Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Subtle difference between one VSO another one, both running on Microsoft Azure ;-)


Let consider two Visual Studio Online (TFS running as a service on Microsoft Azure).

Who would have thought that a difference would exist between 2 VSO accounts ?? Something unusual occurred to me when I wanted to add new users onto my new VSO account.

You you see a difference between the left-hand side account and the right-hand side ? (apart from the URL!)


On the left, VSO it requires a connection with Microsoft Azure Active Directory. On the right, it is not linked to AAD (look carefully on the bottom of the screen shot).

What are the consequences ?

First, when you want to link your VSO to a Microsoft Azure Account, it will detect the, say “” belongs to the AAD “Objet Direct”.


where as the second case is not (“Not connected to a directory”).


Second, when you want to add a new user into your VSO, in the first case, you will have to add it also in the AAD, as reminded below:


Whereas, when “not connected to a directory”, adding a new user is instantaneous.

This differences comes from a historical privilege that some of us had to be a VSO “Early Adopter” where AAD not not yet connected. Now a more secure way is to use your Microsoft Azure Account to instanciate a VSO account, where automatically an AAD would be associated.

In your case, do you see other differences and side effects ?  ;-)


TODAY, you do not have the choice, you MUST be in the Azure Directory; the new portal reminds you so:


as documented here:


Note: Renaming VSO accounts could be risky since other users will loose the current URL. Sometimes Microsoft reminds you that with interesting CSS colors/icons! (I love HTML 5 so much easier to trouble shoot that Silverlight … well, I wish ! )


and the full list of icons are found here (I had to reduce):


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