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Troubleshooting SumTotal Issues

Sometimes when trying to complete your SumTotal training you run into complications, such as the screen staying in loading, the video not playing, or your home screen appearing blank. These issues can be frustrating, especially if you are in a rush. Therefore, below are some step-to-step guidelines to ensure you complete your training successfully when these issues do arise.

Turning Off Pop-up Blockers

To successfully complete an online training, you must have your pop-up blockers turned off in the web browser you are completing your training in. Without your pop-up blockers turned off, you will stay on the loading page without your training ever appearing. To turn off your pop-up blockers please follow the instructions below based on the web browser you will be using for your training.

Internet Explorer

Turn your pop-up blocker off in Internet Explorer, by selecting Tools, located either on the right upper left corner of the page or in the toolbar at the top of the page. Next, select Internet Options and under the Privacy tab uncheck the box, "Turn on Pop-up Blocker."

Google Chrome

To turn your pop-up blocker off in Google Chrome, select the Chrome menu located on the browser toolbar in the upper right hand corner of the page. Next, select Settings and press the Show advanced settings link, located at the bottom of the page. In the "Privacy" section of the page, select the Content Settings button. In the "Pop-ups" section, select "Allow all sites to show pop-ups." You may also Customize permissions for specific websites by clicking, Manage exceptions.


Open the Safari web browser and select the Safari menu. From here, choose Preferences and select Security. Next, uncheck the box, "Block Pop-up windows" to allow pop-ups.

Mozilla Firefox

At the top of the Firefox window, click on the Firefox button and then select Options. From here, select the Content panel. Uncheck, "Block pop-up windows" to disable the pop-up blocker altogether. You also have the option to customize the pop-up feature, by selecting the Exceptions button. Here, you can include a list of sites that you want to allow pop-ups, instead of allowing pop-ups from all sites.

Choosing a Web Browser

In most cases, it does not matter which web browser you use to complete your SumTotal training. However, for those that use Internet Explorer, the newest version, Internet Explorer 10, is not compatible with SumTotal. Therefore, to know if you are using Internet Explorer 10, go to your Tools, located at the right corner of your page, and select About Internet Explorer. This will show you what version of Internet Explorer you have. If you do have version 10, there is a compatibility option you will need to select to ensure success in completing your training.

Compatibility View for Internet Explorer

Compatibility view is an option for Internet Explorer users when a website they are viewing does not seem to look right such as the menu items not appearing or the information looks out-of-place. The reason you are having these issues is because SumTotal was designed for an earlier version of Internet Explorer rather than version 10. To fix this issue, users may select compatibility view, which is located at the top of your webpage next to the URL address, and it will look like a broken sheet of paper. By selecting this icon, the website will be displayed as if you were viewing them in a previous version of Internet Explorer, which will often correct display problems. (You may have to select the Compatibility View icon several times to view the website correctly.)

Playing Videos in SumTotal

There are many issues that may cause your video to not play correctly during a training. It can be quite frustrating when you need your training completed, so here are a few things that might be the cause of your video not playing correctly.

Internet Connection

Sometimes instead of a video playing, your video will stay on a black screen. Most of the videos you will be playing are large files, and to make sure they download successfully, the internet connection must be strong.


When starting up your training, your computer may ask you to download plug-ins in order to play your video. Make sure you download all plug-ins that are suggested to you, and restart your computer afterwards. Restarting your computer will activate the plug-ins you just downloaded.

Video Compatibility

There are numerous video file formats available including, .mp4, .wmv, .flv, .avi, and many more. When creating your trainings for you, we at HR Systems try very hard to choose the correct format that will successfully play on your computer, but of course there are always going to be compatibility issues causing the video to not play correctly. For example, Mac and Windows will never fully get along. Therefore, videos that play for Windows users will most likely not play for Mac users, and vice versa. (The majority of our videos that we create are going to be compatible with Windows users, since it is what most Texas Tech employees have available to them.) Therefore, if you find your video not playing for you after double checking your internet connection, downloading your plug-ins, and restarting your computer, you may have a compatibility issue. This can be solved by downloading a cross-platform multimedia player, which will allow you to play different media types successfully on your computer.

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