.txt files in Blackboard

Need to distribute .txt files to your students in Blackboard? When you add them as Files in Blackboard 9.1, when students click on them, a new window or tab will open with the data. Blackboard support suggests the following workaround:

The reason the .TXT file opens in the browser and does not use a popup for download is because it does not have to. A .TXT file is in plain text, there is no formatting required or implanted in the document. All browsers support plain text documents for display purposes. The other file types would require us to have to create a plugin for each document type. For example PDF’s can be displayed inline in older versions of Blackboard and browsers because there is an Adobe plugin that has been downloaded to the browser (not something that is built in).

The workaround for this issue is to attach the file to something. Instead of going to Build Content > File, your instructor should select Build Content > Item. Within the item you will have two ways to attach a file to the item. When this displays in the content area the students can either click the link to the item and view it in the browser or right click the link and “Save Link As,” to save the file to their computer. There are no patches or fixes for this because it is not a product issue this feature functions in this way because of the browser. Another option is to change the extension type as you can tell that PDF, XML, DOCX, etc. require the file to be downloaded to view.

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