JIRA is now available as three separate applications, JIRA Software, JIRA Service Desk, and JIRA Core. For more information on administering these applications, refer to the Administering JIRA Applications documentation.

Setting your JIRA Home Directory

The JIRA Home Directory contains key data that help define how JIRA works. You must have a JIRA home directory specified for your JIRA instance before you can start it. This document describes how to specify the location of the JIRA home directory for your JIRA instance.

One JIRA home per JIRA instance

You can only have one JIRA Home Directory per JIRA installation. If you have multiple JIRA installations, you will need to set up a JIRA Home Directory for each installation. A lock is placed at the root level of a JIRA Home Directory when it is created to ensure that it can only used by one JIRA installation.

You only need to specify the location of the root directory for your JIRA home. The sub-directories will be created automatically when JIRA is started or when you use a function in JIRA that requires a particular sub-directory.

On this page:

How do I set my JIRA home?

There are a few methods available for specifying the location of your JIRA Home Directory in JIRA. However, please be aware of the notes below before your specify this location.

Recommended Methods

The recommended methods for specifying the location of your JIRA Home Directory in JIRA are to:

  • Use the JIRA Configuration Tool to change the location of your JIRA Home Directory.
    (info) The JIRA Configuration Tool is not available in JIRA WAR distributions.
  • Edit the jira-application.properties file and set the value of the 'jira.home' property to the desired location for your JIRA Home Directory (this location should be something different than the application directory, or you may run into problems later). If you are specifying this location's path on Windows, use double back-slashes ("\") between subdirectories. For example, X:\\path\\to\\JIRA\‌\Home.
    (info)If you define an UNC path in Microsoft Windows, be sure to double escape the leading backslash: \\\\machinename\\path\\to\\JIRA\\home
    (info) See the JIRA Installation Directory page to find where this file is located.
  • Set an environment variable named JIRA_HOME in your operating system whose value is the location of your JIRA Home Directory. To do this:
    • On Windows, do one of the following:
      • Configure this environment variable through the Windows user interface (typically through 'My Computer' or 'Computer')
      • At the command prompt, enter the following command (with your own JIRA Home path) before running JIRA from the command prompt:
        • set JIRA_HOME=X:\path\to\JIRA\Home
          (warning) Please set your JIRA_HOME  environment variable value using this format, where:
          • X is the drive letter where your JIRA Home Directory is located and
          • no spacing has been added around the equal sign ('=')
      • Specify the command above in a batch file used to start JIRA.
    • On Linux/Solaris, do one of the following:
      • Enter the following command at a shell/console prompt (with your own JIRA Home path) before running JIRA:
        • export JIRA_HOME=/path/to/jira/home
      • Specify the command above in a script used to start JIRA.

(warning) Please Note: If you have specified different values for a 'jira.home' property in the jira-application.properties file and a JIRA_HOME environment variable, the value of the JIRA_HOME environment variable takes precedence.

Alternative Method

Alternatively, you can specify the location of your JIRA Home Directory as property within your application server:

  • 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 (or jira.xml file for JIRA WAR).
    (info) The server.xml file is located within the conf subdirectory of your JIRA Installation Directory and for JIRA WAR, the jira.xml file is typically located within the conf/Catalina/localhost subdirectory of the Apache Tomcat installation running JIRA:

(warning) Please Note: A 'jira.home' web context property defined in your application server overrides the value of the 'jira.home' property defined in your jira-application.properties file. However, a JIRA_HOME environment variable defining your JIRA Home Directory will override either of these 'jira.home' values.

What location should I specify for my JIRA home?

You can specify any location on a disk for your JIRA home directory. Please be sure to specify an absolute path.

Please note that you cannot use the same JIRA home directory for multiple instances of JIRA. We recommend locating your JIRA Home Directory completely independently of the JIRA Installation Directory (i.e. not nesting one within the other) as this will minimize information being lost during major operations (e.g. backing up and restoring instances).

How do I change my JIRA home?

To change the location of your JIRA home directory,

  1. Set your JIRA home to the new location, using your preferred method as described in "How do I set my JIRA home?" (above).
  2. Restart JIRA.

What is stored in the JIRA Home Directory?

The following page describes the data stored in the JIRA Home Directory: JIRA Home Directory.


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10 Archived comments

  1. User avatar


    It would help if you actually explained WHAT is to reside at JIRA home.

    03 Dec 2012
    1. User avatar


      What this guy said!

      05 Dec 2012
    1. User avatar


      Seriously! What the hell is wrong with them. It's like they've expertly managed to skirt around the core of the issue.

      08 Jan 2013
  2. User avatar


    Yes, please define what should reside inside the JIRA home directory.  If a previous version used the installation directory as the home directory, copying the entire contents to the new home causes lots of duplication.

    18 Dec 2012
  3. User avatar


    I believe what you are looking for is here:  JIRA Home Directory

    18 Dec 2012
    1. User avatar


      Thanks, Anon.

      08 Jan 2013
  4. User avatar

    Andrew Lui [Atlassian Technical Writer]


    As mentioned in the comment above, this page describes what is in the JIRA home directory: JIRA Home Directory. This page was linked in the document above, but I've added a new section referencing it, to make it clearer.

    Kind Regards,

    08 Jan 2013
    1. User avatar


      Thanks, Andrew. Appreciate that.

      08 Jan 2013
  5. User avatar


    Hi, all.

    I've faced the following issue while trying to start JIRA as a service (when starting start-jira.bat everything goes OK):

    After I checked localhost_yyyy_mm_dd.log file, I found out an error there, saying that the JIRA Home directory is not specified. But it was specified in the environment variables, which (as mentioned in the documentation) should override the jira-application.properties settings. After I added the path to the jira-application.properties file and restarted JIRA service, everything worked OK.

    Isn't it an issue there?

    07 Jul 2013
  6. User avatar


    During JIRA installation, I elected to install the JIRA data in C:\Atlassian\Application Data\JIRA. Note the space between "Application Data." How do I change this after the fact, so it's C:\Atlassian\ApplicationData\JIRA (without space).

    05 Feb 2014
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