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July 12, 2019 – The status of the "multiple group assistant" is experimental. Feedback is appreciated.


The multiple group assistant allows users of the groups UI to update group members and other roles for several groups at once.

Although the look-and-feel is different from the rest of the groups UI, it uses the same session and security.

Therefore, any updates are made using the same session and security you would have if you made the updates one at a time.



Currently, the multiple group assistant isn't supported on the dev and evaluation environments. >>This is unverified.


  1. Establish your session
    1. Go to the groups UI –
    2. Sign in as the user who will be making the updates.
    3. The multiple group assistant can only make updates based on the permissions of the user who uses it.
    4. If you plan to make updates that require enhanced security mode, select "2FA" in the navigation bar and reauthenticate using two-factor authentication.
    5. Now go to the multiple group assistant UI –
  2. In the "Select groups" panel, find and refine the list of groups to update.
    1. Click "Find groups".
      1. This opens a "Find groups" pop-up dialog.
      2. You can search for groups by attributes like name, stem, member, and owner.
      3. You can combine search criteria too. For example, searching for groups with a specified name and owner.
      4. Tip: select "need help?" for search help.
      5. Enter your search criteria.
      6. Press "enter" or "return" on your keyboard
      7. If you leave any input field blank, the assistant will ask if you want to continue.
      8. Select "OK" to proceed.
      9. The panel will display each group that matches your search criteria.
    2. Refine the selection of groups to be affected.
      1. Review the list of groups.
      2. Uncheck the ones you don't want to update.
      3. Select "Clear list" at any time to start over.
  3. In the "Select subjects" panel, find subjects to be added or removed from the list of groups you just selected.
    1. Click "Find subjects"
      1. This opens a "Find subjects" pop-up dialog.
      2. Select which type of subject to find, either people or groups.
      3. You can search for people by UW NetID or name.
      4. You can search for groups by ID or name.
      5. Enter your search criteria.
      6. Press the "Enter" button
      7. The matching people or groups will be displayed in the pop-up.
      8. Select the people or groups to add them to your overall selection.
    2. Repeat the previous step to select additional subjects.
      1. For example, you can add several people, or several groups.
    3. Select "Clear list" at any time to start over.
  4. In the "Take action" panel, complete your updates.
    1. Select the "choose role" menu.
    2. Choose the role you want to update: member, administrator, etc.
    3. Under "Do it", select the operation to apply your updates.
      1. Selecting "Add subjects" will add the subjects to the role on the selected groups.
      2. Selecting "Remove subjects" will remove the subjects from the role on the selected groups.
    4. This opens a "processing" pop-up dialog that displays the status of each update.
    5. It displays "OK" for successful updates.
    6. It displays "no permission" for some unsuccessful updates.
    7. It displays "OK" for some unsuccessful updates too. >>This is a bug.
    8. Select the "Close" button to close the dialog.
    9. Tip: if the list of status updates is so long you can't close the dialog, reload the page. >>This is a bug.
  5. Done
    1. What will you do with the time you just saved?
    2. Maybe send us feedback on the assistant!
    3. Did it suffice for your purposes?
    4. How can we improve it?

Note: these instructions were developed based on multiple group assistant version 1.1 (revision May 7, 2013). Select the "Help" menu and choose "About the assistant" to display version information.

Note: cannot use the multiple group assistant tool with "act-as" permissions.

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