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the JSM Rabbit Hole: Challenges with Portals, Branding, URLs, Email Domains, and Refined.

Tony March 5, 2024

Greetings Community!

I want to share my recent journey with you, which is more of an exploration and trial-and-error discussion rather than a straightforward request for help.

About a month ago, I undertook the task of constructing a help desk for our company product. The process involved creating a Jira Service Management (JSM) project and configuring various elements such as Issue types, Workflows, Screens, Fields, and more, along with their respective schemes. I also connected everything, set up the customer portal, customized it with our branded URLs (subdomain1.subdomain2), and configured a custom email for client notifications. While each of these aspects could be discussed individually with its own set of tricks and tips, that's not the focus here.

Initially, everything went smoothly, and I presented the help desk to the management, who were pleased. In fact, they were so pleased that I was tasked with creating an individual help desk for our white label partners, all under the umbrella of a single instance. I wondered if I was the only one facing this challenge.

Enter Refined – a fantastic tool that seemed perfect for completing this task. I cloned the first JSM project, made a few edits to align with the desired outcome, and everything seemed fine at first glance. We even had prettier Help Desks now, earning me more bonus points, or so I thought...

The first setback, which unfortunately has no workaround, is the landing portal for clients. To clarify, the Jira Crowd (I think that's what it's called) allows logging in with email and password to a help desk, but it always redirects to the Atlassian landing portal of the instance ending with "/portals." This means that the beautifully branded Refined Sites with their easy-to-remember URLs like "" have to pass through a single, not-so-beautiful, and impossible-to-configure Atlassian portal. There's no option to redirect after registration, leaving clients at "/portals" (which is not ideal for white labeling). The potential workaround, JSDCLOUD-9174, was forgotten five years ago.

Now, faced with this issue, I considered making the Help Desks "public" and configuring them not to require registration for clients to view Confluence articles and submit JSM requests. However, two questions arose: How to identify the client, and how to prevent spam requests?

In a bit of frustration, I considered starting from scratch and creating individual instances for the separate Help Desks that needed to be made. But can we migrate the configurations of the projects?

The answer is both yes and no. Cloud-to-Cloud migration would do the job but at the cost of quadrupling the current billing, transferring all organizational users with their groups and all products – Software, SM, WM, Confluence...

DeepClone proved limited, only moving issues to the other instance, not providing the comprehensive solution needed.

Project Configurator for Jira is a no-go since it doesn't support Cloud.

It would be great to find a solution that doesn't require starting from scratch. Rebuilding everything would mean setting up the JSM configuration, the Refined configuration, domain verifications, emails – all of which are time-consuming and quite complex having to navigate 4 instances.

Any thoughts or ideas on this dilemma?



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