You can import issues into your Jira Cloud site. We recommend using this process to import data from third-party tools. 

Import overwrites existing data

This import process overwrites existing data and configuration (including cross-application settings) in your Jira cloud site. This impacts existing issues and attachments, and look and feel configuration.

You can choose to also overwrite all users or to merge users from the import file into the existing cloud userbase. Be aware that this can cause permission escalation. Find out more about migrating Jira from server to cloud.

The exception is portal-only customer accounts in Jira Service Management. If the portal-only customer data is different in the import and the destination site, then we use the destination version.

How to generate a backup file

From another Jira Cloud site

Follow the steps on Exporting issues to generate a backup file. Then read the import steps below. 

From a Jira Server instance

Follow the steps on Backing up data to generate a backup. 

Supported versions

  • If your Jira Server version is 7.6.0 or higher, you don't need to upgrade before migrating.

  • If your Jira Server version is between 7.0.0 and 7.6.0 (released November 2017) we recommend upgrading to 7.6.0 or higher before migrating. Migrating versions between 7.0.0 and 7.6.0 may work, but these versions are no longer guaranteed to work without requiring an upgrade.

  • If your Jira Server version is below 7.0.0 (released October 2015) you need to upgrade to 7.6.0 or higher before migrating. To help you migrate, check out Upgrading Jira applications.


From other tools 

Check out Migrating from other tools to find out more about importing data from CSV and JSON. 

How to import a backup file

Importing entities.xml and activeobjects.xml will overwrite the database in your Jira Cloud site. Importing the attachments, avatars, or logos files will overwrite any existing attachments, avatars, or logos in your Jira Cloud site, respectively.

Before you import, unzip the backup file and make sure it has a file structure similar to:

JIRA-backup-20161021
├── activeobjects.xml
├── entities.xml
├── data
│   ├── attachments
│   └── avatars
└── logos

We recommend splitting your cloud backup file into two separate files: a data file containing your activeobjects.xml and entities.xml, and a separate one for your attachments and other media. This can help avoid timeout errors and reduce the risk of issues when importing.

If you've unzipped and edited an export from a Jira Cloud site, and are re-zipping it on a Mac, the process may add hidden files that will cause the import to fail. To ensure there are no hidden files, run these commands in Terminal (where filename.zip is the name of the file you're going to import):

zip -d filename.zip __MACOSX/\*

zip -d filename.zip \*/.DS_Store

To import your backup file:

  1. Choose > System
  2. Under IMPORT AND EXPORT, click Restore system and follow the steps.

After the import

Granting application access to new users

The import process does not honor the default application access settings and does not give access to any applications to new users. You must grant application access to these users for them to be able to log in.

For information on how to assign application access, see Update product access settings.

Setting permissions

This process imports global permission settings such as Browse users and groups; however, imports from Jira Server to Jira Cloud will not contain the Jira System Administrators global permission (which doesn't exist in Jira Cloud) and will not contain any changes made to the Administer Jira global permission. 

Application permissions are managed in each application individually. You can configure the Administer Jira global permission after the import by adding groups and users as needed. If your site has other cloud applications, e.g. Confluence or Bamboo, refer to Update product access settings for information on how to configure permissions.