Integrate with Azure DevOps

Isabel White
Written by Isabel White
Updated

Available on the Essentials plan and higher

If you and your team use Azure DevOps, use our integration to transition seamlessly from product discovery to product delivery. With this integration, you'll be able to push prioritized features and subfeatures into Azure DevOps and track their status - without having to leave Productboard. Our optional two-way sync ensures names and descriptions are always up to date in either tool!

 

Note: Our Azure DevOps integration works with both Azure DevOps Services (Cloud) and Azure DevOps Server (On-premise). Instructions for both configurations are listed below. Not sure which Azure product your organization has? See Microsoft's documentation here.

 

In this article:

Configure your Azure DevOps Integration

Note: You will need Azure DevOps Administrator permissions and Productboard admin access to configure this integration. If you are using Azure DevOps Server (On-premise), please see directions below before configuring these steps.

 

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  1. Click the bottom left menu.
  2. Select Integrations.
  3. Beside Azure DevOps, select [+] to add a new integration

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  1. Give your integration a name. You can change this at any time.
  2. Add the URL of your Azure DevOps server, ending with the name of your organization (e.g. https:// dev.azure.com/testaccount). Note: If you're using a legacy version of Azure DevOps, your URL may have a format like http://testaccount.visualstudio.com instead.
  3. Click the button Create Integration. You will be taken to a new screen:

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  1. Click Open Azure DevOps. You'll be directed to the Personal Tokens page of your Azure DevOps admin account. The user who is configuring the integration has to be a member of “Project Collection Service Accounts“ in ADO.
  2. If you need to find your way back to the Personal Tokens page, you can navigate there via User Settings > Security > Personal access tokens.
  3. Click New Token.

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  1. Give your token a name (i.e. "Productboard").
  2. Double-check that you've selected the Organization which corresponds with the URL you entered into productboard, e.g. if you entered https:// dev.azure.com/, make sure "dev" is selected.
  3. Under the Expiration field, select "Custom defined" from the drop-down menu.
  4. Using the calendar drop-down, select the furthest possible date from today.
  5. Under the Work Items category, select "Read & Write".
  6. Click "Show all scopes".

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  1. Under the Notifications category, select "Read & write".
  2. Click Create.

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  1. Copy your unique token. You won't be able to do this again in the future, so don't forget!
  2. Return to your Productboard Integrations page.

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  1. Paste your unique token into the field and click Authorize integration.
  2. You will see a field named Token Status. If this field says ✅ Valid, your integration configuration is complete! Finally, you'll want to associate this integration with the relevant products in your account.

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  1. On the Features board, click the Tasks icon in your right sidebar.
  2. Find your Azure DevOps integration (it might be collapsed under a menu, as shown above).
  3. Click on the name of your integration.

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  1. Click the toggle to display your integration.
  2. Select the products you wish to be associated with this integration.

Configure your Azure DevOps Server (On-premise) Integration

  1. Ensure you are running Azure DevOps Server, version 2018 (Team Foundation Server 2018) or higher. For more information, contact support@productboard.com
  2. Whitelist the following static IP addresses on your firewall with port 443:
    100.25.97.81
    35.174.223.66
    52.6.23.216
  3. Follow the instructions above for configuring your Productboard <> Azure DevOps integration.

Note: If you encounter a message saying the address doesn't exist, is unavailable, or that there was a timeout, check with your network administrator to ensure Productboard has access to your Azure DevOps network. Your Azure DevOps on-prem setup needs to be in a public network, with a public IP address. The IP address can be inaccessible from the Internet in general, but it must be made available to Productboard.

Push a feature or subfeature from Productboard into Azure DevOps

There are two ways to push a feature from Productboard into Azure DevOps:

From the list view of your Features board:

 

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  1. Make sure you have enabled the Azure DevOps column in Tasks via the right sidebar.
  2. Click on the button with the Azure DevOps logo.
  3. Associate the feature or subfeature with an Azure DevOps project and work item type.
  4. Click Push. The item should sync immediately.

From a feature detail view:

 

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  1. Scroll down to the Azure DevOps field.
  2. Select the AzureDevOps logo.
  3. Associate the feature or subfeature with an Azure DevOps project and work item type.
  4. Click Push. The item should sync immediately.

Note: Regardless of how you've chosen to represent an idea in Productboard, you can push a Productboard feature to Azure DevOps as any type of work item (including user story, bug, task, etc). You can change the work item type from within Azure DevOps at any time.

 

Link a feature or subfeature to an existing Azure DevOps work item

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  1. In the Features list view with Tasks enabled, click the Azure DevOps logo or in the Feature detail view, scroll down until you find the Azure DevOps integration field and click the Azure DevOps logo.
  2. Click Link to Existing.
  3. Select the appropriate Azure DevOps project.
  4. Enter the Azure DevOps Work Item ID. Productboard will automatically display the Work Item type, name, and status. Confirm that the listed Work Item is correct.
  5. Click Push.

