GitLab Feature Highlight: Groups

Job van der Voort, Jacob Vosmaer ·
Jun 30, 2014 · 3 min read · Leave a comment

GitLab is a massive open source project with over 600 contributors, all working together to create an amazing platform to collaborate on code. Every month on the 22nd, a new version of GitLab is released, and every month new features are added. To make you aware of the power of GitLab, we walk through some of its features in these blog posts.

Barry effectively has 'Master' access to GitLab CI now

We start by looking at GitLab Groups. GitLab groups allow you to group projects into directories and give users access to several projects at once.

When you create a new project in GitLab, the default namespace for the project is the personal namespace associated with your GitLab user. Below we will see how to create groups, put projects in groups and manage who can access the projects in a group.

Creating groups

You can create a group by going to the 'Groups' tab of the GitLab dashboard and clicking the 'New group' button.

Click the 'New group' button in the 'Groups' tab

Next, enter the name (required) and the optional description and group avatar.

Fill in the name for your new group

When your group has been created you are presented with the group dashboard feed, which will be empty.

Group dashboard

You can use the 'New project' button to add a project to the new group.

Transferring an existing project into a group

You can transfer an existing project into a group you own from the project settings page. First scroll down to the 'Dangerous settings' and click 'Show them to me'. Now you can pick any of the groups you manage as the new namespace for the group.

Transfer a project to a new namespace

GitLab administrators can use the admin interface to move any project to any namespace if needed.

Adding users to a group

One of the benefits of putting multiple projects in one group is that you can give a user to access to all projects in the group with one action.

Suppose we have a group with two projects.

Group with two projects

On the 'Group Members' page we can now add a new user Barry to the group.

Add user Barry to the group

Now because Barry is a 'Developer' member of the 'Open Source' group, he automatically gets 'Developer' access to all projects in the 'Open Source' group.

Barry has 'Developer' access to GitLab CI

If necessary, you can increase the access level of an individual user for a specific project, by adding them as a Member to the project.

Barry effectively has 'Master' access to GitLab CI now

Managing group memberships via LDAP

In GitLab Enterprise Edition it is possible to manage GitLab group memberships using LDAP groups. See the GitLab Enterprise Edition documentation for more information.

Allowing only admins to create groups

By default, any GitLab user can create new groups. This ability can be disabled for individual users from the admin panel. It is also possible to configure GitLab so that new users default to not being able to create groups:

# For omnibus-gitlab, put the following in /etc/gitlab/gitlab.rb
gitlab_rails['gitlab_default_can_create_group'] = false

# For installations from source, uncomment the 'default_can_create_group'
# line in /home/git/gitlab/config/gitlab.yml
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