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I have looked into this issue and whilst I understand that a distribution group won't be imported into SharePoint via user profile import security groups however will. I have a security group that is used for audience targeting and also setting permissions, inside that security group is another security group with all the members. However none of the members of that group are appearing in the audience membership list. Seems the only way I can get this to work is by adding the actual user account to the top level security group.

I have seen this setup on another farm and it works just fine.

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Hmm just to add to this I have noted that the top level group has been set as Domain - Local – pigeon Jul 21 '11 at 1:35
Looking over at this post Domain - Local groups are probably the cause of these issues:… – pigeon Jul 21 '11 at 2:17
Did you ever find the solution to this? If yes, could you post the answer? – Kit Menke Jul 29 '11 at 20:38
In the end the customer added accounts directly to the SharePoint security groups. – pigeon Dec 1 '11 at 5:19

1 Answer 1

up vote 0 down vote accepted
  • Sharepoint 2010 doesn’t like ‘Distribution Groups’ to be used for security or audience use – needs to be security global or universal

  • Audiences seem to only compile users from the group specified in the rule, it won’t look inside nested groups and include those users, so the nested groups need to be added directly to the audience

  • For web part audience targeting you need to use the Audience or the Domain Group but not the SharePoint group.

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