Cannot Import Epic Link from CSV due to Incorrect Format

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The following CSV content can be used to import a Story and link it to an existing Epic in JIRA:

Issue KeySummaryIssue TypeEpic NameEpic Link
LINK-1Epic for StoryEpicMy Epic

Story in EpicStory
My Epic

In this case, LINK-1 is an existing Epic in JIRA and a new Story will be imported by CSV and linked to the Epic using the Epic Name-Epic Link relationship.

However, upon the import, the Story is created but can't be linked to the Epic. The following message is seen in the import log:

2016-05-25 19:17:57,798 INFO - Importing issue: [externalId='autoid-8604204863734121976', summary='Story in Epic']
2016-05-25 19:17:57,822 WARN - Cannot add value [ [My Epic] ] to CustomField Epic Link in Issue with summary 'Story in Epic'. Probably value was in incorrect format


The Story can be linked manually to the Epic in JIRA after being imported, by editing the issue and searching for My Epic in the Epic Link field. When doing so, however, there are 2 suggested Epics with the same Epic Name:


There are two potential causes of this issue:

  • When importing from CSV, the Epics need to be imported before the issues with the epic links. If they are imported in the same CSV then the issues will try to associate Epic Links to Epics which have not been created yet. 
  • There are 2 Epics with the same Epic Name which makes the CSV Importer confused as to which Epic the Story should be linked to.


When importing issues from CSV, first import the Epics. Lastly, you can then import the Issues with the Epic Links and they will now correctly associate. 

In addition, there shouldn't be multiple Epics with the same Epic Name. Each Epic should have a unique name for its own identity.

Renaming the Epic to which the imported Story shouldn't be linked will have the Story imported and linked to the specified Epic correctly.

Last modified on Sep 17, 2019

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