Understand how fields map across Productboard and Azure DevOps

Here's how your feature/subfeature information will map across both tools:

 

In Productboard:

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In Azure DevOps:

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  1. Feature or subfeature name
  2. Feature or subfeature description
  3. Azure DevOps work item status
  4. Navigate between systems - click the blue button to navigate into Azure DevOps, click the URL to navigate into Productboard

A few notes about subfeatures:

  • While subfeatures are often pushed to Azure DevOps as user stories, product backlog items, issues, or features (depending on your board setup), you can use any other custom work item type as well.
  • No feature <> subfeature relationship will be carried over to Azure DevOps.
  • Within Productboard, you can change a feature to a subfeature, or vice versa, without impacting the associated work item in Azure DevOps.

Filter by Azure DevOps status

See at a glance which features are complete, in progress, or blocked by filtering via Azure DevOps status.

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  1. Click the Filter icon in the header.
  2. Select Tasks.
  3. Find your Azure DevOps integration.
  4. Select the status(es) you wish to see.

 

Use two-way sync to update fields automatically across tools

Productboard's optional two-way sync with Azure DevOps synchronizes the following fields:

  • Productboard Feature Name <> Azure DevOps Work Item Title
  • Productboard Feature Description <> Azure DevOps Work Item Description
NOTE: Two-way sync is disabled by default. It must be explicitly enabled in the Integration settings (see below).

 

How to enable two-way sync

Prerequisites

  1. The user who originally authorized the Productboard <> Azure DevOps integration needs the following permissions, at least temporarily, in order to enable the two-way sync (see Configure your Azure DevOps Integration).
  2. The account should be a member of Project Collection Service Account or Project Collection Administrators groups in Azure DevOps. Detailed instructions can be found on the auth screen in Settings where a new auth token can be entered.

Turning on two-way sync

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  1. Go to Productboard's Integration Settings.
  2. Select the Azure DevOps integration for which you want to enable two-way sync.

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  1. Scroll down to the section called Synchronization.
  2. Check the fields you would like to sync bidirectionally and click Save sync settings.

Two way sync limitations

  • No data will be synced retroactively when the two-way synchronization is enabled.
  • There may be minor discrepancies when syncing rich text descriptions between Productboard and Azure DevOps, and some formatting may be lost.
  • Minor text corruptions may occur after multiple syncs. These can be fixed with manual edits, and both editors provide version history.
  • Inline images are displayed only with the user is logged into both systems, as the images are not stored locally.
  • Productboard edits will be written to Azure DevOps using the account of the user who authorized the integration.

Troubleshooting

I can't sync from Azure DevOps to Productboard!

Check to make sure your integrations have permissions to modify webhook subscriptions in Azure DevOps. This will be visible in the token status section under your integration settings.

To resolve this issue, ensure the user has the appropriate permissions, and that the account is a member of the Project Collection Service Account or Project Collection Administrators groups in Azure DevOps. Detailed instructions can be found on the auth screen in settings where a new auth token can be entered.

Once permissions have been updated, the integration will synchronize fields within approximately one day. Alternately, reauthorizing the integration using a new token will force a new sync.

 

Deactivate your Azure DevOps integration

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  1. Navigate to the Settings > Integrations page.
  2. Click the green toggle into the "off" position.

Remove your Azure DevOps integration

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  1. Navigate to the Settings > Integrations page.
  2. Click the name of the integration you wish to deactivate.

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  1. Click Remove to delete the integration.

 

Frequently asked questions

How do I know whether my organization is using Azure DevOps Services (Cloud) or Azure DevOps Server (On-premise)?

 

See Microsoft documentation here.

 

Can I connect Productboard to multiple Azure DevOps projects?

Yes! Once you've connected your Azure DevOps workspace, you will be able to push features to any project in that workspace. Each time you push a feature to Azure DevOps, you have the option to select the appropriate Azure DevOps project:

 

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Can I connect Productboard to multiple Azure DevOps instances?

Yes, this feature is available to customers on a productboard Enterprise plan. You can add additional Azure DevOps instances to the same Productboard instance via Settings > Integrations. Simply select the + again:

 

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Can I change the name of my Azure DevOps column? It's way too long and it's cluttering up my workspace.

Yes! Note that this will not change what the integration is called on your Settings page, though you can change that if you wish.

 

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  1. Click the name of your integration.
  2. Edit the name as you wish.
  3. Click out of the name field to save automatically.

 

Can I see a history of who pushed features into my Azure DevOps account and when they did it?

Yes! After pushing a feature or subfeature into Azure DevOps, that work item's History screen will display who pushed a feature into Azure DevOps, when they did so, and what token they used:

 

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Can I change the color of my Azure DevOps statuses?

Productboard will automatically sync with the colors used in your Azure DevOps account. If you wish to change your status colors in Azure DevOps, see this Azure DevOps documentation.

 

Help! I'm seeing an error message when I try to set up my integration.

Oh no! Let us help: Troubleshooting Azure DevOps.

 

I have questions about the security of the Productboard <> Azure DevOps integration.

We're happy to answer those: Azure DevOps - Security FAQ.

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