Using a cloud workspace in Guided Projects

Guided Projects are hands-on educational experiences focused on teaching a single skill or technique through step-by-step instruction and practice in a cloud workspace. Use this article to learn about and troubleshoot that cloud workspace.

Note: Guided Projects and cloud workspaces vary based on their content and how your instructor configures them. To learn about the specifics of your project’s cloud workspace, review the materials your instructor provides.

Access the cloud workspace

In your project assignment page, check I agree to use this tool responsibly and click the Open Tool button to access your cloud workspace. You must be logged in to Coursera for this to work, so always use this button to access the cloud workspace.

Adjust the layout

In the cloud workspace you’ll see two sections. The desktop where you work is on the left and your instructor’s pre-recorded video is on the right. Use the buttons to the top-right of each section to control how they appear:

  • Click the box with two arrows button above your desktop or your instructor’s video to have that section fill the whole screen. Click the button that looks like the two section layout to return to that layout.
  • Click the 1024 x 768 button to select the resolution of your desktop.
  • Click the % (Fit) button to resize your instructor’s video.

To resize the amount of screen each section takes up, hover between the two sections until your cursor changes shape then click and drag.

By default the cloud workspace shows a keyboard tray at the bottom with a record of your instructor’s keystrokes. To hide it, click the horizontal, gray button right above the keyboard tray.

Manage project files

To access your project’s files, click Files above your instructor’s video. In this tab you can download files from the cloud workspace to keep after you’ve finished a project and upload your own files to use in the project.

To download, click Show All and navigate to the file you’d like. Click its name to bring up a download prompt. To upload, click Upload files to your cloud desktop and select a file. The size limit for uploaded files is 100mb.

If you need to upload a larger file or you’re seeing an error when trying to upload your file, use a file sharing service like Upload the file in your own browser, then navigate to the unique file link in your cloud desktop to download it.

Leave or pause a session

If you need to pause a session less than two hours, leave the tab open. When you return, click the Continue with the project button to resume. The cloud workspace will preserve your session and the work you’ve done.

If you plan to pause for longer than a few hours, download your files first. If a session is paused for too long, the cloud workspace resets to preserve resources.

When you’re finished with your project, download any files you want to keep, then click the Leave Session button in the top-right.

Logging in to personal accounts

If you need to access a file, save work, or do anything else that requires access to a personal account during a project, you can log in to that account on the cloud desktop as long as you log out between sessions. Our virtual workspace doesn’t share cloud desktops between users, and it disposes of each desktop completely after you complete a project or are inactive for two days.

Unresponsive desktop

If your cloud desktop freezes, becomes unresponsive, or you’re stuck at a “Connecting …” screen, close the tab and reopen the cloud workspace using the Open Tool button in your Guided Project’s project assignment page.

If the issue persists, close the tab and check your internet connection for any issues. Once you’ve resolved any connection issues or found a new, stronger connection, reopen the cloud workspace.

Keyboard shortcuts

Use these keyboard shortcuts to control and edit your cloud workspace:

  • Enter - Cursor and keyboard will control cloud desktop
  • Ctrl+Ctrl - Cursor and keyboard will stop controlling cloud desktop
  • Left Arrow - Go 15s back
  • Right Arrow - Go 15s forward
  • - - Decrease the playback speed
  • + - Increase the playback speed
  • c - Toggle closed captions
  • p - Expand/collapse the instructions panel
  • f - Toggle fullscreen of the video player
  • m - Mute/unmute
  • Space - Play/pause
  • Down Arrow - Decrease the video’s volume by 10%
  • Up Arrow - Increase the video’s volume by 10%
  • ? - Show a popup with the keyboard shortcuts

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