Importing issues from Jira server applications

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You can import issues into Jira cloud applications from existing Jira server applications. After the import, there are a few tasks you need to do.

On this page:

Importing issues from Jira applications

This import procedure overwrites all the existing data and configuration in Jira cloud applications and cross-application settings.

Before you begin

  • If you're migrating to Jira Software Cloud, and you're using Jira Server 6.4 (and earlier) and Jira Agile 6.7 (and earlier), you must first upgrade to Jira Software Server 7.0 or above.
  • (warning) This import procedure overwrites all the existing data and configuration in Jira cloud applications and cross-application settings. For example, issues and their attachments, look and feel configuration, and users and group memberships. Please be aware that if you choose to import data with this procedure after you have used Jira cloud applications for a while, you will lose all the data input in the interim.
  • This process is recommended for those 3rd party systems which require direct database access to perform data import (e.g. Bugzilla and Mantis). In this case, exposing such connection to Jira cloud applications would be either insecure (for both sides) or impractical (due to performance issues - very chatty remote connection), so this procedure is used instead.
  • Restrictions:

    • Character encoding — Jira cloud applications use UTF-8 encoding. If your Jira instance uses other character encoding methods, you cannot import data to Jira cloud applications.
    • Third-party issue trackers only: If you do not have a Jira server application, download the same version or an earlier version from the Jira Downloads Archive and obtain an evaluation license for it from


1. Get the data

Third-party issue trackers only: Import data from your existing third-party issue trackers to a Jira server application. Follow the instructions here

  1. Log in as an administrator. Then at the top right of the screen, choose   > System.

  2. Then choose Restore system in the Import and Export section.
    The Jira Import Wizard appears. Read the prerequisites to view the supported formats for the data to be imported.

  3. In your Jira Server application, create an XML backup of the issue data with the Jira XML backup utility and then compress the attachments. For instructions, refer to the Backing Up Data page.

  4. Optional: If you want to import avatars or logos, back them up as well. To do this, compress the /data/avatars and /data/logos directories individually. Make sure that the /avatars and /logos directories are at the top level.

Supported file formats for the backup data:

  • Issues: XML, Zip containing XML file (.zip), GZipped XML file (.xml.gz), BZip2 XML file (.xml.bz2)

    From Jira 4.4 onward, it is recommended that you use the Zip that Jira generates during backup. If you do not use it, your data might not be completely restored.

  • Attachments, avatars and logos: .zip.tar.gz/.tgz, .tar.bz2

2. Import the data

  1. Upload the files to the cloud by using WebDAV. (For backup files larger than 4GB, refer to Uploading Large files to WebDAV)

  2. Log in as an administrator. Then at the top right of the screen, choose   > System.

  3. Then choose Restore system in the Import and Export section.

  4. Click the Next button and follow the instructions on the wizard to finish the import process.

    The wizard checks URLs in the specified XML backup, and will let you choose whether or not to update URLs to point to the new Jira cloud application.

After the import

Granting application access to new users

The import process does not honor the default application access settings and does not give access to any applications to new users. You must grant application access to these users for them to be able to log in.

For information on how to assign application access, see Managing application access.

Setting permissions

Jira application permissions

In your old Jira applications, if you have made changes to the default 'Jira Administrators' global permissions, for example you added a group called managers to the 'Jira Administrators' global permission, you must configure the Jira global permission settings in your Jira cloud applications after the import.

This is because the import process does not import the settings of the 'Jira System Administrators' and 'Jira Administrators' global permissions. The other global permission settings such as 'Browse Users' are imported.

  • 'Jira System Administrators': As Jira cloud applications are hosted products, you do not have the Jira System Administrators permission. Hence, there is no configuration required for this permission.

  • Jira Administrators' global permission: configure this permission by adding groups and users to them as needed.

Permissions for other applications

Application permissions are managed in each application individually. If your site has other cloud applications, e.g. Confluence or Bamboo, refer to Managing application access for information on how to configure permissions for these applications.

Last modified on May 29, 2018

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