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Use Zoom virtual background sharing (Powerpoint) with two monitors


I have the following setup:


  • MacBook
  • TV connected to MacBook via HDMI
  • Remote Presenter (which I still have to buy - the Logitech R500 which I used so far has no control for Muting/Unmuting and also does not work when used in Zoom virtual background sharing) 


How can I share a Powerpoint presentation during a meeting with only the slides in full view mode on the TV (for all physical attendees in my room) and the Zoom window on my MacBook containing

  • the attendee list
  • mute/unmute button (ideally controllable through my remote presenter)
  • my slides (controllable through my remote presenter)?


I have tried two approaches so far - but both of them failed:

  1. Starting (i.e. playing) my presentation in full view mode on the TV and sharing the screen of my TV in Zoom (as described in the official zoom support). This works fine for both the physical people in my room as well as my online attendees. But on my MacBook this creates both, the presenter view of Powerpoint (which in itself is fine) and the Zoom control menu ribbon making it two separate applications which is the problem. Once Zoom is the active window I can use Shortcuts (e.g. CMD+Shift+A to mute/unmute) but I cannot advance the slides further. Likewise once Powerpoint is the active application, I cannot use Zoom shortcuts anymore. This makes everything very cumbersome. This is what it looks like: Approach 1 - two seperate applications.jpg
  2. Sharing my Powerpoint presentation through virtual backgrounds. This solves the problem of two separate applications but it does not let me show my presentation in full view mode on the TV anymore. Instead I have to mirror my displays to show my presentation to my physical attendees. This way they also see all the other information (attendee list, Zoom control ribbon, slide preview etc.) which I do not want. This is what it looks like:
  3. Approach 2 - using virtual backgrounds.jpg


Am I missing something or doing something wrong? How can I achieve what I described above?

P.S. If you have a recommendation on a remote presenter that lets me both, change slides and mute/unmute, that would be great!


Community Champion | Customer
Community Champion | Customer

These are real-world problems, for sure. Application focus or the loss of can be a real pain.

I know you didn't share with us two computers but that would be the simplest and least expensive solution if you already own another computer to add to the mix. Just have the 2nd computer join the meeting with the sole purpose of sharing when that time comes. Plug your clicker or use the keyboard on that 2nd computer to advance your slides. Because that's all the 2nd computer is doing you will always reliably be able to advance the slides.


Trying to accomplish this all on single computer can be a challenge. Not impossible, but a challenge.


Other approaches could include...


  1. Purchase an license, install the PPT plugin, and control your slides from your phone, tablet, computer, and have your friend advance them from their home around the world.
  2. A competitor to the above would be
  3. Purchase a DSAN PerfectCue solution. Not cheap, but would do the trick.

If you find this information helpful, please click on "Accept as Solution".

If you have further questions, please reply, we're happy to help.

Jeff Widgren | Host of the Zoom Test Kitchen


Thank you for your suggestions and help!


Yes, this is what I have done in the past. Join the meeting on my iPad and use it to share slides. But it is not ideal as I always have to use another device which would otherwise be available for different things (e.g. note taking).


I am really wondering, if I am the only person requesting such functionality? To me my setup seems to be such a typical everyday scenario - sharing a presentation with both physical and online people that I am really baffled that Zoom does not provide any solution for it (I mean it would be as "easy" as simply having some button which allows to just output the shared virtual background to another screen - but maybe that is harder to implement than I imagine).

Thank you for the other solutions you provided (i.e. online slide control). I guess I enjoy having a physical control interface with real buttons especially when I am nervous (like on a remote presenter). Also, I would not want to keep a phone in my hands all the time making it look like I am about to answer a text or go on a call. 


Another idea came to my mind: Do you know if there is a remote presenter which lets me advance slides and mute/unmute Zoom without pulling focus? I know that this is technically possible (e.g. when I push the play/pause function key on my MacBook, it will trigger the last played media without putting focus on the respective application like "Music" or "Chrome"). Even if there is no such remote available, I might be able to remap buttons (using something like Karabiner-Elements) in order to mute/unmute zoom without pulling application focus. If this was possible i might be able to go with my first approach. What do you think?