Can't Create XML backup due to NULL directory description

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Unable to create Crowd XML backup

The following appears in the atlassian-crowd.log:

2013-03-15 13:28:33,655 http-29000-18 INFO [atlassian.xwork.interceptors.TransactionalInvocation] Invoking rollback for transaction on action '/console/secure/admin/backup.action (Backup.default())' due to throwable: java.lang.NullPointerException
    at java.util.Hashtable.put(
    at java.util.Properties.setProperty(
    at com.atlassian.crowd.file.FileConfigurationExporter.exportDirectories(


There are directories in Crowd with a NULL description. This happens due to the bug  CWD-3216 - Getting issue details... STATUS .


  • Run the following query in the Crowd Database to identify the exact directories causing the issue:

    select * from cwd_directory where description is null;
  • Navigate to those directories in Crowd >> Directories, and set a description for each of them. Re-attempt the XML export again
Last modified on Mar 30, 2016

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