Common problems with SEB

  • Since does not control or develop Safe Exam Browser (it is a completely separate software), our ability to solve problems on our end is limited. With that in mind, we have listed common problems and solutions with SEB below to make it easier for you as a teacher.

    If an error is not listed below, you can read more on Safe Exam Browser's homepage.


    1. SEB is locked with a red screen and asks for a quit password.

    The password can be found in the exam's high-security mode settings:


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    This happens if SEB were forced to quit (due to, for example, a hard restart or the battery running out on the student's device). Alternatively, it could be due to a program running in the background, which is interpreted as a cheating attempt by SEB. If the same device gets locked on a regular basis, check all active programs/apps on the computer and also check if any of the programs are configured to auto-start.

    Note that if SEB has been started in any other way than by taking an exam on, our password will not work. Safe Exam Browser is used by many different exam platforms and is entirely separate from

    2. The student gets an error message: "Session Start Error: SEB failed to start a new session! Please consult the log files for more information."

    The easiest way to solve this problem is to restart the computer.


    If it still doesn't work, you can find more information about the issue in the SEB log files in the following folder on the device:


    3. Error message: SEB is not configured

    If the student starts the program manually, SEB will notify that it is not yet configured. This is normal, and SEB should not be configured as this is done automatically once the student enters an exam on

    4. The student gets an error message saying that SEB is not installed in the Applications Folder.

    SEB for macOS must be installed in the Applications folder. It will not start if placed anywhere else.  

    Sometimes there is a Applications folder in the user's home directory, this is not the correct one. It should be placed in the system's Applications folder. You can control this by right-clicking on the folder and making sure it is placed directly under Macintosh HD.

    5. The student gets an error message: "Service Error: Failed to completely lockdown the computer."

    A security or anti-virus program (e.g. 360 Security Guard) is blocking SEB from locking the computer, causing a lock-out error.

    Try to disable the antivirus program or allow SEB as an exception. Here is more information about this issue from the SEB support site: 

    It can also help if the student creates a new, clean user account on the computer and installs SEB for this user.


    6. The student gets an error message: "Prohibited Display Configuration: The active display configuration is not permitted. Please consult the log files for more information. SEB will now shut down..."

    The active display configuration is not allowed. The SEB version only allows internal screens. Try to uninstall SEB and install the recommended SEB version from the SEB installation page.


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    If there are other problems with SEB, the best option is usually to uninstall SEB and install it again. You can find our recommended SEB version and test your installation here:

    What versions of lockdown software are supported?

    Test your installation here

    If you experience any other problems than those listed above - please notify us. We are also interested in step-by-step solutions if you have had a problem and managed to solve it. Then we can give advice to other users facing the same problem. 

    If it is impossible to run SEB on the student's computer, you might want to let the student take the exam in a regular browser instead. You choose this exam setting when you create or edit the exam.