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RooLabs Online →  Frequently Asked Questions


Frequently Asked Questions

The RooLabs Online portal provides real time information regarding capacities of student computing labs located on campus, how many machines are currently in use in each lab, and provides free remote access to lab software. You can plan ahead before making a trip to a lab, or simply connect to the lab from the convenience of your own device. Connecting remotely to a lab in RooLabs Online will be a similar experience to using an on-campus lab. If you have access to a general lab or departmental lab on-campus that participates in RooLabs Online, you can remotely access ALL of the same software via RooLabs Online.

Roo Labs Online


What is the difference between RooLabs Online and UMKC Remote Labs?

UMKC students can remotely access ALL of the on-campus General Use Lab software via RooLabs Online. If your department participates in RooLabs Online, you will also be able to access ALL software avaialble in that on-campus departmental lab. A much broader selection of software is avaiable, however performance of individual applications over remote access will vary.


UMKC Remote Labs offers remote access to a small subset of curated software compared to RooLabs Online. The selected software has been optimized specifically for remote access. Software is organized by UMKC Departments and does not correspond to any specific on-campus offerings. More information is available on the Remote Labs FAQ

Who can access RooLabs Online?

RooLabs Online are currently available to all actively enrolled UMKC students. Your specific department or degree program will dictacte which Labs you have access to.


What do I need to connect to RooLabs Online?

To access RooLabs Online you must have the following:

  • A high speed Internet connection
  • A computer or device with a compatible Remote Desktop client. Minimum version requirements are listed here. For best results, UMKC highly recomends always running the most up to date version.
  • Linux users also have the additional requirement of needing to use a VPN connection. Instructions can be found here.


How do I connect to RooLabs Online?

Detailed step-by-step instructions for connecting can be found here.


What software is available in RooLabs Online?

Students have remote access to all software available in the General Use Labs from RooLabs Online. If you have access to a participating on-campus departmental lab which features additional software or specialized software, you will have access to all of the same software in RooLabs Online. A comprehensive list is available if you are not sure which labs contain the software you need.


Where can I save my files?

When you are logged into RooLabs Online, it is recommended you open and save files from your Q:\ drive or other UMKC Campus file share. This will guarantee RooLabs Online applications have high speed access to your data. When you have completed your work, you can move your data to a cloud storage location or your local computer.

If you are connecting from a Windows computer, RooLabs Online will automatically mount your local hard drives, flash drives, and other storage media. Accessing your local Mac hard drive from within RooLabs Online requires additonal manual steps. Accessing local storage from a Linux, Android, or iOS device is not supported.


What happens if I get disconnected? How long can I stay logged in?

If you accidently disconnect from RooLabs Online, or experience a brief interruption in Internet connectivity, your session will remain active for 10 minutes. If you reconnect in that time window, all of your applications and data will still be open on the screen. Idle sessions will automatically be disconnected after 30 minutes of inactivity.


What factors affect the performance of RooLabs Online?

Performance is heavily dependent on your internet connection. 100 Mbps is the recommended speed, but your experience will benefit from a faster connection. Keep in mind, the package sold by your Internet Service Provider is the "theoretical maximum" speed you can achieve. This does not neccessarily reflect your average speed. Sharing your Internet connection with streaming services like Netflix, online gaming services, and peer-to-peer file sharing services will significanly decrease RooLabs Online performance. If you are experiencing slowness, conncting to the UMKC VPN will generally decrease latency and increase performance.

You may notice there is sometimes a delay when you first connect to a Lab. This is largely due to measures that ensure the security of RooLabs Online and the privacy of your data and your user session.


How secure is RooLabs Online?

RooLabs Online uses an encrypted connection to provide secure access to campus resources. This means all communications from your computer to RooLabs Online endpoints are encrypted, making it difficult for someone to hijack the session or view data.


Can I print from RooLabs Online?

Yes, printing is available in RooLabs Online if you have a printer installed locally on your Windows computer. RooLabs Online uses a universal print driver to connect to the printer you have installed locally on your computer. Because the driver is not an exact match for your printer, there may be differences between what is displayed on the screen and what is printed.


Tips for Mac Users

  • Mac users need to install Microsoft Remote Desktop 10.0 (or higher)
  • Accessing your local Mac hard drive from within RooLabs Online requires additonal manual steps.
  • When using RooLabs Online, you may find that your Dock is in your way. You can quickly turn on Dock hiding by going to Apple -> Dock -> Turn Hiding On. You can also change your Dock position from this location or choose Dock Preferences for more advanced options.
  • When you are connected to the Remote Lab, remember you are now using a Windows machine, so your Mac keyboard shortcuts such as Command (Apple) + C and Command + V for copy and paste no longer work. Many common commands are similar, but you should use the Control key (such as Control + C and Control + V to copy and paste) instead.
  • When ending your Remote Lab session, always be sure to go to Start -> Log Off. Please do not just quit Remote Desktop. Doing so ties up resources and prevents other users from logging onto that machine.

Tips for Linux Users

  • Linux users need Windows compatible Remote Desktop software to connect. Many client options are available for free and one may or may not be included with the Linux distribution you are using.
  • Off campus Linux users have the additional requirement of needing to use a VPN connection. Instructions can be found at http://www.umkc.edu/is/support/services/vpn/linux/.
  • When you are connected to RooLabs Online, remember you are now using a Windows machine, so your Linux keyboard shortcuts will not work. Many common commands are similar (such as Control + C and Control + V to copy and paste).
  • When ending your Remote Lab session, always be sure to go to Start -> Log Off. Please do not just quit Remote Desktop. Doing so ties up resources and prevents other users from logging onto that machine.