do you need Jira to have confluence

I am wondering if it is possible to use confluence without having Jira. Or do you need to use both products

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You can definitely use Confluence without JIRA. I work for a Fortune 500 company and used Confluence - it's now spread through our entire org (e.g. Marketing, HR, IT) - a full 5 years before we got JIRA.  This may be atypical, but is certainly a viable path!

I'm not sure it's particularly atypical. JIRA is older, and had longer to get into the marketplace, and it's quite common to see one of them arrive closely followed by the other. But there's plenty of Confluence without JIRA out there. (Less so now, because a lot of Confluence users have gone "close integration with JIRA, which is better than our current spreadsheets/issuetracker/horridcorporatemanagementhelldesk"solution", lets go for that)

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Confluence can be used alone.

You can also connect them later, in case your needs change. The link is quite flexible.

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