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Team Foundation Server Default Groups, Permissions, and Roles

When you create a new project in Team Foundation Server, new project-level groups are created for that project, and are assigned permissions to access resources appropriate to that group. To customize projects to better suit your business needs, you must understand what permissions are assigned to which users and groups, and what permissions you might want to add to any users or groups you might add. Additionally, if you want to closely align users with the roles described for MSF for Agile Software Development or MSF for CMMI Process Improvement, you must understand how to align those roles with the default groups already assigned to the project. Alternatively, you can create groups that associate directly with each of those roles, and assign those groups the permissions appropriate to the role.

Default Groups and Permissions

Whenever you create a project in Team Foundation Server, groups are created at the project level. By default, each of those groups has certain permissions assigned to them. You can add permissions to these default groups in addition to any groups or users you want to add at the server or project level.

Server-Level Groups and Permissions

By default, the following groups exist at the server level when you install Team Foundation Server:

  • SERVER\Team Foundation Administrators   Members of this group can perform all operations for Team Foundation Server. This group should be restricted to the smallest possible number of users who need total administrative control over Team Foundation Server. By default, this group contains the Local Administrators group (BUILTIN\Administrators) for the server and the SERVER\Service Accounts group.

  • SERVER\Team Foundation Valid Users   Members of this group have access to Team Foundation Server. This group automatically contains all users and groups that have been added anywhere within Team Foundation Server. You cannot modify the membership of this group.

    NoteImportant

    Do not unset or deny the View server-level information permission for this group.

  • SERVER\Service Accounts   Members of this group have service-level permissions for Team Foundation Server. By default this group contains the service account supplied during installation. If you want to add new accounts to this group, you must add them using the TFSSecurity command-line tool. This group should only contain service accounts and not user accounts or groups (unless that group only contains service accounts). By default, this group is a member of Team Foundation Administrators.

  • SERVER\Team Foundation Licensed Users   (Team Foundation Server Workgroup Edition only) Members of this group can connect to the server installed with Team Foundation Server Workgroup Edition. Access to the server is permitted to members and no other permissions are explicitly set for this group. The group can have one to five user accounts but no group accounts as members. The user accounts can be domain accounts or members of a workgroup environment. The term "workgroup" in the product name refers to a group of the one to five users and not the workgroup environment. Only members of this group can connect to the server. By default, the user account used to install Team Foundation Server Workgroup Edition becomes a member of this group. If you upgrade to Team Foundation Server Standard Edition, you can remove this group.

By default, these groups have the following permissions set for them. For a full description of each permission in the following list, see Team Foundation Server Permissions.

NoteNote

You can set server-level permissions for project-level groups by using the TFSSecurity command-line utility.

Permission Name By default, set for: Consider adding to:

Administer shelved changes

Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts

Manually-added users or groups who might or must delete shelvesets created by other users.

Administer warehouse

Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts

Manually-added users or groups who might or must change warehouse settings through the WarehouseController.asmx Web service ChangeSetting Web method.

Administer workspaces

Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts

Manually-added users or groups who might or must create workspaces for other users and delete workspaces created by other users.

Create a workspace

Team Foundation Administrators, Team Foundation Valid Users

None.

Create new projects

Team Foundation Administrators

Project administrators who will regularly be creating new projects. In order to successfully create new projects, users must be a member of the SharePoint Central Admins group in Windows SharePoint Server and have Content Manager permissions in SQL Reporting Services.

Edit Server-Level information

Team Foundation Administrators

None.

Alter Trace Settings

Team Foundation Administrators

Other server administrators who might or must change the trace settings for gathering more detailed diagnostic information about Team Foundation Server Web services.

Trigger Events

Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts

None. Adding this permission to other users has the potential to cause denial of service attacks.

Manage Process Template

Team Foundation Administrators

Project administrators and any manually-added users or groups, such as process specialists, who might or must create, edit, download, and upload process templates to Team Foundation Server.

View Server-level information

Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts, Team Foundation Valid Users

None.

View system synchronization information

Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts

None.

Project-Level Groups and Permissions

By default, the following groups exist at the project level:

  • Project Name\Project Administrators   Members of this group can administer all aspects of the team project, although they cannot create new projects.

