Specifying Field Behavior

A field configuration defines the behavior of all fields available in your JIRA installation, including JIRA's own 'fixed'/'built in' fields (known as 'system' fields) and custom fields.

For each field, a field configuration specifies:

  • the description that appears under the field when an issue is edited
  • whether the field is hidden or visible
  • whether the field is required (i.e. the field will be validated to ensure it has been given a value) or optional
  • (for text fields only) which renderer to use

When defining field behavior for one or more JIRA projects and the fields used by the issue types in these projects, you typically start by adding one or more new field configurations (see below). You then begin modifying the behavior of individual fields in these new field configurations.

(tick) A new field configuration should be added for each project and issue type combination which requires specific fields to be present and/or fields that express unique behavior.

You can then associate each new field configuration with a different issue type through a 'field configuration scheme'. A field configuration scheme can then be associated with one or more projects.

This process of association gives you the flexibility of defining field behavior on a per project, per issue type basis. For more information, please see the Overview Diagram.

On this page:

Managing multiple field configurations

You can create multiple field configurations for use on separate projects and issue types.

About the 'Default Field Configuration'

When JIRA is installed, the Default Field Configuration is created automatically. All new projects are associated with this configuration. This configuration is also used for projects that are not associated with a Field Configuration Scheme.

(info) It is not possible to delete the Default Field Configuration.

Adding a field configuration

  1. Log in as a user with the JIRA Administrators global permission.
  2. Choose > Issues. Select Fields > Field Configurations to open the View Field Configurations page, which lists all your field configurations.
    (tick) Keyboard shortcut: g + g + start typing field configurations
  3. Click the Add New Field Configuration button to open the Add Field Configuration dialog box.
  4. Complete the Add Field Configuration dialog box:
    • Name — enter a short phrase that best describes your new field configuration.
    • Description (optional but recommended) — enter a sentence or two to describe when this field configuration should be used.

Editing a field configuration

  1. Log in as a user with the JIRA Administrators  global permission.
  2. Choose > Issues. Select Fields > Field Configurations to open the View Field Configurations page, which lists all your field configurations.
    (tick) Keyboard shortcut: g + g + start typing field configurations
  3. Click the Edit link next to the field configuration you wish to edit.
  4. On the Edit Field Configuration page, edit the field configuration's Name and Description.

(info) Please note: The Default Field Configuration cannot be edited.

Deleting a field configuration

  1. Log in as a user with the JIRA Administrators global permission.
  2. Choose > Issues. Select Fields > Field Configurations to open the View Field Configurations page, which lists all your field configurations.
    (tick) Keyboard shortcut: g + g + start typing field configurations
  3. Click the Delete link next to the field configuration you wish to delete.
    (info) You will be prompted to confirm this operation.

(info) Please note:

  • The Default Field Configuration cannot be deleted.
  • You can only delete a field configuration that is not associated with a field configuration scheme. The Delete link will not be available for field configurations which are associated with one or more field configuration schemes.

Copying a field configuration

  1. Log in as a user with the JIRA Administrators global permission.
  2. Choose > Issues. Select Fields > Field Configurations to open the View Field Configurations page, which lists all your field configurations.
    (tick) Keyboard shortcut: g + g + start typing field configurations
  3. Click the Copy link next to the field configuration you wish to copy.
  4. On the Copy Field Configuration page, specify the Name and Description for the field configuration to be copied.
    (info) The (initial) field settings between the original and copied field configurations will be identical.

(info) Please Note: a newly created field configuration will not take effect until you:

  1. Associate your new field configuration to one or more issue types.
  2. Associate that field configuration with one or more projects.

See Associating Field Behavior with Issue Types for more information.

Modifying field behavior

To modify the behavior of fields in JIRA, you need to modify the field configurations that those fields have been defined in.

To modify the behavior of a set of fields in a field configuration:

  1. Log in as a user with the JIRA Administrators global permission.
  2. Choose > Issues. Select Fields > Field Configurations to open the View Field Configurations page, which lists all your field configurations.
    (tick) Keyboard shortcut: g + g + start typing field configurations
  3. Locate the field configuration of interest and click the Configure link to open the View Field Configuration page, which lists all system and custom fields in your JIRA installation for that field configuration.
    (info) Please Note:
    • The Edit link only allows you to change the Name and Description of the field configuration, not of individual fields.
    • Note that the Edit link is not available for the Default Field Configuration on the View Field Configuration page (listing all field configurations defined in your JIRA installation).
  4. In the Operations  column, you can perform the following actions for any field:
    • Edit — change the field's description (i.e. help text).
    • Hide/Show — hide the field from view or show it.
    • Require/Optional — set a field to be required (so that whenever a field is edited it must be given a value) or optional.
    • Renderers — change a field's renderer (see Configuring Renderers for more information).

