Manage personalization policies

Applies To: Office SharePoint Server 2007

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Topic Last Modified: 2007-07-09

User profile administrators can configure the access and privacy settings for My Site personalization features and user profile properties.

Users can view personalized information and use personalization features if they have the Use personal features permission enabled. They can share personalized information with any users with access to the same trusted My Site host location. Users without this permission cannot view any personalized information.

Even with the Use personal features permission enabled, users cannot view all personalized information about other users. According to the needs of each organization, some user profile properties and some personalization features are more sensitive than others. Personalization policies enable administrators and individual users to configure policies for each personalization feature or user profile property to achieve greater precision in preserving privacy and sharing. Users can only view an individual user profile property or personalization feature if the policy for the property or features allows visibility for those users.

Policies determine what information is displayed on the public profile for each user. Policies can be managed for the following personalization features:

  • Memberships, including SharePoint sites and distribution lists

  • Colleagues, including the My Colleagues list and colleagues recommendations

  • My Links

  • My Personalization links, including personalization site pinning

  • User profile properties

Each policy is defined by a policy setting and a default privacy setting. The policy settings are:

  • Enabled. Information is visible to users other than the user profiles manager, depending upon the default privacy setting.

  • Disabled. Information is visible only to the user profiles manager on the Edit User Properties page on the Shared Services Administration site. The property is not displayed on either the public profile page or the user's personal site.

The default privacy setting, also known as the visibility for the policy, determines who can view a personalization feature or property. Values include:

  • Only Me. A feature or property is visible to the user on the personal site and public profiler.

  • My Manager. A feature or property is visible to the user and the user's manager.

  • My Workgroup. The feature or property is visible to the user and all people reporting to the same manager.

  • My Colleagues. A feature or property is visible to all people in the colleagues list.

  • Everyone. Everyone can see the feature or property on the public profile. This setting must be selected if a user profile property is going to be replicated.


Users with the Manage user profiles permission enabled, who are known as user profiles managers, can view properties and personalization features for all users, regardless of the default privacy setting.

The default privacy setting can be changed if the User can override check box is selected. The override option is not available for colleague recommendations and some of the user profile properties.


By default, some features or properties have this option selected, and some do not.
Colleague recommendations are visible to everyone and their default privacy setting cannot be changed.

Individual users can add links to sites in the Documents Web Part on their personal site. These links are only displayed on the individual personal site, and their visibility is controlled by the personalization policy selected for Personalization Site Pinning in the My Personalization Links section of the Manage Policy page. They should not be confused with the personalization site links managed by the user profile manager on the Shared Services Administration page, which are added to the My Site top link bar and targeted to all users in the SSP, based on audience membership.

User profile properties

Personalization policies for user profiles are managed from the Edit Properties page for each property. The policy options are more complicated than for other personalization policies.

The policy settings for user profile properties are:

  • Required. The property is enabled and a value for the property must be provided.

  • Optional. The property is enabled, but a value is not required. Individual users decide whether to provide values for optional properties.

  • Disabled. This is the same as the policy setting for other personalization features. Only the user profiles manager can view the property.

The visibility options for user profile properties are the same as the visibility options for policies for other personalization features. However, the default privacy settings of some default user properties cannot be changed.

Policies for user profile properties can be replicated across user information lists in multiple SharePoint site collections. Properties with the Replicable option cleared are not replicated and continue to display the manually entered values on each user information list. Properties with the Replicable check box selected can be replicated, but only if the default privacy setting for the property is Everyone and the User can override check box is cleared. The values for replicated properties on all sites using the SSP are overwritten by the values for the property in the user profile. These values are updated every time user profiles are imported.

User profile properties have some additional settings that impact visibility, although they are not technically part of the personalization policy. Administrators can decide to change edit settings to let individual users modify the values for specific properties. They can also change display settings to determine whether a property is visible on the public profile, the Edit Details page, the Colleague Tracker Web Part, or any combination.

Task Requirements

The following are required to perform the procedures for this task:

  • Administrators must have read permission to the Shared Services Provider (SSP) administration site.

  • Administrators must have the Manage User Profiles permission enabled.

To manage personalization policies, you can perform the following procedures: