How to Mute/unmute participants in a Zoom meeting

During a meeting, the host or co-host can manage the participants that are in the meeting, including muting and unmuting them as needed in order to manage background noises and distractions. If the host has not prevented participants from unmuting themselves, then all participants are also able to mute or unmute themselves.

It is not possible for the host to unmute other participants without the consent of those participants, for reasons of security and privacy. During a meeting, the host has the option to either ask the participants to unmute themselves with the Ask All to Unmute feature, or the host can use the Request permission to unmute participants setting, which will provoke a pre-approval request from members of the meeting to be unmuted by the host.

Prerequisites for muting/unmuting participants in a meeting

  • In the meeting, the host has the right to grant co-host permission (set by the host)
  • to speak unmuted, using the following procedure:
    • For the desktop client of Zoom, you need version 5.2.1 or higher for Windows, macOS, or Linux
    • To use Zoom on your smartphone, you will need version 5.2.1 or higher for Android or iOS
  • If you do not want to be muted, you can revoke your consent here:
    • If you’re using the Zoom desktop client, it must be version 5.2.1 or later and running on Windows, Mac OS, or Linux
    • Linux
    • Linux; if you’re using the Zoom mobile app for iOS, version 5.6.0 or later;

Muting/unmuting a specific participant

  1. Sign in to the Zoom desktop client by clicking the button below.
  2. Click on the “Start Meeting” button.
  3. Go to the meeting controls and select “Participants”.
  4. Click on the participant you want to change the settings for and choose one of the following:
  • Ask to Unmute:During the presentation, a prompt should appear asking the participant to turn off their mute. In the prompt, the participant will find an option to unmute.
  • Unmute: A participant can be unmuted immediately without having a prompt displayed.
  • Note: If you select to unmute pre-approved consent, then this option can only be selected if the participant has consented to be unmuted.
  • Mute: The participant will be muted.

Muting all participants

All participants in the meeting, as well as all new participants joining during the meeting, can be muted by the host or co-host.

  1. In the meeting controls, you will find a tab called Participants.
  2. Then Click Mute All.
  3. By clicking Mute All, you will be able to muffle all current and new participants.
  4. (Optional) If you wish to allow conference participants to unmute themselves at any time during the meeting please check Allow participants to unmute themselves.
See also  Managing Zoom Contact Center inboxes

Asking all participants to unmute

Besides asking the hosts to unmute themselves, the co-hosts can also ask all participants to do so. As a consequence, the participant can choose whether they wish to become unmuted or remain muted when the time comes.

  1. To get started, launch Zoom on the desktop.
  2. Click the Meetings button.
  3. In the meeting controls, click the Participants button.
  4. Under the You Can Unmute All box, click Ask All to Unmute to unmute everyone.

You will be presented with a choice of either unmuting or staying muted for all other participants.

Enabling pre-approved consent to be unmute

As part of the scheduling process, when you click on the Request permission for unmuting participants option, you can enable this option. This will display a prompt when a participant joins the meeting once this option is enabled. This prompt will ask for permission to allow them to be muted or unmuted by the host. Once permission has been granted by a host, it will apply to all future meetings that the host schedules. The same setting will also be available to a group or account.


The following procedure will allow the pre-approved consent to unmute feature to be enabled for all users in the account:

  1. As an administrator, you are able to edit account settings by logging in to the Zoom web portal.
  2. Select Account Management on the left-hand side navigation menu. Click Account Settings to change account settings.
  3. Under the Meeting (Advanced) tab, navigate to the Request permission to unmute option and confirm that it is turned on (under the Request permission to unmute option).
    Note: It is possible to enable the setting if it is already disabled. To do this, you need to select the Turn On option from the verification dialog that appears.
  4. For optional settings, click the lock icon, and then click Lock to confirm the setting. If you want this setting to be mandatory for all users in your account, click the lock icon again.
    Note : 
    For users to see this option when scheduling appointments, they must be using client/app version 5.2.1 or higher.


For all members of a specific group to have access to the pre-approved consent to unmute feature, follow the steps below:

  1. If you have been assigned the right to edit user groups on Zoom, you will be able to log in to the Zoom web portal as an administrator.
  2. Simply click the User Management link in the navigation menu.
  3. To access the meeting settings, click the Meeting tab on the name of the group.
  4. Make sure that the setting for Request permission to unmute (under the In Meeting (Advanced) section) is set to Yes (under the Meeting tab) and that it has been enabled.
    Note : 

    • When the setting is disabled, you can enable it by clicking on the toggle. If a confirmation dialog appears, select On to verify the setting has been enabled.
    • The account level setting is locked, so if the account settings icon is grayed out, they must be changed at the account level.
  5. For additional safety, you may make the lock icon mandatory for all users of your account by clicking the lock icon, and then clicking Lock to confirm your settings.


For your own use, you can enable the pre-approved consent to unmute feature by following the steps below:

  1. Log in to Zoom’s web portal by using your email address and password.
  2. Go to the Settings tab in the navigation bar.
  3. When you are sitting the Meeting tab, search for the option “Request permission to unmute” (under the subsection titled In Meeting (Advanced)) and verify that it is enabled.
    Note : 

    • This setting can be enabled by clicking the toggle button if it is disabled. After you click the toggle button, a verification dialog will appear. Click Turn On to confirm the change.
    • There may be a case where the setting is grayed out due to being locked either at the account or group level and changing it at the level that locked it is necessary.

Using pre-approved consent to be unmute

  1. Make an appointment to meet.
  2. Under Meeting Options, you have the option to ask permission to unmute the participants in a meeting.
    During the meeting, attendees will be asked to provide consent by signing the consent form to allow the host to operate the mute function.

Having provided consent to be unmuted, you can unmute the participants on a case-by-case basis from the list of participants if that is the scenario they permit.

Note :
As soon as a host has given consent, any future meetings arranged with the host and with this setting enabled shall automatically be regarded as pre-approved meetings. When this setting is not set, the host will have to request that each participant unmutes themselves at the end of each meeting.

You will see the regular Ask to Unmute / Mute options in the participants list in case the participants have not provided consent, however.

Revoking consent to be unmuted (participant)

In the client settings as well as in a meeting, participants can revoke this consent at any time.

Windows | macOS | Linux

Client settings

  1. The Zoom desktop client can be accessed by logging in.
  2. You will be able to access the Zoom settings by clicking on your profile picture.
  3. Please click on the audio icon.
  4. Select Manage from the drop-down menu under People who can unmute you. The hosts that you have consented to in the past will be listed on the screen.
  5. If the consent has been revoked, select the host from the list and then click the Remove button.

In-meeting controls

The consent that you gave when you joined a meeting can be revoked as long as you are in the meeting.

      1. You have to sign into Zoom’s desktop application.
      2. Once you’re logged in, you can join any meeting and unmute yourself.
      3. Select Mute/Ummute by clicking the up arrow * that appears next to it.
      4. From the Unmute People list, choose the person that you wish to unmute.
      5. You can revoke the consent of a host by selecting it from the list and then clicking Remove.


  1. Sign up for the Zoom app on your mobile device.
  2. Tap on the Settings button.
  3. Select Meetings from the list.
  4. On the Audio tab, tap on the People who can remove your mute.
    There will be a list of hosts whom you have given consent to in the past.
  5. You can revoke the consent by tapping Remove next to the name of the host you want to remove the consent for.
    If you would like to revoke this consent, you will have to leave the meeting and rejoin it.