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Team sites use Microsoft 365 Groups for permissions. Communication sites use SharePoint groups.

I understand that the azure tenant has AD groups. And by default these are auto-synced with Microsoft 365 groups. Additionally you can create more Microsoft 365 groups.

My understanding is that every SharePoint site has got groups like Admin, Member, Viewer. Are these also known as SharePoint groups?

Above quote says Team sites use Microsoft 365 groups for permissions. Does this mean they don't support SharePoint groups? But aren't SharePoint groups (Admin, Member, Viewer) available by default in all sites?

Also, does Communication sites use SharePoint groups mean that communication site doesn't support Microsoft 365 groups? Does this mean that I cannot add Microsoft 365 groups as members into the SharePoint groups? So my only option is to add AD groups or individual users?

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SharePoint team sites connected with M365 groups are managed by using M365 groups. When you create a SharePoint team sites connected with M365 groups it also creates a "Team" in Microsoft teams, Group calendar in outlook, Group Plan in Planner, etc. As a best practice permissions for all these are managed using specific M365 groups associated with them.

Every SharePoint site (communication / team) has these three groups:

  • <site name> Owners
  • <site name> Members
  • <site name> Visitors

In case of SharePoint team sites connected with M365 groups, associated M365 groups are automatically added in SharePoint groups like M365 Owners group is added to <site name> Owners group and M365 Members group is added to <site name> Members.

However, if you want to use SharePoint groups for permissions, it is possible to manage SharePoint site permissions separately from the Microsoft 365 group by using SharePoint groups.


Communication sites are not connected with m365 groups by default. However, you can add Microsoft 365 groups as members into the SharePoint groups in communication sites if you want.

Check below Microsoft documentations for more understanding:

  1. Sharing and permissions in the SharePoint modern experience
  2. Planning Permissions with Group-based SharePoint Sites... when you're used to Regular SharePoint Permissions

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