(info) Please Note: a newly created field configuration will not take effect until you:

  1. Associate your new field configuration to one or more issue types and then
  2. Associate that field configuration with one or more projects.

See Associating Field Behavior with Issue Types for more information.

Editing a field's description

Fields can be given descriptions to better identify the meaning of the field. These descriptions are typically displayed under the fields they are associated through JIRA's user interface, for example, when creating an issue or editing it:

Screenshot: Sample description text shown beneath the 'Assignee' field

To edit the description of a field:

  1. Follow the first three steps above (in Modifying field behavior) to access the field configuration whose field's description you wish to edit.
  2. Click the Edit link next to the field you want to change and update the field's description.
  3. Click the Update button to save your changes.

Hiding or showing a field

If your organisation or project has no use for a particular field, you have the option to hide it. Hiding a field will ensure that the the field does not appear on any screens (i.e. issue operation screens, workflow transition screens) where the field configuration applies.

(info) Please note:

  • Hiding a field in the field configuration is distinct from not adding a field to a screen. Fields hidden through the field configuration will be hidden in all applicable screens, regardless of whether or not they have been added to the screen.
  • For fields that have a default value: If the field is hidden in the field configuration, then it will not receive a value when an issue is created, regardless of whether the field is present on the Create Issue screen(s). (The following fields can have a default value: Resolution , Status , Priority , Issue Type , Security Level and custom fields.)
  • The fields Summary and Issue Type cannot be hidden and as such there is no Hide option available for these fields.

To hide or show a field:

  1. Follow the first three steps above (in Modifying field behavior) to access the field configuration whose fields you wish to hide or show.
  2. Do either of the following:
    • If you no longer want to expose a field through JIRA's user interface, click the Hide link associated with that field.
      (info) You can make this field visible again at any time by clicking the Show link.
    • If you want to show a field (which is currently hidden) through JIRA's user interface, click the Show link associated with that field.
      (info) You can hide this field again at any time by clicking the Hide link.

Making a field required or optional

Certain fields within your organisation may be compulsory for issues. In this case you can set a field to be required, so that JIRA validates that the field has been given a value whenever an issue is edited. If a required field has not been given a value, JIRA will return an error informing the user that the field should be filled, e.g.:

Screenshot: Sample validation of the 'Fix Version/s' field

To make a field required or optional:

  1. Follow the first three steps above (in Modifying field behavior) to access the field configuration whose fields you wish to hide or show.
    (info) When viewing a field configuration (see above), fields which are already required have that indication next to their name.
  2. Do either of the following:
    • To make a field mandatory when used through JIRA's user interface, click the Required link associated with that field.
      (info) The text Required will appear next to the field's name.
    • To make a field optional, click the Optional link associated with that field.
      (info) The Required text next to the field's name will disappear.

(info) Please note:

  • Fields that are hidden cannot be set to required.
  • If you make a field Required, ensure that the field is present on your Create Issue screen(s).

Changing a field's renderer

JIRA renderers affect how a JIRA field's content is either displayed to the user (for text fields) or how a user enters field data (for multi-select fields), thereby enabling you to choose a style which best suits your organisation and your users.

JIRA currently ships with the following renderers:

  • For text fields:
    • The Default Text Renderer, which displays plain text; and
    • The Wiki Style Renderer (utilising the Confluence wiki engine), which displays rich text (HTML).
      (info) To see how a 'Wiki Style Renderer' field will look when it is displayed to a user, please see Editing Rich-Text Fields.
  • For multi-select fields:
    • The Autocomplete Renderer, which allows the user to start typing text which is then 'autocompleted', or to select from a dropdown list of options; and
    • The Select List Renderer, which simply provides a dropdown list of options.
      (info) For custom fields of type Multi Select, only the Select List Renderer is available. Furthermore, when modifying a field configuration, you will not be able to configure a Multi Select custom field's renderer.

Before you change the renderer for a specific field, please read Configuring Renderers, paying particular attention to the Implications for JIRA operations section.

To change the renderer for a specific field:

  1. Follow the first three steps above (in Modifying field behavior) to access the field configuration whose field's renderer you wish to change.
    (info) When viewing a field configuration (see above), the Name column indicates which renderers are currently enabled for all renderable fields, with the current renderer shown in brackets immediately below its field name.
  2. Click the Renderers link for the field you want to change. This will take you to a page where you will have the option to select a renderer from all configured and available renderers.
  3. This page will warn you if there are issues that will be affected by the change. If no issues will be affected then the warning does not show. From this page, choose the renderer you wish to use and click Update.

