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Configure issue linking

As a Jira administrator, you can activate issue linking to let your team create links between relevant issues across all Jira applications on your site. Note that all users must have the Link Issues permission before they can link issues.

We don't recommend editing or deleting clone link types, as they are used to automatically link cloned issues.  

  1. Navigate to the Jira admin panel using the  icon in the upper right and select Issues.

  2. In the left hand sidebar, select Issue linking under Issue features

  3. Make sure that Issue linking is set to ON. If it's not, select Activate to enable it.

  4. Once activated, you can edit the NameOutward description, and Inward description of an existing issue link by selecting Edit from the right column. Use Update to save your changes.

    1. To add a new link, define the name of your new issue link and the descriptions using the fields under the Add New Link Type header. Use Add to save it. 

When you delete a link type, you'll have the option of changing the link (for example, from "Relates" to "Duplicates") or removing all related links.

Jira issue link types have the following properties:

  • Name: The title for the link type

  • Outward description: The description of how an issue affects other issues

  • Inward description: The description of how an issue is affected by other issues

For example, a link type could have the following properties:

  • Name: Problem/Incident

  • Outward description: causes

  • Inward description: is caused by

When searching issueLinkType, Jira searches all three properties. This can mean you're unable to isolate issues with a specific inward or outward description if the link type's name and either of the descriptions are the same. This is the case for the default "Blocks" link type, where the name and outward description are "blocks".

If you need to be able to search specifically for issues with an outward description of "blocks", for example, you would need to change the name of the link type to something else. Be aware, this may change the issues returned for existing JQL queries.

To search specifically for issues with the "blocks" outward description:

  1. Find the Blocks link type and choose Edit

  2. Change the name to something else (Blocking, for example)

  3. Choose Update

Deactivate issue linking

  1. Select > Issues.

  2. Click Issue Linking.

  3. A status message indicates whether issue linking is enabled. If issue linking is enabled, click the Deactivate button. The Issue Linking page reloads, stating that linking is disabled.

Linking closed issues

Closed issues won’t appear in the search drop down. Use the exact issue key to link a closed issue to an open issue.

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