  • Project Name\Contributors   Members of this group can contribute to the project in multiple ways, such as add, modify, and delete code, create and modify work items, and so on.

  • Project Name\Readers   Members of this group can view the project but not modify it.

  • Project Name\Build Services   Members of this group have build service permissions for the project. This group should only contain build service accounts and not user accounts or groups (unless that group only contains build service accounts).

Besides these project-level accounts, two of the server-level accounts also appear in every Team Foundation Server project:

  • SERVER\Team Foundation Administrators

    NoteNote

    You cannot change the permissions for this server-level group.

  • SERVER\Team Foundation Valid Users

    NoteImportant

    Do not remove or deny the View project-level information permission for this group.

By default, these groups have the following permissions set for them. For a full description of each permission in the following list, see Team Foundation Server Permissions.

NoteNote

You can add project-level groups to server-level groups by using the TFSSecurity command-line utility.

Permission Name By default, set for: Consider adding to:

Administer a build

Project Administrators, Team Foundation Administrators

Manually added users or groups who might or must delete completed builds and terminate current builds in progress.

Delete this project

Project Administrators, Team Foundation Administrators

None.

Edit build quality

Project Administrators, Team Foundation Administrators

Any manually-added users or groups that might or must add information about the quality of the build through the Team Foundation Build user interface.

Edit project-level information

Project Administrators, Team Foundation Administrators

None.

Publish Test Results

Project Administrators, Team Foundation Administrators, Build Services

Any manually-added users or groups that might or must add and remove test results on the team project portal and add or remove test runs.

Start a Build

Project Administrators, Contributors, Team Foundation Administrators, Build Services

Any manually-added users or groups that might or must start a build through the Team Foundation Build user interface or from the command line.

View Project-level information

Project Administrators, Contributors, Readers, Team Foundation Administrators, Build Services, Team Foundation Valid Users

All manually-added users or groups.

Write to Build Operational Store

Build Services, Team Foundation Administrators

This permission should only be assigned to service accounts and not to individual users.

Area-Level Groups and Permissions

By default, the following groups exist at the area level:

  • Project Name\Project Administrators

  • Project Name\Contributors

  • Project Name\Readers

  • Project Name\Build Services

  • SERVER\Team Foundation Administrators

  • SERVER\Team Foundation Valid Users

By default, these groups have the following permissions set for them. For a full description of each permission in the following list, see Team Foundation Server Permissions.

Permission Name By default, set for: Consider adding to:

Create and order child nodes

Project Administrators, Team Foundation Administrators

None.

Delete this node

Project Administrators, Team Foundation Administrators

Any manually-added users or groups that might or must delete area nodes.

Edit this node

Project Administrators, Team Foundation Administrators

Any manually-added users or groups that might or must rename area nodes.

Edit work items in this node

Project Administrators, Contributors, Build Services, Team Foundation Administrators

Any manually-added users or groups that might or must edit work items in this area node.

View this node

Project Administrators, Contributors, Readers, Build Services, Team Foundation Administrators, Team Foundation Valid Users

None.

View work items in this node

Project Administrators, Contributors, Readers, Build Services, Team Foundation Administrators

Any manually-added users or groups that might or must view, but not edit or change, work items in this area node.

Source Control Groups and Permissions

By default, the following groups exist at the source control level:

  • Project Name\Project Administrators

  • Project Name\Contributors

  • Project Name\Readers

  • Project Name\Build Services

  • SERVER\Team Foundation Administrators

  • SERVER\Service Accounts

By default, these groups have the following permissions set for them. For a full description of each permission in the following list, see Team Foundation Server Permissions.

Permission Name By default, set for: Consider adding to:

Read

Project Administrators, Contributors, Readers, Build Services, Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts

Most manually-added users or groups; any that might or must read the contents of a file or folder.

Check Out

Project Administrators, Contributors, Build Services, Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts

Any manually-added users or groups who might or must check out or make a pending change to items in a folder.

Check In

Project Administrators, Contributors, Build Services, Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts

Any manually-added users or groups that might or must check in items or revise any committed changeset comments.

