Backing up data
This page describes how to back up your JIRA data, and establish processes for maintaining continual backups. Backing up your JIRA data is the first step in upgrading your server to a new JIRA revision, or splitting your JIRA instance across multiple servers. See also Restoring data and Restoring a project from backup.
Creating a complete backup of JIRA consists of two stages:
1. Backing up database contents
There are two possibilities: native database backup tools, or JIRA's XML backup utility.
Using native database backup tools
All serious databases come with tools to back up and restore databases (the 'MS' in RDBMS). We strongly recommend these tools in preference to the XML backup option described below, as they:
- ensure integrity of the database by taking the backup at a single point in time
- are much faster and less resource-intensive than JIRA's XML backup.
- integrate with existing backup strategies (e.g. allowing one backup run for all database-using apps).
- may allow for incremental (as opposed to 'full') backups, saving disk space.
- avoid character encoding and format issues relating to JIRA's use of XML as a backup format.
Note: For all of the following procedures, you must be logged in as a user with the JIRA Administrators global permission.
Using JIRA's XML backup utility
To perform a once-off backup, e.g. before an upgrade, follow the steps below.
You can also configure scheduled XML backups, as described in Automating JIRA application backups.
- Choose > System.
- Select Import & Export > Backup System to open the Backup JIRA data page.
Screenshot: The Backup JIRA Data Page
As shown in the screenshot above, the backup will be stored within the
exportsubdirectory of the JIRA application home directory.
- In 'File name' field, type the name of the backup file.
Ensure that JIRA has the necessary file system permissions to write to this location. See the Create a dedicated operating system account section for more information.
- Click the 'Backup' button and wait while your JIRA data is backed up.
JIRA will save your XML backup as a zipped archive file.
- When the backup is complete, a message will be displayed, confirming that JIRA has written its data to the file you specified.
2. Backing up the
It’s crucial that you back up your JIRA application’s
data directory, which is a sub-directory of the JIRA application home directory (
jira-home for short). The
data directory contains application data for your JIRA instance. For example, issue attachments are stored in the
There’s no one specific way to back up the data directory, but here are a couple of methods you might consider:
- On MS Windows, a batch script copying the directory can be written and scheduled periodically (Programs > Accessories > System Tools > Scheduled Tasks).
- On Linux/Solaris, you can write a small shell script, placed in
/etc/cron.daily, backing up files to a directory like
/var/backup/jira. It is best to copy an existing script in
/etc/cron.dailyto ensure local conventions (file locations, lockfiles, permissions) are adhered to.
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