User groups within InstantKB allow you to control the content & features available to both regular end users, administrators & support agents from your public facing InstantKB support center.
User groups can be used to create hidden areas within your support site that are only accessible to those users who belong to the appropriate groups.
What Can be Controlled Via User Groups?
Controlling Access To Tabs
You can associate one or more user groups with any built-in or custom tab within InstantKB. Only those users who belong to one or more of the groups also associated with the tab would see the tab and have access to view content within the tab.
For example you may wish to create a knowledgebase tab called "Internal Processes" that is only visible to users who belong to an Internal user group. Only users who are associated with the Internal user group would see the "Internal Processes" tab whilst all other users won't see or have access to the "Internal Processes" tab or any categories or articles within that tab.
For further reading please see Controlling Access To Tabs.
The screen grab below shows us editing groups associated with custom Demo Documentation tab
If you don't have permission to access a tab (i.e. the user account you are logged in with does not belong to any of the user groups associated with a tab) content within the tab will not be accessible even if child content (categories / articles) are associated with groups the current authenticated user belongs to. If a tab is not access to the current user all categories and articles within that tab won't be accessible regardless of the groups associated with the category or article. .
Controlling Access To Categories
You can also associate one or more user groups with individual categories within a tab to further control which categories are displayed within the tab depending on the user groups associated with the current authenticated user.
For example let's say you have a "Internal Processes" tab we want to make available to all employees but not accessible to regular end users. Again we would only associate our custom Internal Processes tab with an single Internal user group. All users who belong to the Internal user group will now see the Internal Processes tab whilst others won't. Great all our employees have access to the "Internal Processes" tab as we also associate each employee account with the Internal user group. Within the Internal Processes tab however we wish to display various categories for different areas of our business. We want to further customize the categories containing our processes depending on the department our employees belong to.
Let's say for example we had the following categories within our Internal Processes tab...
- Internal Processes (tab)
- Sales (category)
- Support (category)
- HR (category)
- IT (category)
To control access to individual categories we'll need to create new user groups alongside our existing Internal user group to represent the different areas of our business & help us control access to individual categories. For example we'll create new user groups via the Admin CP with the names sales, support, HR, IT.
Now we can simply edit each category within our Internal Processes tab and set the user groups according like so...
- Internal Processes (associated with Internal, sales, support, IT & HR user groups)
- Sales (only associated with sales user group)
- Support (only associated with support user group)
- HR (only associated with sales HR group)
- IT (only associated with sales IT group)
Now all employees will have access to the Internal Processes tab as this is associated with all our employee user groups.
Now however as we've set specific user groups on the individual categories our employees who are associated with both the Internal and Sales user group within InstantKB will only see the Sales category, similar only those employees who are associated with both the Internal and Support user groups will see the Support category.
This is a great way to process everyone access to a single tab but further control access to categories within that tab depending on the user groups associated with categories & users.
Controlling Access to Individual Articles
When editing each article within InstantKB you can further customize the user groups that will have access to the article. If no user groups are provided the article will be associated with all existing user groups and the user groups assocaited with the parent category or tab will be used to control access to the article.
Controlling Permissions Using User Groups
User groups are also used to determine which permission set to associate with a specific user. You can associate permission sets with specific user groups from the Admin CP > Users > Groups page as shown below...
The selected permission set for each user group will be applied to users who have that group set as there primary user group.
Editing Groups Associated With Users
You can edit the primary user group and secondary user groups for any user within InstantKB via the InstantKB administrator control panel. From within the InstantKB administrator control panel you'll need to click "Users" on the left and then click "Users" again.
From the Users page within the Admin CP you'll see a list of all users within your InstantKB database. You can click any username and edit that users profile. When editing a users profile you can associate the user with one or more user groups as shown below...
For further information please also see "Editing user groups associated with a user within InstantKB" or "Creating Users within InstantKB".
We hope this article helps explain how user groups work within InstantKB. Of course if we can assist further please don't hesitate to submit a support request or contact us.