Label

Project Administrators, Contributors, Build Services, Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts

Any manually-added users or groups that might or must label items.

Lock

Project Administrators, Contributors, Build Services, Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts

Any manually-added users or groups that might or must lock or unlock folders or files.

Revise Other User's Changes

Project Administrators, Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts

Manually-added users or groups responsible for supervising or monitoring the project that might or must change the comments on checked in files, even if another user checked in the file.

Unlock Other User's Changes

Project Administrators, Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts

Manually-added users or groups that might or must unlock files locked by other users.

Undo Other User's Changes

Project Administrators, Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts

Manually-added users or groups that might or must undo a pending change made by another user.

Administer Labels

Project Administrators, Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts

Manually-added users or groups that might or must edit or delete labels created by another user.

Manipulate Security Settings

Project Administrators, Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts

None.

Check In Other User's Changes

Project Administrators, Team Foundation Administrators, Service Accounts

None.

Permissions Associated With the MSF for Agile Software Development Roles

If you created your team project using the MSF for Agile Software Development process template, you might want to assign users to groups that correspond with the roles for MSF for Agile Software Development. You can do this in one of two ways. You can assign users to the default group that most closely aligns to the permissions that are required for each role. Alternatively, you can create groups for each role, assign the appropriate permissions to that group, and then add the users who perform that role.

Assigning Users to Default Groups Based On Their MSF for Agile Software Development Roles

You can assign users to default groups based on their MSF for Agile Software Development roles. Although these groups do not directly correspond to each role, it is relatively simple to add users to these groups, and you do not have to create new groups and add permissions for the groups at the server, project, area, and source control levels. The disadvantage to this approach is that you lose some of the fine granularity of permission and control that you can have by adding groups specifically based on each role.

The following table provides suggestions for which default group best aligns with each MSF for Agile Software Development role. For more information about MSF for Agile Software Development and its roles, see the MSF for Agile Software Development Web site at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=55200.

Agile Role Add to Default Group

Architect

Contributor

Business Analyst

Contributor

Developer

Contributor

Project Manager

Project Administrator

Release Manager

Project Administrator

Tester

Contributor

Creating Groups That Correspond to MSF for Agile Software Development Roles and Assigning Permissions

You can create custom groups based on each MSF for Agile Software Development role and assign users to these groups. An advantage of creating these groups instead of using the default groups gives is that you have you more control over roles and permissions. The disadvantage to this approach is that you must create new groups and add permissions for the groups at the server, project, area, and source control levels.

NoteNote

If you create custom groups to correspond with roles, you must set appropriate permissions for each new group in Windows SharePoint Services, Reporting Services, and either in Active Directory or Local Users and Groups on the Team Foundation Server computers. This is in addition to setting Team Foundation Server permissions.

NoteImportant

You cannot manually create a custom group that has all the permissions of the Project Administrator or Team Foundation Administrator groups. For custom groups that require Project Administrator permissions, create custom groups in Active Directory or on the local computer and add those groups to the Project Administrators group.

The following table provides suggestions for which permissions are appropriate for each MSF for Agile Software Development role. For a full description of each permission, see Team Foundation Server Permissions.

Agile Role Server Project Area Source Control

Architect

Start a build

View project-level information

Edit work items in this node

View this node

View work items in this node

Read

Check out

Check in

Label

Lock

Business Analyst

View project-level information

View this node

View work items in this node

None

Developer

View project-level information

Start a build

Edit work items in this node

View this node

View work items in this node

Read

Check out

Check in

Label

Lock

Project Manager

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Release Manager

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Tester

View project-level information

Edit build quality

Publish test results

Edit work items in this node

View this node

View work items in this node

Read

Check out

Check in

Label

Lock

Permissions Associated With the MSF for CMMI Process Improvement Roles

If you created your team project using the MSF for CMMI Process Improvement process template, you might want to assign users to groups that correspond with the roles for MSF for CMMI Process Improvement. You can do this in one of two ways. You can assign the users to the default group that most closely aligns to the permissions that are required for each role. Alternatively, you can create groups for each role, assign the appropriate permissions to that group, and then add the users who perform that role.

