Using the Zoom Whiteboard

Last Updated:

Zoom Whiteboard tools are used to create and manipulate objects on canvas. You can draw, add shapes, type text, and insert sticky notes and templates. You can also upload images and pdf files, and use more advanced tools. In this article, you will learn about the different tools you can find in the Zoom Whiteboard and how to use them.

This article covers:

Prerequisites for using the whiteboard tools

Zoom Whiteboard in Meetings

How to use the Zoom Whiteboard tools

The whiteboard editing tools available for use are located on the left side of the screen. To activate a tool, click its icon. Once selected, the mouse cursor will change to indicate the current tool mode. For most controls, clicking on the canvas will then create an object of that type. If using the select tool, you will be able to select one or more objects and change their properties.

Editing tools

  • Select tool: Places cursor in select mode so you can click objects and change their properties. Clicking an object will bring up that object’s context menu.
    • Context menu:
      • Select: Selecting an element will bring up the settings menu allowing you to copy, paste, and duplicate the selected element. You can also use this menu to adjust the element layers.
      • Grab: Places cursor in hand mode to move the canvas freely without unintentionally selecting and moving objects.
  • Draw tool: Places cursor into drawing mode to perform freehand sketching.
    • Brush types: Pen or Highlighter
    • Context menu:
      • Change line thickness
      • Change color
  • Shape tool: Places cursor into shape mode to create basic shapes, callout shapes, flowchart symbols, UML symbols, and equations. Users can click + drag and click + tap anywhere on the whiteboard to draw shapes.
    • Context menu:
      • Change fill (full, opaque, hollow)
      • Change shape
      • Change color
  • Line tool: Creates line objects. Users can drag lines from the toolbar, attach them to shapes, and use them as connectors.
    • Line types: straight, one-end arrow, double-end arrow
    • Context menu:
      • Change line thickness
      • Change color
  • Text: Creates text. Double-clicking a text object puts the object into text editing mode. When users type a text in a text box, the text box width automatically adjusts to fit the text completely.
    • Context menu:
      • Font style (bold, italic, underline)
      • Font size
      • Font alignment
      • Font color
        Note: The maximum number of characters per text edit is 5000.
  • Sticky Note: Creates a note idea that can be used to draw attention. When users select a sticky note, they can conveniently create a poll and send it to others to gather quick feedback.
    • Context menu:
      • Change background color
  • Comment: Allows users to add comments to specific elements or areas on the whiteboard canvas. 
  • Frame: Allows users to organize and sequence content within a canvas. Users can easily switch between aspect ratios, such as 16:9, 4:3, 1:1, Letter, and A4. For unique specifications, users have the freedom to define a custom aspect ratio, enabling complete control over the canvas dimensions.
  • Templates: Gives a pre-formatted structure and layout that can be used as a base to create many whiteboards.
  • Upload PDFs and Images: Allows users to upload PDF or image files (JPG or PNG) from your computer onto the board. When PDF files and images are uploaded to the canvas, users can move the files around, adjust the size, crop the unwanted parts, connect to other shapes, and add comments on or around them. Additionally, users can extract individual PDF pages to add annotations and download the files that have been uploaded to the Whiteboard.
  • More Tools: Allows users to add advanced tools such as:

