Confluence Groups for Administrators

On this page

Still need help?

The Atlassian Community is here for you.

Ask the community

Grouping users in Confluence is a great way to cut down the work required when managing permissions and restrictions. Once you have a group of users, you can assign that group a set of global permissions. For example, if you don't want that group of users to be able to create spaces, you can revoke the 'Create Space(s)' permission.

Other users can also take advantage of Confluence groups. Space admins can assign a set of space permissions to a group rather than to each individual user, and other users with the 'Add/Delete Restrictions' space permission can add and remove page restrictions for groups.

Special groups

There are three special default groups in Confluence:

  1. system-administrators (sys admin) – The user that sets up a Confluence instance will be the first sys admin; they can also appoint other sys admins by granting them the 'System Administrator' global permission. They can perform all Confluence administrative functions, including assigning permissions to other users.
  2. confluence-administrators: This is a group of 'super-users' who can access the Confluence administration screens ('administration console') and perform site-wide administration. Members of this group can also see all spaces in the Confluence site. Any user who is a member of this group has site-wide administration powers, regardless of any other setting. The settings on the global permissions screen do not affect the powers allowed to members of this group.
  3. confluence-users: This is the default group for all new users. Permissions you assign to this group will be assigned to all newly created users.

On this page:

Related pages:

The Confluence Administrator permission and the 'confluence-administrators' group are not related. Going by the names, you would think the 'confluence-administrators' group and the 'Confluence Administrator' permission are related – but they are not. Granting a user or a group 'Confluence Administrator' permission is not the same as granting them membership of the 'confluence-administrators' group. Granting the 'Confluence Administrator' permission enables access to only a subset of the administrative functions. Granting membership to the 'confluence-administrators' group gives complete access.

View the comparison table.

Anonymous users

All users who don't log in when they access Confluence are considered 'anonymous'. You can grant anonymous users the 'Use Confluence' permission via the Global Permissions screen if you need to. This will allow non-registered users to access pages and spaces in Confluence. A space administrator can further control anonymous access per space via the space permissions.

Add or delete groups

To add a new group:

  1. Choose the cog icon , then choose General Configuration under Confluence Administration
  2. Choose Groups in the left-hand panel
  3. Choose Add Group
  4. Enter a name for your group and choose Save

You're now ready to start adding users to the group.

To delete a group:

  1. Choose the cog icon , then choose General Configuration under Confluence Administration
  2. Choose Groups in the left-hand panel
    You will see a list of all existing groups along with links to remove them.
  3. Choose Delete next to the group you want to remove

Confluence Administrator permission vs confluence-admin group comparison

Granting the Confluence Administrator permission to someone allows them access to many, but not all, options in the administration console ( > General configuration). Expand the comparison table to view the options available to people granted the Confluence Administrator permission, and to those in the confluence-admin group.

Click to view the comparison table
Administration optionConfluence Admin permissionconfluence-administrators group
General Configuration(tick)(tick)
Further Configuration(tick)(tick)
Manage Referrers(tick)(tick)
Shortcut Links(tick)(tick)
Global Templates and Blueprints(tick)(tick)
Import Templates(tick)(tick)
Mail Servers(error)(tick)
Recommended Updates Email(tick)(tick)
User Macros(error)(tick)
In-app Notifications(error)(tick)
HipChat Integration(tick)(tick)
Attachment Storage(error)(tick)
Spam Prevention(error)(tick)
PDF Export Language Support(error)(tick)
Configure Code Macro(tick)(tick)
WebDAV Configuration(tick)(tick)
Office Connector(error)(tick)
Find new add-ons(tick)(tick)
Manage add-ons(tick)(tick)
Purchased add-ons(error)(tick)
Security Configuration(tick)(tick)
Global Permissions(tick)(tick)
Space Permissions(tick)(tick)
User Directories(error)(tick)
Colour Scheme(tick)(tick)
Site Logo and Favicon(tick)(tick)
PDF Layout(tick)(tick)
PDF Stylesheet(tick)(tick)
Default Space Logo(tick)(tick)
 (error)Custom HTML
System Information(error)(tick)
Backup & Restore(error)(tick)
Content Indexing(tick)(tick)
Mail Queue(error)(tick)
Cache Management(error)(tick)
Scheduled Jobs(error)(tick)
License Details(tick)(tick)
Logging and Profiling(error)(tick)
Thread Dump(error)(tick)
Application Links(tick)(tick)
Application Navigator(tick)(tick)
Import from Another Wiki(tick)(tick)
Atlassian Support Tools(error)(tick)



  • Multiple user directories:
    You can define multiple user directories in Confluence, so that Confluence looks in more than one place for its users and groups. For example, you could use the default Confluence internal directory and connect to an LDAP directory server. In that case, you can define the directory order to determine where Confluence looks first when processing users and groups.

    Here is a summary of how the directory order affects the processing:

    • The order of the directories is the order in which they will be searched for users and groups.
    • Changes to users and groups will be made only in the first directory where the application has permission to make changes.
    See Managing Multiple Directories.


Last modified on Dec 2, 2015

Was this helpful?

Provide feedback about this article
Powered by Confluence and Scroll Viewport.