For more information about MSF for CMMI Process Improvement and its roles, see the MSF for CMMI Process Improvement Web site (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=55203).

Assigning Users to Default Groups Based On Their MSF for CMMI Process Improvement Roles

You can assign users to default groups based on their MSF for CMMI Process Improvement roles. Although these groups do not directly correspond to each role, it is relatively simple to add users to these groups, and you do not have to create new groups and add permissions for the groups at the server, project, area, and source control levels. The disadvantage to this approach is that you lose some of the fine granularity of permission and control that you can have by adding groups specifically based on each role.

The following table provides suggestions for which default group best aligns with each MSF for CMMI Process Improvement role.

CMMI Role Add to Default Group

Auditor

Contributor

Build Engineer

Project Administrator

Business Analyst

Contributor

Developer

Contributor

Development Manager

Project Administrator

Infrastructure Architect

Contributor

IPM Officer

Contributor

Lead Developer

Project Administrator

Product Manager

Contributor

Project Manager

Project Administrator

Release Manager

Project Administrator

Solution Architect

Contributor

Sponsor

Reader

Subject Matter Expert (SME)

Reader

Test Manager

Project Administrator

Tester

Contributor

User Education Architect

Contributor

User Experience Specialist

Contributor

Creating Groups That Correspond To MSF for CMMI Process Improvement Roles and Assigning Permissions

You can create custom groups based on each MSF for CMMI Process Improvement role and assign users to these groups. These groups have much more granularity and control than just using the default groups. The disadvantage to this approach is that you must create new groups and add permissions for the groups at the server, project, area, and source control levels. Because MSF for CMMI Process Improvement has many roles, you should carefully consider what level of auditing, granularity, and control you need for your project before investing the time to create groups for each role.

NoteNote

   If you create custom groups to correspond with roles, you must set appropriate permissions for each new group in Windows SharePoint Services, SQL Reporting Services, and either in Active Directory or Local Users and Groups on the Team Foundation Server computers. This is in addition to setting Team Foundation Server permissions.

NoteImportant

You cannot manually create a custom group that has all the permissions of the Project Administrator or Team Foundation Administrator groups. For custom groups that require Project Administrator permissions, create custom groups in Active Directory or on the local computer and add those groups to the Project Administrators group.

The following table provides suggestions for which permissions are appropriate for each MSF for CMMI Process Improvement role. For a full description of each permission, see Team Foundation Server Permissions.

CMMI Role Server Project Area Source Control

Auditor

View project-level information

View this node

View work items in this node

Edit work items in this node

None

Build Engineer

View project-level information

View this node

View work items in this node

Edit work items in this node

Read

Check out

Check in

Label

Lock

Business Analyst

View project-level information

View this node

View work items in this node

Edit work items in this node

None

Developer

View project-level information

View this node

View work items in this node

Edit work items in this node

Read

Check out

Check in

Label

Lock

Development Manager

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Infrastructure Architect

View project-level information

View this node

View work items in this node

Edit work items in this node

Read

Check out

Check in

Label

Lock

IPM Officer

View project-level information

View this node

View work items in this node

Edit work items in this node

None.

Lead Developer

View project-level information

View this node

View work items in this node

Edit work items in this node

Read

Check out

Check in

Label

Lock

Product Manager

View project-level information

View this node

View work items in this node

Edit work items in this node

Read

Check out

Check in

Label

Lock

Project Manager

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Release Manager

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Add group members to the Project Administrators group

Solution Architect

View project-level information

Start a build

View this node

View work items in this node

Edit work items in this node

Read

Check out

Check in

Label

Lock

Sponsor

View project-level information

View this node

View work items in this node

None

Subject Matter Expert (SME)

View project-level information

View this node

View work items in this node

None

Test Manager

View project-level information

View this node

View work items in this node

Edit work items in this node

Read

Check out

Check in

Label

Lock

Tester

View project-level information

View this node

View work items in this node

Edit work items in this node

Read

Check out

Check in

Label

Lock

User Education Architect

View project-level information

View this node

View work items in this node

Edit work items in this node

Read

User Experience Specialist

View project-level information

View this node

View work items in this node

Edit work items in this node

Read

Check out

Check in

Label

Lock

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