How to use Zoom Whiteboard controls

Controls on the top-left section

  • Star icon : Allows users to star or favorite a whiteboard for quick reference. Starred whiteboards are displayed in the Starred tab on the Zoom Whiteboard dashboard.
  • More actions icon : Contains additional options and features that are not displayed on the main whiteboard menu.
    • Board History: Allows users to view activity and restore previous versions of a whiteboard.
      • Activity: Allows users to review changes, select a change to show where the change was made on the board, and see changes grouped by dates. 
      • Version: Allow users to preview and restore old whiteboard versions.
    • Grid: Helps users align and organize content on the canvas. There are 3 background options for whiteboard:
      • None: Displays a blank canvas without any visible gridlines. This can be useful for creating free-form drawings or designs.
      • Line Grid: Displays a grid of evenly spaced horizontal and vertical lines on the canvas. These lines can be helpful for aligning text, images, and other elements on the canvas.
      • Dot Grid: Displays a grid of evenly spaced dots on the canvas. This can be useful for creating precise drawings or diagrams that require precise measurements and alignment.
    • View: Enables users to see certain elements while working on a whiteboard, such as comments, collaborator cursors, alignment guides, gap guides, and object size guides.
    • Find: Performs a search and find text within a whiteboard, including text located within sticky notes, text fields, and shapes. 
    • Export: Allows users to export whiteboard content as a PDF, PNG, or CSV file.
    • Duplicate Board: Creates an exact copy of a whiteboard.
    • Help: Provides users with Help Center resources and information on whiteboard keyboard shortcuts to help them use the platform more effectively.
    • Leave Feedback: Directs users to a survey where they can provide detailed feedback about their experience with the whiteboard.
    • Report: Allows users to report any inappropriate content or behavior that they encounter while using the platform.
    • Lock Board: Temporarily prevents editors, commenters, and viewers from opening and editing a document, while owners and co-owners retain full editing functionality.
    • Save Page as Template: Saves a copy of a whiteboard page as a reusable template.
    • Clear Content: Removes or deletes existing information such as sticky notes votes.
      • Clear Votes: Removes or deletes the votes associated with sticky notes.
    • Move to Trash: Deletes a whiteboard.
    • About: Provides information about the version of the whiteboard application currently being used.
  • Timer icon : Allows users to set a countdown timer for a specified amount of time. Timers set outside meetings are not visible during meetings and timers set during meetings only affect users in the same meeting.
  • Laser icon : Enables easy highlighting and annotation without editing the document. This feature is designed to address the difficulty in following along while presenting content, especially when the canvas supports multiple content types and multiple users are editing the document at the same time.

Controls on the top-right section

  • Invite All to Follow Me icon: As a presenter, you can invite or require all participants to follow you in the Whiteboard presentation. This icon is only available for in-meeting whiteboards.
  • Binoculars icon: As a viewer, you can click the collaborators small profile pictures next to  the Invite All to Follow Me drop-down and then the Binoculars icon next to a participant to follow that participant. This icon is only available for in-meeting whiteboards.
  • Share button: Allows users to share their whiteboard with others in real-time.
  • Comment icon : Allows users to leave comments on a specific area or element of the whiteboard.

Controls on the bottom-right section

  • Undo icon : Undo the last action.
  • Redo icon : Redo the last action.
  • Zoom out icon : Zoom out from a specific area of the whiteboard.
  • Zoom in icon : Zoom in on a specific area of the whiteboard.
  • Zoom percentage icon : Sets the level of magnification or reduction of the whiteboard content on the screen.
  • Mini Map icon : Allow users to see where the content is located on their canvas and easily navigate to a specific area of the board. 
  • Page icon : Allow users to organize the content better, create additional space for collaboration, and provide a clear separation between different sections of whiteboard.

Controls when you right-click on the canvas

  • Paste: Allows users to insert or add copied or cut content from the clipboard onto the whiteboard canvas.
  • Add Sticky Note: Creates virtual sticky notes on the whiteboard canvas.
  • Add Text: Adds text directly onto the whiteboard canvas.
  • Add Shape: Adds predefined shapes to the whiteboard canvas.
  • Add Card: Creates and organizes content on individual cards that can be moved around the whiteboard canvas.
  • Add Comment: Allows users to add feedback or annotations to specific areas of the whiteboard canvas.
  • Snap Rotation: Can be turned on to allow users to quickly and easily align objects on the canvas to specific angles or orientations.
  • Snap to Grid: Can be turned on to allow users to easily align objects on the canvas to a predefined grid pattern.
  • Save Page as Template: Allows users to save a copy of a whiteboard page as a reusable template.

Zoom Community

Join the 250K+ other members in the Zoom Community! Login with your Zoom account credentials and start collaborating.