Configure settings and manage your Azure Boards project

Azure Boards | Azure DevOps Server 2019 | TFS 2018 | TFS 2017 | TFS 2015 | TFS 2013

You can start using Azure Boards and configure resources as you go. No up-front work is required. Most settings define defaults.

As an organization owner or a project admin, there are a few items you might want to attend to at the start, to ensure a smooth operational experience. If you own a large organization, you'll want to consider additional tasks to structure your projects to support multiple teams or software development apps.

Specifically, consider performing one or more of the following tasks:

Add users to your project

The first task is to ensure that all members of your organization or group are added to your organization and projects. For small groups, using Microsoft Accounts to add users to your organization and projects works fine. For details, see Add users.

Share your project vision and support collaboration

Each project has a summary page where you can share information through README files or by pointing to a project Wiki. To orient users who are new to your project and share established processes and procedures, we recommend that you set up your project summary page or provision a Wiki.

Define area and iteration paths for work tracking

If you support several products or feature areas, you can assign issues and tasks (Basic process) or user stories and tasks (Agile process) to a feature area by defining Area Paths. To assign work items to specific time intervals, also known as sprints, you'll want to configure Iteration Paths. To use the Scrum tools—sprint backlogs, taskboards, and team capacity—you need to configure several sprints. For an overview, see About areas and iteration paths.

Iterations Areas
Default iterations, Basic process A set of sample area paths

Customize your work item types

You and your team can start using all work-tracking tools immediately after you create a project. But often, one or more users want to customize the experience to meet one or more business needs. Although you can customize the process easily through the user interface, you'll want to establish a methodology for who will manage the updates and evaluate requests.


By default, organization owners and users added to the Project Collection Administrators security group are granted permission to create, edit, and manage processes used to customize the work-tracking experience. If you want to lock down who is able to perform these tasks, you can set permissions at the organization-level to Deny.

To learn more, see these articles:

Review and update notifications

A number of notifications are predefined for each project. Notifications are based on subscription rules. Subscriptions arise from the following areas:

If users believe they're getting too many notifications, they can opt out of a subscription.

Personal notifications

Install and manage extensions

To add new features and capabilities to Azure Boards, install extensions from the Azure DevOps Marketplace. You can install free, preview, or paid

To learn more, see Install free extensions for Azure DevOps. To learn about building your own Azure DevOps extensions, see developing and publishing extensions.

Enable or remove services from the user interface

To simplify the web portal user interface, you can disable select services. If you use a project only to log bugs, then you can remove all services except for Boards.

This example shows that Test Plans has been disabled:

Disable a service