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Stable release 0.81 / November 8, 2013
Operating system GNU/Linux
Type Collaborative software, Web conferencing
License LGPL[1]

BigBlueButton is an open source web conferencing system developed primarily for distance education.


BigBlueButton supports multiple audio and video sharing, presentations with extended whiteboard capabilities - such as a pointer, zooming and drawing - public and private chat, desktop sharing, integrated VoIP using FreeSWITCH, and support for presentation of PDF documents and Microsoft Office documents. Moreover, users may enter the conference in one of two roles: viewer or moderator.

As a viewer, a user may join the voice conference, share their webcam, raise their hand, and chat with others. As a moderator, a user may mute/unmute others, eject any user from the session, and make any user the current presenter. The presenter may upload slides and control the presentation.[2]

Although its components are open source, the BigBlueButton client depends on a browser plugin for the Adobe Flash platform. The BigBlueButton server runs on Ubuntu 10.04 64-bit and can be installed either from source code or from Ubuntu packages. BigBlueButton is also downloadable as a Virtual Machine (VM) that runs within VMware Player on PC and Unix computers and within VMWare Fusion on Macs.[3] The BigBlueButton server can also run within a cloud environment, such as Amazon EC2, by installing it on an Ubuntu 10.04 64-bit instance.


Similar to Openmeetings, BigBlueButton uses red5, an open source implementation of Adobe's Flash Media Server, to support its real-time collaboration.[4][5]


In 2007 the project was started at Carleton University by the Technology Innovation Management program.[6] The first version was written by Richard Alam (it was initially called the Blindside project) under the supervision of Tony Bailetti.[7]

In 2009 Richard Alam, Denis Zgonjanin, and Fred Dixon uploaded the BigBlueButton source code to Google Code and formed Blindside Networks, a company pursuing the traditional open source business model of providing paid support and services to the BigBlueButton community.[8]

In 2010 the core developers added a whiteboard for annotating the uploaded presentation. Jeremy Thomerson added an application programming interface (API) which the BigBlueButton community subsequently used to integrate with Sakai,[9] WordPress,[10] Moodle 1.9,[11][12] Moodle 2.0,[12] Joomla,[13] Redmine,[14] Drupal,[15] Tiki Wiki CMS Groupware,[16] Foswiki,[17] and LAMS.[18] Google accepted BigBlueButton into the 2010 Google Summer of Code program.[19] To encourage contributions from others, the core developers moved the source code from Google Code to GitHub.[20] The project indicated its intent to create an independent not-for-profit BigBlueButton Foundation to oversee future development.[21]

In 2011 the core developers announced they were adding record and playback capabilities to BigBlueButton 0.80.[22]

In 2012 BigBlueButton 0.80 was released.[23]

In 2013 BigBlueButton 0.81 was released. [24]

Version Release date
Old version, no longer supported: 0.32 1 September 2008
Old version, no longer supported: 0.4 12 June 2009
Old version, no longer supported: 0.5 21 July 2009
Old version, no longer supported: 0.60 12 August 2009
Old version, no longer supported: 0.61 15 September 2009[25]
Old version, no longer supported: 0.62 11 November 2009[26]
Old version, no longer supported: 0.63 25 January 2010[27]
Old version, no longer supported: 0.64 3 April 2010[28]
Old version, no longer supported: 0.70 15 July 2010[29]
Old version, no longer supported: 0.71 9 November 2010[30]
Old version, no longer supported: 0.71a 13 January 2011[31]
Old version, no longer supported: 0.8-beta1 12 September 2011[32]
Old version, no longer supported: 0.8-beta2 12 September 2011
Old version, no longer supported: 0.8-beta3 1 December 2011[33]
Old version, no longer supported: 0.8-beta4 6 March 2012[34]
Old version, no longer supported: 0.80 18 June 2012[35]
Current stable version: 0.81 7 November 2013[36]
Old version
Older version, still supported
Latest version
Latest preview version
Future release

The BigBlueButton name comes from the initial concept that starting a web conference should be as simple as pressing a metaphorical big blue button.[37]