(info) Changing the renderer only affects how a JIRA field's content is displayed or how a user interacts with a multi-select field — it does not affect the issue data that exists in the system. Hence, you can therefore toggle between renderer types safely.

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Thanks for your feedback!

39 Archived comments

  1. User avatar

    Anonymous

    Is it possible to configure different fields' visibility for different users working on same Project ?

    09 Feb 2011
  2. User avatar

    Anonymous

    • How can we limit the setting of the Fix Version to a few managers for same Project. And it should be Viewable by all.
    09 Feb 2011
    1. User avatar

      Mike Miller

      You can do this by creating a workflow action that is restricted to a role or group. This workflow action can have a screen that can set it. You can then remove the field from your normal edit screen. You will want to override the view screen to show the field as well.

      24 Feb 2011
      1. User avatar

        Dave Thomas

        There's no field-level security, so any user who has access to edit the issue will still have the ability to change the Fix Version via a bulk edit.   With that caveat, I think Mike's suggestion is about the best you can do.

        01 Mar 2011
  3. User avatar

    Anonymous

    Is it possible to modify a built-in fields attributes i.e. change the Affects Version/s field to be a selectable list?

    29 Mar 2011
    1. User avatar

      Anonymous

      If anyone has the answer to this question it would be of great value for us as well. Otherwise you have to create custom fields for all default fields that are not exactly as you want them to be.. 

      19 May 2011
      1. User avatar

        Jason C. Hammons

        Please see Configuring Renderers.

        29 Jun 2011
  4. User avatar

    Anonymous

    Can I change the display field name of a system built in field?  If so, how?

    23 Aug 2011
    1. User avatar

      Anonymous

      Please provide the answer to this, someone.

      07 Mar 2012
      1. User avatar

        Jason C. Hammons

        See this forum post for an overview and Customizing Text for current details.

        07 Mar 2012
  5. User avatar

    Anonymous

    Can I set a default value for a field? In particular, the issue description field.

    06 Sep 2011
    1. User avatar

      Anonymous

      I found my answer to the above here: https://jira.atlassian.com/browse/JRA-4812

      08 Sep 2011
  6. User avatar

    Anonymous

    Hi, I associated a Field con. scheme ( with 9 fields ) to project.

    The screen config scheme also have 9 fileds. But while creting issue I see only 7 fields.

    Wonding missing a something? Can you help ?

    Thanks

    Soma

     

    12 Sep 2011
  7. User avatar

    Anonymous

    Any chance of making all fields default as 'hidden', then activated when it's configured.  De-selecting fields is a real pain when you have multiple field configurations.

    11 Oct 2011
  8. User avatar

    Anonymous

    bankwarningHi,

    We have created a custom field called "Product" which is a Select list. We have different projects working with different products. How do we limit the select list values per project so that project "A" only sees some values in the "Product" list and not all entries?

    /Magnus

    04 Nov 2011
    1. User avatar

      Anonymous

      Is this possible? Anyone? This is an important feature for us as well.

      07 Feb 2012
    1. User avatar

      Robert Smith

      Another vote for this. I can't believe that this is not a standard feature. It must be an extremely common use case. Is there a solution? I don't want to have to create different fields for different projects!

      22 Mar 2012
      1. User avatar

        Anonymous

        I'm not entirely sure whether this is still relevant for you but maybe this helps...

        You can configure the options coming up in select lists by limiting the context of the custom field to projects and issue types as required.

        In the custom field list click "configure" on the relevant field, then "add next context", choose the according issue type and/or project and confirm. Then you can define the list of options individually per project.

        16 Jul 2012
  9. User avatar

    Anonymous

    Is there any way to make a field ReadOnly?

    13 Jan 2012
    1. User avatar

      Patrik Bredin

      I would like to know that as well

      13 Mar 2013
  10. User avatar

    Ægir Þorvaldsson

    I concur with the Anon above.  I seem to remember that you could edit values for different projects that use the same custom field, so that one project sees some values while other projects see other values.   I don't see this capability now in Jira 4.x

    25 Jan 2012
  11. User avatar

    Anonymous

    How can we make the Log Work mandatory for issues, tasks ...etc?  

    07 Mar 2012
    1. User avatar

      Jason C. Hammons

      One only needs to make the 'Log Work' field required in the appropriate Field Configuration.

      08 Mar 2012
  12. User avatar

    Anonymous

    Does anyone else find this section incomprehensible?

    13 Apr 2012
    1. User avatar

      Giles Gaskell

      Hello there,

      I've tweaked the introductory section to hopefully make it clearer how field configurations are used. What other sections/aspects of this page do you find incomprehensible (so that we can improve them to make them more understandable)?

