Screen recording options for those without a University Of Edinburgh UUN

It is likely that in the coming weeks and months, events which would ordinarily take place face to face will need to be moved online. For some events, some element of pre-recording a presentation will be required. Those with a University of Edinburgh UUN can use centrally supported tools such as Media Hopper Replay and Media Hopper Create. But for those external to the University, these recording applications won’t be available. I’ve therefore compiled a list of a few free screen recording options available to anyone with an internet connection.

Please note: we can’t provide support for these tools.

FlashBack Express

Ideal for recording games and capturing footage from a webcam

Platform: Windows

+ Well designed interface

+ Choice of output formats

+ Record from screen or webcam

You can record from your whole screen, a window, a selected area, or a webcam. Once you’ve finished, your recording will appear in a simple editor, where you can crop and trim it to suit your needs, then export it to YouTube, an FTP server, or your PC.

Nice extras: The recorder can automatically obscure passwords entered on screen, replace your silly wallpaper with a plain one, hide messy desktop icons, and highlight your mouse pointer to make it easier to follow.

Following a recent update, Flashback Express can export in WMV, AVI and MP4 formats, eliminating the need for a separate video converter, and it no longer requires a free license key for activation – just install the software and you’re ready to start recording.

Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder

An in-browser recorder more powerful than most desktop apps

Platform: Windows, macOS, Linux (in browser)

+ No time limits or watermarks

+ Lots of export options

+ Can record from webcams

If you want to record a presentation, software demonstration or tutorial, give Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder a try.

The first time you use Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder, you’ll be prompted to download a small launcher application. You’ll then be provided with a control bar packed with more options than you’ll find in most desktop screen recording software. You can capture footage from your desktop or a webcam, and record audio from your PC, microphone, both or neither.

You can record the whole screen, select an area manually or choose one of the preset resolutions.

Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder also offers customizable keyboard shortcuts for speed and convenience. You can choose whether or not to include the cursor in the recording and take your pick from a range of output formats including MP4, WMV, AVI, MOV and many more. You can even add annotations during the recording.

Once you’re done, you can save the recording as a video file or GIF, upload it directly to YouTube or Vimeo, or send it to Google Drive or Dropbox. You can also edit the clip. Selecting this option will download an additional component – Apowersoft Video Editor – which lets you make simple adjustments before exporting your video in your preferred format.

Note that the ‘Download desktop version’ button links to a program called Apowersoft Screen Recorder Pro. This is a trial version of a premium application, and is more limited than Online Screen Recorder.


A browser-based free screen recorder with a lot to offer

Platform: Windows, macOS, ChromeOS (in browser)

+ Supports captions

+ Can zoom while recording

– Videos are watermarked

– Maximum length 15 minutes

Screencast-O-Matic is another browser-based free screen recorder, and a very capable one at that. Recordings are limited to 15 minutes in length, but you can record as many clips as you like, zoom while recording, trim your recorded clips, add captions, save them to your desktop, YouTube or the cloud, share a video link, or add one of 30 royalty-free music tracks.

Hit ‘Start recording for free’, followed by ‘Launch free recorder’. As with Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder, you’ll be prompted to download and install a small web launcher, after which the screen recorder will launch. Prepare your screen and adjust the size of the recording window to suit your needs (it can record the whole screen or just a selected area), then hit the red button. You can capture audio from your PC or a microphone, and record footage from your screen, a webcam or both.


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