Upgrade task list

Ready to go? This page will take you through the process of upgrading to JIRA Software and getting the latest JIRA features for your team. If you don't use JIRA to manage software projects, don't worry; this page will also help you configure your upgraded instance to support your non-software projects too.

Before you upgrade, please make sure you've read the information about the various changes you can expect to see:

  • product changes
  • admin changes
  • licensing changes
  • user management changes

1. Follow your usual testing procedure

If you've upgraded JIRA before, you can use your normal pre-upgrade testing procedures. Otherwise, you can check our upgrade guides for tips on testing before rolling out the updates to production.

2. Install JIRA Software

We've improved the installation process with this release, so it's easier and quicker than ever to update your application. To upgrade to the latest JIRA, you'll use the JIRA Software installer. Even though this application has a new name and a different installer, there's nothing to fear mate! It will recognize your existing JIRA instance, update it to be JIRA Software, all while leaving your existing data intact and ready to use in JIRA Software.

When the installer runs, it will import your existing license, whether it's a JIRA license or a new JIRA Software license. You must be in a valid maintenance period to upgrade to JIRA Software. If your account is out of maintenance, go to my.atlassian.com and renew your maintenance before starting the upgrade process.

  1. Go to the download center and download the installer for JIRA Software.
  2. Once the installer has downloaded, open and run the installer.
  3. Follow the prompts to complete the installation.

3. Review your applications and licenses

Go to > Applications > Versions & licenses. You'll see new JIRA applications licensed for your site and a summary of the license status for each application.

You'll notice that while JIRA Core is listed on the Versions & licenses page, but it's not licensed yet. Don't worry, access to JIRA Core is already included for all users have access to JIRA Software. If you want to license additional users for JIRA Core only, continue reading this task list for information on getting it set up. 

4. Review the permissions and access for your groups

Go to  > Applications > Application accessYou'll see that all groups that had the JIRA Users global permission in your previous JIRA version now have access to JIRA Software. 

You might need to modify the default group settings to make future maintenance easier. During the upgrade, the installer will set any groups with the JIRA User global permission (but not the JIRA Administrator global permission) as default groups for JIRA Software. However, we recommend that you have only one default group for each application. Otherwise, every time new users are created, they'll be added to lots of groups. To change the groups set as default, simply clear the Default check box next to a group.

If you have users that don't need to have access to the features in JIRA Software (for example, a HR or finance user who simply tracks work in JIRA), you can add those users to a group and the give the group access to JIRA Core only. Before doing this, you need to license JIRA Core. Keep reading this task list for information on getting JIRA Core set up for your users.


5. Explore JIRA Software

After you update to JIRA Software, you'll have access to tons of new features for managing your projects. Read an overview of these features on the Product changes page or check out all the documentation.

6. Modify your existing projects if needed

After your upgrade, your projects will still have the same data, permissions, and history as they did in JIRA. However, depending on the types of work you track in JIRA, you might want to modify the configuration of your existing projects.
  • If you used JIRA to track software projects - You might want to start using boards and other software project features to add more power to your project tracking. You can read all about these features on the Product changes page. To get started making the most of your software projects, check out the JIRA Software documentation.
  • If you used JIRA to track non-software projects - You might want to convert your these projects to business projects. During the upgrade process, JIRA Software converts all existing JIRA projects to be software projects. If you don't want to use these types of features to track your work, you can convert software projects to business projects, which will provide a more streamlined view of the project that's friendlier to non-technical users, while still helping them track their tasks.

See the Admin changes page for information on converting projects.

7. Interested in licensing JIRA Core?  

JIRA Software provides boards, backlogs, and epics that make it incredibly powerful for managing projects. In fact, over 70% of our customers currently use these features to release their software projects.

However, you might find that some of your users don't need access to these types of features. For example, users on business teams like HR or asset management might need access to only the basic issue tracking features in JIRA. These users can work on business projects by using your existing JIRA/JIRA Software license. If your existing license for JIRA Software is fully used by software users, or if you want to use JIRA Core only, you can add a license and add users of JIRA Core.

  1. First, license JIRA Core. 
    1. Go to > Applications
    2. Open the Versions & licenses page. 
    3. Select the Download button for JIRA Core and follow the prompts. The wizard will take you through the process of purchasing a JIRA Core license.
  2. After JIRA Core is installed and licensed, give users access to JIRA Core:
    1. Go to  > Applications.
    2. Open the Application access page.
    3. Add the appropriate group(s) to the JIRA Core section; this lets all the users in these groups access the JIRA Core application. 




If you decide that you don't want to use JIRA Software and want to use only JIRA Core, you can do that. Follow the detailed instructions on this page: How to move from JIRA Software to JIRA Core.




Read details about all the changes