      Cheers,

      Giles.

      15 Apr 2012
  13. User avatar

    Anonymous

    Say I have a radio buttons "Yes" and "No", will it be possible to change a certain field's visibility depending on the option selected? For example, clicking "Yes" would show you a hidden text field? Thanks!

    19 Apr 2012
    1. User avatar

      Nate

      I agree with Anon, this would be a massively useful feature. 

      31 Aug 2012
    1. User avatar

      Anonymous

      I too would love to have this feature, has anyone been able to come up with how to do this?

      12 Mar 2013
    1. User avatar

      Anonymous

      Agree - I would love to see this feature. Example - a YES/NO field would display different subsequent fields based on the user's response. Would be very useful.

      20 Aug 2013
  14. User avatar

    Anonymous

    I find that the summary field is a Required field and I would like to make it optional and remove it. The button under the operations menu to toggle required to optionals is not appearing. Like to know how to get it deleted from the default scheme.

    27 Jul 2012
    1. User avatar

      Anonymous

      I am having this same issue.  I don't believe JIRA will allow you to delete the summary field from the default scheme.  I believe the answer is to disassociate your field configuration scheme from the default field configuration.  If you have a field configuration scheme that is associated to screens without the summary field, the summary field should not be required.

      The problem I have is my field configuration scheme cannot be removed from the default field configuration.  If I can do that I believe it would make the summary field not required on my screen.  Can anyone help me understand how to do this?  The edit button does not appear for the default field configuration.

      20 Aug 2012
  15. User avatar

    Anonymous

    Hi All,

    We have a Wiki Style Renderer field on our project and it is displaying data in table format using below code wiki styles syntax.

    ||heading 1||heading 2||heading 3||

    |col A1|col A2|col A3|

    |col B1|col B2|col B3|

    Here problem is that our data is showing properly in tabular form, but few of columns are not showing at right hand side as our heading are more and they are striped off. This problem is occurring in JIRA 5.0.2 and when we had used same wiki table in jira4.3.3 it is working fine and if columns and rows are more then table shows  vertical and horizontal scrollable bar with table for scrolling values. 

    Any body can please  help us why this problem is occurring in JIRA 5.0.2 version and what is solution for this.

    22 Dec 2012
  16. User avatar

    Anonymous

    Can I change the display name of JIRA custom field's on Confluence? Because some of our custom field have a long name so the custom fields occupy large horizental space of a task table of Jira. Our Confluence site displays JIRA tasks thru RSS interaction with JIRA.

    02 Feb 2013
  17. User avatar

    Andre Chaves

    Is it possible to define a "Custom field" as required? 

    The Adding a Custom Field has the state below, but I'd like to add a new field as required for a certain Issue type.  

    "Custom fields are always optional fields. This means that you can create a new custom field without requiring existing issues to be changed. The existing issues will contain no value for the new custom field, even if a default value is defined."

     

    20 Mar 2014
  18. User avatar

    Cedric Deniau

    Is it possible to make fields required only at resolution time?

    For example, Fixed Version - I don't want to make it required when the ticket is created but I do want to make it required when the ticket is resolved.

    Thanks,

    10 Jun 2014
  19. User avatar

    William Crighton [CCC]

    For any who, like me, happened across this while looking for what the &%^$(**& renderer type options are - here they are along with the code I used to obtain them:

     

    • atlassian-wiki-renderer // admin.renderer.plugin.wiki.renderer.desc
    • jira-text-renderer // admin.renderer.plugin.text.renderer.desc
    05 Aug 2014
  20. User avatar

    Patricio Walsh

    Hi, how can I set the field "Resolution" as optional?

    10 Jun 2015
    1. User avatar

      David Currie [Atlassian]

      This isn't currently possible, we have a suggestion for it tracked in  JRA-7159 - Make Resolution field optional Open . Resolution should only be displayed if you want to give it a value - for example putting it onto the screen for the 'Resolve Issue' transition. It's not expected to display it on edit screens as every time someone edit's the issue it will request a resolution.

      10 Jun 2015
  21. User avatar

    Dante De Vellis

    I've set field configurations for each of my different issue types.  However I find that whenever a new custom field is added to our installation, it automatically gets added to each of my field configurations.  So I have to go in and hit Hide quite often.  Is there a way to control this (either at the field configuration level or the custom field level)?

    Also - is there a way to make the editing of the field configuraiton easier.  Right now I have to go in and go field by field to Hide something.  Is there a way to do this in bulk (kind of like when you create a new custom field you can bulk select what screens to add it to).

    Thanks.

    Dante.

    19 Jun 2015
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