

Possible Solution for an Internet Optimizer Infestation:

In Windows go to the Start menu and select Settings. Open the Control Panel and choose Add/Remove Programs.

Look for Active Alert and Internet Optimizer. If these entries are there, select Change Remove for each one in turn. Follow the steps to remove the program.

It has been known for these solutions to not completely remove the infestation or for reinfection to occur. Reinstallation of the Browser or worse the operating system is often the only cure. Alternatively install and use a different brand of Web Browser. As the problem appears to be limited to Microsoft products an alternative browser such as Netscape may be the only solution.

SpyBot and some virus checkers can be set to detect these nasties as they enter your system. However you must ensure that you keep your virus checker, spyware and adware checkers up to date to prevent reinfection as the attackers regularly modify their programs to get around common defences.

Important Note: Virus Checker

A virus checker should be the first item installed even prior to attempting a fix for any login problems.

 

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e. Computer locks up or freezes when trying to access links to certain files

Cause: If the link is to a non-webpage type file.. for example, a link to a Microsoft Word document, a PowerPoint file, or a .PDF file.. the problem could be that your system is set to automatically open files of this type but your computer cannot handle the particular file in this manner (either due to file size or slow network connection)

You might have a less frustrating time setting your computer to NOT auto-open these types of files.. to instead prompt you to download them (save them) to your computer and open off-line.

Directions for PC/ Windows Operating System:

On Desktop, Click on "My Computer"
Select C: drive
On the upper tool bar, select "Tools" and from pull-down menu select
"Folder Options"
Choose the "File Types" Tab
Select (Click to Highlight) type of file desired .. they are in
alphabetical order.. common types include .ZIP and .DOC files
... and then click on the "Advanced" button
Make sure the box "confirm open after download" is checked (if you want
your browser to prompt for manual download and open) or unchecked (if
you want your browser to try and automatically open files of this type).

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f. Access problems persist after above fixes applied

Cause: File sharing programs

Peer-to-peer software (for instance KaZaA, Napster, BearShare, Grokster or iMesh) downloads spyware, adware and parasites on to your computer, hindering or even preventing use of some software including WebCT. For example, Note that KaZaA (but not KaZaa lite) automatically places the PerfectNav parasite on your computer which causes a conflict with WebCT.

Key indicators that your system is infected with SpyWare

  • Error messages referencing Perfect Nav or Internet Optimizer
  • Bombarded by pop-ups
  • Slow or no network connection
  • Computer freezing or hanging
  • Frequent system crashes
  • System slowdown
  • Slow System Start-up
  • Getting lots of SPAM emails lately?

Possible ways to get rid of infestation:

1. Ad-aware and SpyBot are simple to use tools for removing and preventing infection of spyware, adware and parasites. Install at least one of these programs and run at least once to remove any items that they uncover. Such software can be found on: http://www.download.com/

2. Some software is available to clean up specific applications. For instance, DietK is a free way to clean up infestations cause by KaZaA: http://www.dietk.com/

3. For more information and to detect for parasites on your computer as well as instructions on how to remove them, visit
http://www.doxdesk.com/parasite. Note that this detection will ONLY work on Internet Explorer 5 (or later).

4. Specifically, to remove Perfect Nav: http://www.kephyr.com/spywarescanner/library/perfectnav/index.phtml

If the problem persists after trying these measures you may need to uninstall any peer-to-peer file sharing software.

Another alternative is to download Mozilla Firefox 1.5 (www.mozilla.com/firefox/) and use it as your browser for WebCT. Once downloaded and installed, do not forget to disable the pop-up blocker or set it to allow for http://webct.westga.edu.

*Note:
Netscape 8 is not a supported browser for WebCT.

A note for Mac Users

Although we rarely see these issues on Macintosh computers, as the browser is the target, Mac users can also be infected. We recommend Macintosh users also remain vigilant and install a virus checker where it is available. A virus checker as always is an absolute necessity regardless of computer platform.

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5. Chat window will not open

Network Firewalls: If you are planning on accessing the web and WebCT from any networked computer (for example, most office computers or computers at a K-12 school) you may run into problems with the network security system. Your network support should make sure there are no firewalls or filters blocking the following ports: 7900, 4445, 4567, or 4568. There should also be no java or chat blocks or filters.

Disable or configure DSL router firewalls to allow WebCT use. For example, see How to Configure Alltel's Router.

Again, complete the WebCT Browser Tune Up (Note: UWG uses WebCT v.4.1Campus Edition (CE))...
and make sure you have applied these settings or you will encounter problems while working with WebCT. Ensure your browser settings are correct before carrying out any further troubleshooting or requesting support for a WebCT problem.

If problems persist, refer to Section 3c. of this manual, "Windows do not open correctly."

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6. Helpful Tools for easy navigation through WebCT

Access the WebCT's Student Orientation resources available at: http://www.webct.com/oriented/viewpage?name=oriented_orientation_program_home

Access Online Student Services for UWG distance students at: http://www.westga.edu/~online.

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7. Continuing to Have Problems?

If you continue to have problems, please contact the UWG Distance and Distributed Education (DDEC) Helpdesk:

Email: distance@westga.edu

Phone (Monday-Friday 8am-5pm; some late evenings M-TH): 678-839-6248

*After-hours- WebCT help:
http://help.view.usg.edu *
24 hrs/ day - 365 days a yr
***Make sure you mention that your course is hosted on the University of West Georgia's WebCT Server at http://webct.westga.edu

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