Team Services Large Account User Management Roadmap (April 2017)

Ali Tai

As the use of Visual Studio Team Services continues to grow and the size of teams in the cloud grow, we have been working to better support user management scenarios in large accounts. We have heard the pains of administrators of large accounts, particularly having to manage the access of each user individually and not having an easy way to assign resources to certain sets of users. I want to share how we are improving those scenarios in the next several months.

As always, the timelines and designs shared in this post are subject to change.

Bulk Edit for Users

Today, administrators have to manage access levels, extensions, and group memberships individually. This works for our small accounts, but our large accounts are left at a loss for editing multiple users at once. This is where our new bulk edit feature will come into play. With bulk edit, you will be able to select multiple users and edit their access levels, extensions, or group memberships at once.

AAD Group Support

What a user has access to in a Team Services account is controlled by what of the following resources they have assigned to them:

  • Access Level: This controls what core features a user has visibility of (Basic features or Stakeholder features)
  • Extensions: Add-ons that customize the VSTS experience
  • Group memberships: These control a user’s ability to use features across VSTS

In Team Services today, AAD groups can be used to assign group memberships to the users in it. This makes it very easy to manage what specific actions a user can or cannot do in the product based on how you have categorized them in AAD.

We are taking this concept and bringing it to access levels and extensions as well. With this work, you will be able to assign access levels and extensions to groups. Adding someone to the AAD group will automatically grant them the correct access levels and extensions when they access the VSTS account.  As a result, you will no longer have to manage access levels and extensions on an individual basis.

In the next several months, we will be working to enable administrators to:

  • Assign extensions and access levels to AAD groups
  • Manage the resources of users via AAD groups
  • Set up AAD groups to automatically purchase necessary resources for new users


We are working to deliver the features described above to Team Services within the first half of the year and are still working through what these improvements will look like on-premises. This is just the beginning of our improvements to the user management experience for administrators of large accounts. We are also working on prioritizing:

  • Supporting licensing-only and security-only administrators
  • Improved invitation experiences for guests outside of the directory
  • Improved project-level and team-level user management

We know we still have a lot more work to do in this space, and we look forward to hearing your feedback along the way.


Ali Tai

VSTS & TFS Program Manager


1 comment

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  • Huntley HarrisMicrosoft employee 0

    This feature has been removed. Is there any plan to bring it back? Or an alternative to managing Extensions within and organization, allowing us to assign to individual Projects or Groups instead of everyone having access to all extensions?

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