Change the default session timeout to avoid user logout in Jira server

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The information on this page relates to customizations in JIRA Applications. Consequently, Atlassian Support cannot guarantee the provision of any support for the steps described on this page as customizations are not covered under Atlassian Support Offerings. Please be aware that this material is provided for your information only and that you use it at your own risk.

Also, please be aware that customizations done by directly modifying files are not included in the upgrade process. These modifications will need to be reapplied manually on the upgraded instance.

Platform Notice: Server and Data Center Only - This article only applies to Atlassian products on the server and data center platforms.


The default timeout for web sessions from JIRA 4.3 onwards is 300 minutes (5 hours). This page discusses how you could modify it.


If you are deploying JIRA as a closed .war file you will need to unzip the .war, edit the file, and re-create the .war with exactly the same structure as it originally had.

The default timeout session of 300 minutes is set in WEB-INF/web.xml. This value overrides all other configurations. However, to change the default session timeout it's good practice to edit the value in the two following files files: 

  • $JIRA_INSTALL/atlassian-jira/WEB-INF/web.xml  - used to configure the individual deployed application (Jira)
  • $JIRA_INSTALL/conf/web.xml - provided by Tomcat to configure globally for the entire web server

<web-app ...>

The change has to be redone after an upgrade of Jira.

There is a known issue that the set timeout might be changed by the Atlassian Bot Session Killer, as described here. If that happens, you need to disable the bot first, and change the session again. Learn more

Anything 0 or below sets it to an unlimited timeout

JIRA needs to be restarted after the above changes to have effect the new session timeout.

If you are running multiple Atlassian applications on the same server, JIRA users may still get consistently logged out. In this case, you may need to change the context path according to the Logging into Another Atlassian Application Logs Me Out of Confluence.


 Please take into account these tickets:

DescriptionThe default timeout for web sessions from JIRA 4.3 onwards is 300 minutes (5 hours). This page discusses how you could modify it.
ProductJira, Confluence
Last modified on Sep 4, 2020

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