Add server-level administrators to Azure DevOps Server

Azure DevOps Server 2020 | Azure DevOps Server 2019 | TFS 2018 | TFS 2017 | TFS 2015 | TFS 2013

Note: Azure DevOps Server was previously named Visual Studio Team Foundation Server.

Azure DevOps provides one built-in role and three security groups to manage administrative tasks:

  • Team administrator role
  • Project Administrator group
  • Project Collection Administrator group
  • Team Foundation Administrators group

This article describes how to add users to the Team Foundation Administrators group. For information on adding users to other admin groups or roles, see:

For an overview of administrative tasks, see About user, team, project, and collection-level settings.


You must be a member of the Team Foundation Administrators group to add a user to this group.

Add a user to the server administrators group

To perform system maintenance, schedule backups, add functionality, and other server administrative tasks, Azure DevOps Server administrators must be able to configure and control all aspects of Azure DevOps Server. As a result, Azure DevOps Server administrators require administrative permissions in the software that Azure DevOps Server inter-operates with, in addition to Azure DevOps Server itself.

You can quickly grant these permissions to administrators by adding them to the Team Foundation Administrators group in Azure DevOps Server.

  1. On the application-tier server, add the user to the local Administrators group.

    Follow instructions for your operating system

  2. In the Azure DevOps Server administration console, add the user to the set of users who can run the administration console.

[!div class="mx-imgBorder"]
Admin console, Application Tier, Add Console User

Click or tab, then input username

If you're running a standard single-server deployment, or a multi-server deployment without SharePoint or reporting, you're done!

However, if you have multiple application tiers, you'll need to repeat these two steps on every application tier server.

If you have reporting or other servers integrated with your Azure DevOps deployment, you may need to manually add administrative users to those products separately.

If you have SharePoint Products on other servers, you may need to manually add administrative users to those products separately.