Setting your Jira application home directory

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The Jira home directory contains key data that helps define how Jira works. You must have a home directory specified for your Jira instance before you can start it.

What location should I specify?

  • You can choose any location on the disk, but make sure to use an absolute path.

  • You can't use the same home directory for multiple Jira instances. Each instance must have its own home directory.

  • Locate the home directory independently of the installation directory (don't nest one within the other). This will minimize information being lost during major operations, like backing up or restoring.

Setting Jira home directory

Environment variable RECOMMENDED

We recommend setting Jira home through the JIRA_HOME environment variable, because it takes precedence over any other method. For example, if you have different paths specified in the environment variable and the properties file, Jira will use the variable.

On Linux

Use one of the following approaches:

  • Enter the following command at a shell/console prompt before running Jira.
export JIRA_HOME=/path/to/jira/home
  • Add the above command to the /bin/ script.
On Windows

Use one of the following approaches:

  • Configure the JIRA_HOME environment variable through the Windows user interface, typically through 'My Computer' or 'Computer'.
  • At the command prompt, enter the following command:
set JIRA_HOME=C:\path\to\jira\home
  • Add the above command to the \bin\start-jira.bat file.

Properties file

Add the path to the Jira home directory to the <installation-directory>/atlassian-jira/WEB-INF/classes/ file, like in the following example:

jira.home = /Users/charlie/Jira/jira_home

Notes for Windows

  • Use double back-slashes (\) between subdirectories, for example C:\\path\\to\\Jira\\home.
  • If you define a UNC path, make sure to double escape the leading backslash, for example \\\\machinename\\path\\to\\JIRA\\home.

Configuration tool

You can also change the location of your home directory by using the Jira configuration tool.

Alternative method

Alternatively, you can specify the location of your Jira home directory as property within your application server. This method would override the jira.home specified in the properties file.

  • Configure a new web context property called 'jira.home' for your application server. 

    To do this, you need to define this web context property inside a <parameter/> element (as a child of the <context/> element) in your server.xml file.

    <Context ...>
      <Parameter name="jira.home" value="c:/jira/home"/>


  • If you're using the Windows installer, you don't need to configure the Jira home directory separately, as you will be prompted to specify this location during the installation process. 

  • The Jira installer may not be able to create the home due to permission problems. If this is the case, see Jira is unable to start due to 'Could not create necessary subdirectory'

Last modified on Oct 12, 2022

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