Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI)

Many institutions require external software tools during an exam. This has to be done in a safe and controlled manner (that is, in lockdown mode/Safe Exam Browser). Virtual Desktop Environment (VDI) allows for the possibility to use external software and tools, e.g. writing answers in Excel (or other programs) during an exam, and uploading the file into Inspera in an Upload Assignment question type. 

Information: This feature is in BETA, requires activation and requires the institution to provide a VDI.


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  • The VDI solution is not provided by Inspera, so the institution must provide a VDI that can be used in a normal browser over https.
  • The VDI functionality must be activated for your institution by contacting Service Desk or contact person at Inspera. 
  • Students must have a user name and password to authenticate in the VDI.
  • It must be possible to copy text into the VDI.
  • Chromebooks are not supported at the moment.
  • The VDI is intended for use in SEB on Windows and Mac computers, as it brings up two windows inside the lockdown mode. The mode without SEB displays the VDI in an iframe that might not work with the VDI you are using.


Enable VDI for a test 

The VDI can be enabled by the planner in Deliver when setting up a test.

  1. Scroll down to the Exam day settings
  2. Click the Enable VDI checkbox
  3. Add a VDI URL to your own vdi solution




Candidate experience with VDI

The VDI solution only works on PC or Mac computers at the moment. It can not be used on Chromebooks.

Information: Depending on what VDI solution your institution uses, the look and process may vary a bit. In this example below we use Appstream as our VDI solution. 


Starting a test with VDI - for candidate

  1. Sign in to Inspera Assessment as usual. The test will show up under the "My tests" tab.
  2. Click Click here to get ready
  3. If you do not already have SEB installed on your computer, download SEB by clicking "Download". If you already have SEB installed on your computer, click Start test in Safe Exam Browser. (Learn more about how to install SEB)
  4. Enter the SEB password. (Two windows will now open.)
  5. Start the test in VDI by clicking Start exam on Virtual Machine (left window)3.jpg
  6. Log into the VDI solution with email and password (right window)4.jpg
    (We use Appstream in this example. If you use another VDI solution, it may look a bit different.)
  7. Click Copy the URL to this test (left window)5.jpg
  8. A confirmation box will pop up, confirming that the url was successfully copied. Close this box to move on.
  9. Click the copy symbol in the upper menu of the right window and Paste to remote session.
    If using another VDI solution than Appstream, then this might be located somewhere else.
  10. Paste the url to the text box that pops up, and then also paste it to the browser.
  11. You can now do the test!


Doing a test with VDI - for candidate

When you have sign into Inspera and successfully start the test in the VDI, the test can be done as usual in the browser, but there will also be some functionalities available in the VDI which differ from a regular Inspera test without VDI. As you may be using another VDI than the one we have used in this article, (AppStream) we can not provide specific information about how the navigation experience will be for your candidates. Here are some instructions of what to think about when doing a test in VDI: 

  • The candidate can use approved apps in the VDI, by using the upper menu in the right window. It may be a good idea to include instructions about how to use the apps and what apps are available in the Inspera test. In the example in this article, FireFox, LibreOfficeCalc and Visual Studio Code are available.
  • The candidate can see notifications by clicking the bell symbol to the upper right of the left window. Only messages in the active session is displayed. 
  • The candidate can change settings via the gear symbol to the upper right of the left window

Submitting a test with VDI - for candidate

  1. When the candidate has finished the test, it can be submitted as usual by clicking Submit at the end of the test
  2. Quit Safe Exam Browser by clicking the bottom right on/off button


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