Jira 8.5 Long Term Support release upgrade guide

Customers value and trust Long Term Support releases because of continued access to critical security, stability, data integrity and performance issues that we provide until each version reaches end of life. Long Term Support release is the perfect combo of great new features and great stability.

Why you should upgrade

Features galore

Jira 8.5 is simply way better than previous releases. Have a look at these key features:

  • Issue archiving: de-clutter your instance by archiving individual issues. You can archive them within seconds, and we keep them safe for you for as long as you need.
  • Batching emails: tired of receiving separate email for every single issue update? Now, you can get them in batches that arrive at the intervals you specify. 
  • Jira Server mobile app: never lose touch with what's going on with your issues as now we're serving Jira on the go. Browse, create and comment on issues wherever, whenever.

Changes & improvements

Jira 8.5 comes with a number of changes, including features, supported platforms, and performance improvements:

Some annoying bugs fixed

Want to know more? See our change log.

Summary of the upgrade

Here's a summary of the upgrade path you'll be following:

Source version

7.6, 7.13

Already on 8.x? Go to our regular upgrade guide.

Target version8.5
MethodYou’ll be upgrading by using the tar.gz/zip archive, which involves installing a new Jira instance next to your existing one. We found this method to be the quickest and most reliable for large Jira instances.
Planned downtime

You're upgrading between 7.x to 8.x, so the Zero Downtime Upgrade method is not available for Jira Data Center. 

Downtime duration might depend on how many issues and apps you have. 

Optimize your upgrade process

We want your upgrade to be plain and quick sailing, so here are some tips you can consider to speed up the process:

Estimate your downtime
  • run the upgrade on the test environment to get an estimation of how long your upgrade might take in production. Note that in addition to the downtime related to the usual upgrade tasks, you should plan some extra time for full reindexing.  
Optional: Faster reindexing for Jira Data Center
  • Jira 8.5 brings a completely new index, which means that your old index will be incompatible after the upgrade. You will need to reindex, there’s no running away from it. However, we’ve created some procedures for advanced users that will let you speed it up, significantly reducing downtime. Learn more

Upgrading apps
  • go to  > Manage apps and look up the suggestions provided by your Universal Plugin Manager (UPM). Some apps have cross-platform compatibility and can be updated even before the upgrade. Update them in advance to speed up the upgrade process. 

  • test upgrading apps in your test environment first. Then, you'll now which apps need upgrading and which need removing before you move to production.

Check custom configuration file list

It might happen that your Jira has files that contain custom configuration. If you want to keep this config on your upgraded Jira instance, you need to copy these custom changes to the respective files in your new Jira. 

  • If you're on the latest version of the ASTS plugin, go to  > Applications > Plan your upgrade to see the list of files in which you introduced custom changes. If you want to keep these changes in your upgraded instance, you need to copy the changes (not entire files!) to the respective files during upgrade. Have this list handy, it will save you time during the upgrade process. 

  • If you cannot pull up the Plan your upgrade page, compile the list of files you've modified. For some suggestions regarding files that get modified most frequently, see here. 

Pre-upgrade steps

Here are the steps you should complete to prepare your current environment for the upgrade. 

Testing the upgrade

Create a replica of your Jira instance in a testing environment, so you can test the upgrade.

Create a test environment

Preparing for the upgrade

Get Jira ready for the upgrade by running a health check, checking app compatibility, and creating backups.

View pre-upgrade steps


Want to have a step-by-step overview of your upcoming upgrade tasks? Great! We've laid everything out in this Trello board.

Jira Server

I'm using a stand-alone version of Jira.

Choose this one

Jira Data Center

I have a clustered version of Jira.

Choose this one

Known issues

When Jira 8.5 is used with Confluence 7.0.x then after parsing Jira's gadget feed in Confluence, gadgets re not listed on the "Select macro" page.

The error JRASERVER-70284 - Getting issue details... STATUS has been fixed in Jira 8.5.2 release. Upgrade to this Jira version to avoid getting this issue.

Jira 8.5 upgrade fails with an issue properties error

This error seems to be caused by entities that custom plugins can leave in the database. If it happens, make sure to remove the custom plugin and re-index Jira. If it persists, contact Support. To follow the issue, see DEVHELP-3134.
Upgrading from Jira 7.x to Jira 8.5 results in data base tables and columns missingThis issue has been spotted during upgrading with installer. Make sure to upgrade manually when you upgrade from Jira 7.6 or 7.13 to 8.5. Learn more...
Running Jira 8.x on Windows with AdoptOpenJDK 11.0.4_11 produces an exception. Use AdoptOpenJDK 11.0.2 as per Supported platforms.
Long filter descriptions can affect upgrading from Jira 7.x to Jira Long Term Support release 8.5Make sure that your filter descriptions do not exceed 32766 characters. Learn more
Deadlocking in Jira Service Desk when frequently updating the same issue

If you have an automated process that keeps updating the same issue many times, it might lead to deadlocks after you upgrade to Jira Service Desk 4.5. Learn more

Disabling automatic reindex leaves a pending reindexing requestWhen you disable automatic reindex and then reindex manually after the upgrade, Jira will still ask you to reindex. You can ignore this flag, enable automatic reindex (this will trigger another reindex), or modify the database to make the flag disappear. Learn more
Last modified on Jun 26, 2020

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