Alternative host has no way to start meetings, feature is ignored?

I’m trying to:

  • Create a meeting for user A as the host
  • Add user B as as an alternate host
  • Have user B sign into Zoom using user B’s email
  • Have user B start the meeting and host

This doesn’t seem possible.

  • If user B, logged in to Zoom’s desktop app, clicks the “join” link, Zoom flat out incorrectly shows the popup “This meeting has been ended by host”
  • If user B, logged in to Zoom’s desktop app, clicks the start_url link for the meeting, they join as a host, however the name shown is user A’s name, and the participant list shows User A (host, me), and User B’s Zoom app login credentials are completely ignored.

According to this post: Getting Alternate Host Start URL Via API - #3 by AAhmedPerdoceo by @tommy “they must be signed into their Zoom account and then start the meeting.” This doesn’t appear to work.

How am I supposed to use this feature? Or have the docs always been incorrect and there’s no way for an alternate host to start a meeting?

Hmm, I’m not sure what to believe yet as this seems to be undocumented behavior. I found this thread where @tommy offers different advice:

Currently the alternative host start_url is sent via email, and not retrievable via the API:

“When scheduling a meeting, the host can designate another Licensed user on the same account to be the alternative host. The alternative host can start the meeting on the host’s behalf. This user will receive an email notifying them that they’ve been added as an alternative host, with a link to start the meeting.”

This isn’t mentioned in the API docs nor is it mentioned that the start_url doesn’t work for the alternate host.

So is the following accurate?

  • The alternate host must ignore the start_url and must ignore the join link, which has a bug that reports the meeting is ended before it’s started, if the alternate host is logged into Zoom. (For anonymous Zoom users, the join link shows the waiting room as expected.)
  • The alternate host must only use the link that’s emailed to them

Hmm, it appears this feature still does not work at all. I followed these steps:

  • I created a meeting for host email A
  • I added an alternative_host email B via PATCH /meeting/:id
  • User B received the “you were added as an alternative host” email and clicked the “start meting” link, which looks something like
  • User B logged into zoom using user B’s email
  • User B gets the completely wrong message: “This meeting has been ended by host”

The meeting is still startable by the original start_url from the API response, even though the alternative host got the message saying that the meeting has ended.

Ironically, using the alternative host feature seems to** completely lock the alternative host out of the meeting.** Other non-logged-in users can still use the participant link.

After a very helpful support chat, I learned about this undocumented limitation:

Upon checking, there is actually no option to add an alternative host via instant meeting.

Even though the API allows you to create an instant meeting with alternate hosts, and even though it sends the alternate host an email with instructions on how to join, this feature flat out doesn’t work for instant meetings, and there is no mention of this in the docs.

I hope the docs will be updated, otherwise I hope my headbanging helps someone else who finds this.

Hi @glunken ,

Thank you for sharing your testing results and I will check this out as well. Can you share your support ticket number where you received this conclusion?


Hi @gianni.zoom this occurred over real-time support chat.