Forge is a great tool for administering your servers. But what if you have a whole team that you want to grant access to one server? What if there’s a different team that you want to give access to a different server?
Forge now has a feature called Circles, which allows you to choose a group of people (Forge paid users or not; non-users will need to create a free Circles-only Forge account) who have access to one or more of your servers. At the same time this feature was added, a new plan called Forge Plus was added, which is the basic Forge (which is now limited to 5 servers) plus Circles and unlimited servers.
What’s a Circle?
A circle is a group of one or more users that you’ve grouped for the purpose of granting them access to some or all of your servers.
Each user in a circle will be able to do anything to any server (add sites, admin sites, delete sites, etc.) other than delete or archive the server. They won’t see your billing, or your authentication/API information to the host, but they’ll be able to administer the servers and sites fully.
Like I mentioned above, you now need to upgrade to a Forge Plus account ($20/mo instead of $10/mo) if you want to use Forge to manage more than 5 servers. I think this is a great move, because it leaves the majority of independent developers on the lowest plan, but allows business owners like myself to start paying for the greater level of use we get from Forge.
Another new update that came through with this change is a universal Sites dropdown, which allows you to navigate to a certain site without navigating to its server first. As you can see, it shows the site name, with the server name in parentheses:
Despite the limitation of only 5 servers for the entry level plan, you can still administer unlimited sites across those servers.
If you have more than 5 servers already, you will be able to continue to use your existing servers, but you will have to upgrade in order to add any more. [source]
If your invitees can’t visit the “My Circles” page in their account to accept an invitation, but instead are redirected to the Connect page, have them authenticate their Github account, skip the step about adding a Server Provider, and then their account will be allowed access to the My Circles page.
You can administer your circles by choosing “My Circles” from the account dropdown:
This is a great move for Forge, and one I’ll benefit from greatly. Now, rather than having to share my individual login information with all of my developers–and our contractors–I can now choose specific permissions for each developer based on the project, and I can let them do it using their own logins instead of sharing my own password around. Good stuff.