UBIT retiring Webex this November

Published September 22, 2021

The Webex video conferencing service is being retired during November due to widespread use of Zoom at UB. But fans of Webex can make the transition and save their Webex recordings and data in the process.

While Webex was introduced at UB in 2018, it was never widely adopted. During the 2020-21 academic year — when the pandemic required most members of the UB community to work and learn remotely — use of Webex was down, with only 1,800 people using the service to host a meeting. By contrast, 24,000 people used Zoom at UB to host more than 800,000 meetings.

UBIT has resources for Webex users that will make their transition to Zoom easier, including ways to get one-on-one help and answers to questions.

Making the transition to Zoom

UBIT’s Service Guides cover everything related to Zoom at UB, including:

The UB Zoom Service Guide also offers customized videos covering many aspects of Zoom, from getting started to keeping meetings secure.

Zoom security

Zoom meetings at UB have robust security settings enabled by default, and Zoom is updated regularly with new security features and patches for bugs that might cause future security concerns.

Additionally, UBIT has compiled recommendations for hosting a more secure meeting with Zoom, including ways to handle disruptions and report disruptive incidents to prevent them from happening in the future.

Hosting large meetings, events

One of the appeals of Webex was the ability to host up to 1,000 participants in a single meeting, training or event.

Standard Zoom meetings allow for up to 300 participants at a time. While data shows this is sufficient for most meetings at UB, some UB staff and faculty occasionally need to host more people.

To support this goal, UB offers temporary use of special Zoom licenses. These “webinar” licenses allow for up to 1,000 people in a single meeting. There are also 500-person licenses available for large classes.  Contact the UBIT Help Center to request a Zoom license loan for large meetings and webinars.

Saving UB Webex recordings

UBIT has a dedicated guide to saving Webex recordings on other UB platforms —either UBbox or Panopto is recommended, depending on the need. Follow the instructions to guarantee Webex recordings are available once the platform is retired.

Help with the transition

Dedicated UBIT experts in both Webex and Zoom can help users understand any differences in the platforms, and gain the confidence needed to start using Zoom at UB. Contact the UBIT Help Center at buffalo.edu/ubit/help or at 716-645-3542.

Once you’re using Zoom, request help directly with Zoom.

UB instructors using video conferencing software like Webex or Zoom in their teaching can visit buffalo.edu/teachanywhere for more support and resources for flexible teaching.