Setting a Virtual Background in Zoom

Last modified 9/20/2023

Before you begin

First make sure your computer meets the system requirements for using Virtual background. You can do this by going to this Zoom Support article: System requirements for Virtual Background.


  • Make sure you are using a solid background. Preferentially, you want to use a green background or a green screen. 
  • Make sure you are using uniform lighting.
  • Do not wear clothing the same color as your background.
  • Higher quality cameras will give better results in virtual backgrounds.

Zoom Settings

Before you are able to use Zoom Virtual backgrounds, you need to make sure they are enabled in your settings. Follow the steps below to enable this setting:

  1. Navigate to

  2. Login to Zoom.

  3. In the Navigation Menu select Settings.

  4. Select the Meeting tab within Settings.

  5. Scroll down to the section “In Meeting (Advanced).”

  6. Find the Virtual Background section and turn on the toggle bar for Virtual Background

    a. You have the option to also checkmark “Allow use of videos for virtual backgrounds” if you want the option to use a video in your virtual background (Figure 1).

    Figure 1:
    Toggle Switch for Virtual Backgrounds

Getting Started

After you have a setup you feel will work with Zoom Virtual Background and have made sure that they are turned on in your settings, follow the steps below to use Zoom Virtual Backgrounds.

  1. Sign into the Zoom Desktop Client.

  2. Select your profile picture.

  3. Select Settings.

  4. Select Virtual Background.

  5. Checkmark the “I have a green screen” box, if you have one set up.

  6. Select one of Zoom's preloaded backgrounds or select the + symbol to add your own background image or video.

  7. If you no longer wish to use a virtual background, choose the option None.


You may be prompted to download the package for virtual background without a green screen. If this pops up, select the Download button to download the package. This package only needs to be downloaded once.

Illinois State University Backgrounds

The CTLT has some custom virtual Illinois State University backgrounds that you can find here.

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