Very much a newbie to the world of SharePoint. I am a farm administrator but when I go to one of the sites in SP, I don't seem to have any permissions to do anything beyond a 'normal' user.

I can create a new page and view all site content, but that's it. I can't edit permissions or anything like that.

Apologies for the layman terms but can anyone point me in the right direction? Have tried Googling but haven't come across anything that has helped

  • 3
    have you tried making yourself a site collection administrator?
    – HarryB
    Commented Nov 4, 2015 at 12:24
  • I've made myself a secondary one (I think) and that seems to have resolved the issue but why as a farm administrator, wouldn't I have those permissions?
    – pee2pee
    Commented Nov 4, 2015 at 12:53
  • Farm Administrators have no access to content by default.
    – Seb
    Commented Nov 4, 2015 at 13:15

2 Answers 2


Site collection admin and farm admin are two different roles. Being a farm admin allows you to perform farm level operations such as working with service applicatons, managing web applications in the farm etc.. whereas the power of the site collection admins is only limited to that particular site collection. This design allows delegation of responsilbites to people at various levels with in an organisation.


As HarryB mentioned His answer. Their are 2 types of admins,

Farm Admin: there are bit of confusion about the farm admin account, that it has full control on the farm and can access everything. That's not true, it can access everything from back-end expect from the Contents. If you want to access to content then you can add farm Admin account into the policy of Web for the desired web application then farm admin can access everything inside the Web app.

Members of the Farm Administrators group have Full Control permissions to and responsibility for all servers in the server farm. Members can perform all administrative tasks in Central Administration for the server or server farm. They can assign administrators to manage service applications, which are instances of shared services. This group does not have access to individual sites or their content.

Site colelction AdminsThese administrators have the Full Control permission level on all Web sites in a site collection. They have Full Control access to all site content in that site collection, even if they do not have explicit permissions on that site. They can audit all site content and receive any administrative message. A primary and a secondary site collection administrator can be specified during the creation of a site collection.

Choose administrators and owners for the administration hierarchy in SharePoint 2013

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