Third party integrations[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ open-source-license-2. 
  2. ^ "BigBlueButton Overview". Archived from the original on 25 October 2010. Retrieved 2010-10-23. 
  3. ^ "Installation - BigBlueButton - Overview of installation options - Project Hosting on Google Code". BigBlueButton. Retrieved 2010-10-23. 
  4. ^ It also uses redis, the open-source key-value data store software, to maintain an internal list of its meetings, attendees, and any other relevant information. "Red5 : Open Source Flash Server Open Source Flash". Archived from the original on 30 September 2010. Retrieved 2010-10-23. 
  5. ^ Morales, Aurelio F. "Open Source Collaboration Software for Multipoint Video, Audio, and Text", FINAL PROJECT REPORT FOR EEL5718 - COMPUTER COMMUNICATIONS, April, 2010.
  6. ^ Nettleton, Rob "BigBlueButton", EDC Blog, June 4, 2010.
  7. ^ "Lead Projects". TIM Review. Retrieved 2012-08-15. 
  8. ^ Dixon, Fred "Lessons from an Open Source Business", Open Source Business Resource, April, 2011.
  9. ^ "Home - Contrib: bigbluebutton - Confluence". Archived from the original on 22 October 2010. Retrieved 2010-10-23. 
  10. ^ "WordPress Plugin Directory: BigBlueButton". Archived from the original on 6 November 2010. Retrieved 2010-10-23. 
  11. ^ " Modules and plugins: BigBlueButton". Retrieved 2010-10-23. 
  12. ^ a b "BigBlueButton releases activity module integration for Moodle 1.9 & 2.0". Retrieved 2011-01-18. 
  13. ^ "BigBlueButton Integration - Joomla! Extensions Directory". Archived from the original on 20 October 2010. Retrieved 2010-10-23. 
  14. ^ "Redmine - PluginBBB - Redmine". Archived from the original on 3 October 2010. Retrieved 2010-10-23. 
  15. ^ "BigBlueButton -". Retrieved 2010-10-23. 
  16. ^ "BigBlueButton - Tiki Wiki CMS Groupware". Retrieved 2011-01-22. 
  17. ^ "BigBlueButtonPlugin -". Archived from the original on 17 November 2010. Retrieved 2010-11-19. 
  18. ^ "BigBlueButton integration -". Retrieved 2011-05-04. 
  19. ^ "GSoC Organization for BigBlueButton". Retrieved 2010-10-23. 
  20. ^ Dixon, Fred. "Minutes from BigBlueButton committers meeting 2010-04-27 - BigBlueButton-dev - Google Groups". Retrieved 2010-10-23. 
  21. ^ Dixon, Fred "BigBlueButton Foundation", BigBlueButton Blog, July 12, 2010
  22. ^ Dixon, Fred. "BigBlueButton 0.8-beta-3 released - BigBlueButton-dev - Google Groups". Retrieved 2010-11-24. 
  23. ^ Dixon, Fred. "BigBlueButton 0.80 Released". Retrieved 2012-07-16. 
  24. ^ Dixon, Fred. "BigBlueButton 0.81 Released". Retrieved 2014-04-16. 
  25. ^ release-of-bigbluebutton-0-61. 
  26. ^ bigbluebutton-0-62-released. 
  27. ^ bigbluebutton-0-63-released. 
  28. ^ bigbluebutton-0-64-released. 
  29. ^ bigbluebutton-0-7-is-released. 
  30. ^ bigbluebutton-0-71-is-released. 
  31. ^ bigbluebutton-0-71a-released. 
  32. ^ bigbluebutton-0-8-beta-released. 
  33. ^ bigbluebutton-0-8-beta-3-released. 
  34. ^ bigbluebutton-0-8-beta-4-released. 
  35. ^ bigbluebutton-0-8-released. 
  36. ^ eleventh-release. 
  37. ^ "FAQ - BigBlueButton Frequently Asked Questions - Project Hosting on Google Code". BigBlueButton. Retrieved 2010-10-24. 

External links[edit]