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Feature Flags

Backstage offers the ability to define feature flags inside a plugin or during application creation. This allows you to restrict parts of your plugin to those individual users who have toggled the feature flag to on.

This page describes the process of defining setting and reading a feature flag. If you are looking for using feature flags with software templates that can be found under Writing Templates.

Defining a Feature Flag

In a plugin

Defining feature flag in a plugin is done by passing the name of the feature flag into the featureFlags array:

/* src/plugin.ts */
import { createPlugin, createRouteRef } from '@backstage/core-plugin-api';
import ExampleComponent from './components/ExampleComponent';

export const examplePlugin = createPlugin({
id: 'example',
routes: {
root: rootRouteRef,
featureFlags: [{ name: 'show-example-feature' }],

In the application

Defining feature flag in the application is done by adding feature flags infeatureFlags array in createApp() function call:

const app = createApp({
// ...
featureFlags: [
pluginId: '', // pluginId is required for feature flags in plugins. It can be left blank for a feature flag leveraged in the application.
name: 'tech-radar',
description: 'Enables the tech radar plugin',
// ...

Enabling Feature Flags

Feature flags are defaulted to off and can be updated by individual users in the backstage interface.

These are set by navigating to the page under Settings > Feature Flags.

The users selection is saved in the users browsers local storage. Once toggled it may be required for a user to refresh the page to see any new changes.

FeatureFlagged Component

The easiest way to control content based on the state of a feature flag is to use the FeatureFlagged component.

import { FeatureFlagged } from '@backstage/core-app-api';


<FeatureFlagged with="show-example-feature">
<NewFeatureComponent />

<FeatureFlagged without="show-example-feature">
<PreviousFeatureComponent />

Evaluating Feature Flag State

It is also possible to test the feature flag state using the FeatureFlags Api.

import { useApi, featureFlagsApiRef } from '@backstage/core-plugin-api';

const featureFlagsApi = useApi(featureFlagsApiRef);
const isOn = featureFlagsApi.isActive('show-example-feature');