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As far as i can tell drupal allows me to make a user role able to edit other user profiles(edit the profile fields) only if the role they have includes "Administer users."

When this is set a role can see the edit tab on all profile pages and make edits to other user profiles. Good we want that. But this also allows the user to administer accounts as well(add/remove accounts). Bad, we want that restricted so that only account admins can add/remove accounts. We want a role for a "lower tier" user to be able to edit profile fields as needed, but not administer accounts.

I use the Fields Permissions module to control access to fields. Works great, allows that different user roles can or can not see and/or edit different fields for other users. This lets us to have internal use only fields on our user profiles that only appropriate staff can access. But this is not controlling if a user has the ability to edit user profiles or not. Just what specific fields in user profiles can be seen or edited IF the user already has the rights to edit other user profiles first. That is still controlled with the "Administer users" setting, which seems to only give the rights for account administration as well as profile editing all in one.

Can we separate the rights to edit user profiles from administering user accounts, allowing for a role that can edit user profiles but not administer accounts?

Thanks for any help on this one.

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This looks like it should do the trick :

https://www.drupal.org/project/administerusersbyrole

This module allows site builders to set up fine-grained permissions for allowing "sub-admin" users to edit and delete other users — more specific than Drupal Core's all-or-nothing 'administer users' permission. It also provides and enforces a 'create users' permission.

The normal administer users permission is split out into create, edit and cancel users per role.

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