Technical Information

eFiling Hardware and Software Requirements

  1. Personal Computer: You will need a personal computer running Windows or a 64-bit Apple Macintosh with operating system OS x10.5 or higher and the Java plug in enabled. Please see the Alert for Apple Macintosh ECF Filers for more information on filing with a Mac. If your system does not satisfy these requirements, you may apply to the clerk’s office for a waiver of electronic filing.
  2. Word Processing Software: Word Perfect, Microsoft Word or any other word processing software that will allow you to convert text documents to PDF.
  3. Internet Service Provider and Web Browser: CM/ECF has been certified to work with Internet Explorer versions 8 or higher and Safari. Suggested browsers are IE 8 or higher and Safari. From your browser Tools, verify that your Pop-up Blocker Settings allow Pop-ups from site.  NOTE: On April 23, 2017, Java Webstart was applied to the Fourth Circuit CM/ECF server. Firefox and Edge users can now file utilizing a new URL: For complete instructions see Utilizing Java Webstart and Appellate CM/ECF.  Chrome is not supported.
  4. Email Account: You may register more than one email address for receipt of Notices of Docket Activity. The address(es) must be regularly monitored, as your only notification of case activity will be via email. Notices of Docket Activity will be sent from the Court’s ECF System. Counsel must ensure that the spam filter operation on the network and computer receiving the email are set to allow notices from The size of your email account must be sufficient to receive Notices of Docket Activity from the ECF System. ECF-related email may exceed the size allocated for free email accounts. In general, an account with storage space of at least 100 megabytes is sufficient.
  5. PDF Conversion Software: WordPerfect versions 9, 10, 11, and 12 include the capability to convert text documents to PDF by clicking “File” on the toolbar and then “Publish to PDF”. Microsoft Word 2007 and 2010 include the ability to "Save as Adobe PDF."  You may use Adobe Acrobat Writer or download free PDF conversion software from any source of your choosing.
  6. Scanner: Use a scanner ONLY if you do not have access to an electronic version of the document that would enable you to prepare a text PDF. Paper documents should be scanned into PDF image format at 300dpi with a “black and white” setting.
  7. Java Runtime Environment (JRE): Java 1.8 is compatible with the latest version of CM/ECF. It is available at Select “Do I have Java” to automatically detect which version is installed on your computer. If you do not have the most current version of Java, the Web site will prompt you to download the recommended update.