Drawing tools are unavailable

You may see a message in the Screencastify popup that says our drawing and annotation tools are unavailable on your current tab, even if you have enabled Show Drawing Tools in the popup under "More Options":

Our drawing tools are injected into the website you are currently visiting, essentially by being added to the existing HTML. In order for that to happen, you'll need to record on a "live" website.

Here are some examples of pages that are not live websites (even though they look the same):

  • Blank new tabs
  • Any URLs that begin with "chrome://" (including all pages in the Screencastify extension)
  • The Chrome Web Store

These pages are actually part of the Chrome application and are not technically live websites.

You are also not able to use our drawing tools outside of a Chrome website, such as on a PowerPoint presentation or a PDF in Adobe Reader. 

To use Drawing Tools in Powerpoint

Even though the Screencastify drawing tools aren't available in Powerpoint, when you're showing a presentation, you can draw on-screen with a PowerPoint digital pen to emphasize a point or show connections. Here's a written walkthrough from Microsoft and a helpful video from Marysusan Noll:

To use Drawing Tools in Google Slides

In this video, we'll show you how to record a full-screen Google Slides presentation in a way that still allows you to embed your webcam and use our drawing tools!

To use Screencastify Drawing Tools on a Website

Start a tab or desktop recording on any normal webpage (e.g. https://google.com or https://screencastify.com) and you will see our toolbar appear in the bottom left corner of your tab.

screencastify drawing tools toolbar

If you have started a tab or desktop recording on a live website and you're still not seeing our drawing toolbar, please ensure that Show Drawing Tools is enabled under "More Options".