Set up a private forum

Sometimes you want a forum to be private. Maybe you only want your employees to access it, a set of beta of users, or your own customers. We'll walk you through how to set this up.

Make a forum Private

Click on the Settings icon in the menu bar -> Click "Feedback Forums" on the General Settings page -> 
Click "Forums" -> Click "Edit" for the forum you want to make private.

You'll see the option to "Make this forum private" -> Check the option, and you'll have several options for granting access.

Your Options for Granting Access Include:
  • SSO and SSO SAML
  • Email Domain
  • IP Address
  • Email address (you can invite specific email addresses to the account)
We'll walk you through each option.

SSO and SSO SAML

If you have Single Sign On (SSO) or SSO SAML set up, you can grant access to your private forums through SSO. When your SSO users sign in, they will automatically be given access to the forum.

With SSO, you can also grant or deny access to specific forums in the token. This section of our documentation walks through how to do this. We do not have this option available for SSO SAML.

Email Domain

When granting access by email domain, users must confirm their email address, and create a password before they can view the forum. 

In the forum settings, enter the email domains you want to grant access (be sure to put example.com, not @example.com).

Here's how the process works for new users:

  1. Send them the URL of the Private Forum.
  2. When they arrive on the page, they will need to enter their email address and click “Sign Up.”
  3. They will get a message that says they don’t have access to the forum because their email address is unconfirmed.
  4. They will need to check their email inbox and click on the link in the confirmation email, which will walk them through creating their password, so they can access the forum.

Grant Users Access by IP Address

This is especially useful if you’re using your forum for internal purposes. Enter the approved IP addresses, and save your settings. Please note that the IP range must be defined according to this specification.

Users who come from an approved IP address, will be able to sign in with just an email address to access the private forum.

Invite Users by Email Address

In addition to the other authorization options, you can also invite individual email addresses to your UserVoice account. This works well for forums used for beta tests and smaller user groups. It's also an easy way to get started with a private forum.

  • Once you make your forum private, click the link to "Manage Authorized Users" -> Click the "Invite Users" tab.
  • You can enter individual email addresses, or bulk upload a list. 
  • You’ll be given the option to create a customized invitation message.
  • Users will receive your invitation with a link to the forum. They will need to click the link in the email to confirm their email address, and then they will be prompted to create a password. Users must have a confirmed email address and password before they will be able to view the private forum.
Can I invite users from within my private forum? Yes, if you are in the forum, click the "more" link in the top right corner, and choose "Invite users."

Can I remove access to the private forum? Yes, if you delete a user's claimed or unclaimed invitation, it will remove their access.


Why does my instance of UserVoice look different? If you're on one of our legacy plans, you will need to go to Feedback (left hand menu) -> The forum name -> Click the "Users" tab -> You'll see a button to invite users to the private forum.

Use One or All Access Settings

Many companies use just one privacy setting, but you can actually use multiple ones.

  • You can allow ANY of the following options, so users can sign in with SSO, from an authorized IP or from an approved email domain. 
  • You also have the option to require ALL of the authentication options, so users must sign in with SSO, and an approved email domain.

What about inviting users by email address? When you invite a specific email address to a forum, it is always an "OR" option. So the user must meet your other access restrictions OR their emil address must have access.

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