Browser Test for Students Considering Online Courses

(Note: this page is no longer updated)

You will need certain tools, such as an up-to-date web browser or a media player, to make the best use of your online courses. This Browser Test contains a few quick tests to make sure your browser can handle the demands of online learning.

Browser Version

If you are using a current browser version, you will not see a message immediately below this paragraph and before the heading "Plug-ins". In which case, you have a web browser that is adequate for your class. If you DO see a message about using an older browser, please follow one of the links and upgrade your software.

You are using an older browser which may not support many of the visual display elements used by your professor and the rest of the UMD website. Please upgrade your browser at one of the links below.

If you need to upgrade your browser version, you may do so for free at these sites:

Microsoft downloads

Netscape download

UMD browser downloads for Windows

UMD browser downloads for Macintosh


Plug-ins are small "helper" programs that are often used to present users with web-based interactive content. This section of the test will help determine if you have the plug-ins needed to run sections of your instructor's online course and determine if they are up-to-date.


Click this link to view a short physics lesson done in Flash.

If you are unable to navigate through the lesson on Torques and Moments of Force (it has a variety of pages and animated images), you need to download the Flash player at:


Go to Macromedia's own Shockwave player test site at:

If your computer does not have the updated version of the Shockwave player, the web page should notice that fact and offer to download it for you. When you have successfully downloaded and installed the player, you will be able to see the test boxes animate when you roll your mouse cursor over them.


Click here to start a short sample Quicktime movie.

If you do not hear music and see a blue Q drawn, you need to download and install the Quicktime movie player from Apple at:

Windows Media Player

Click here to start a short sample Windows Media Player movie.

If you do not see a short movie of a child coming down a slide, you need to download and install the Windows Media Player at: Choose the version that is appropriate for your computer and operating system.

RealOne Player

Click here to start a short sample of a RealOne movie. This is an introduction to a lesson done by Tom Bacig for one of his INI courses. If you do not see and hear a gentleman talking about the movie "Alien", you may need to download a new version of RealOne Player.

Download the free player by going to: Watch carefully which link you choose - make sure it is the FREE player and not Real Player Plus.

Adobe Reader

Click here to read an article in PDF format using Acrobat Reader.

If you are not able to access this file, you can download the FREE reader from Adobe at:


If you can see today's date and a motivational quote, you have Javascript enabled.

UMD Specific Services

Connecting and accessing Online Services

To use some of our online services, such as the Webdrop folder and Library electronic resources, you need to do one of two things:

If you are unable to do one of the two steps above (some service providers will not allow you to set up a proxy server), you must inform your professor, since there will be some resources and services you will not be able to access!

Webdrop folder

Faculty use the webdrop folder to allow students to submit work electronically without relying upon email. To test your ability to use this service, you will need to create a small text file and save it using RTF format. If you do not know how to save a file as Rich Text, consult your word processing program's Help menu.

Use these instructions for more information about how to use the webdrop folder.

Click this link to begin the web drop process for this test.


To try out the Test Pilot program, you can take one or both of these online assessments: the Online Suitability Self Assessment or the Online Learning Technology Skills Assessment. These assessments are meant to give you some guidance as to your readiness for this type of learning, but should only be taken as one guide - if you have questions or concerns, please be sure to talk to your instructor.