Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Sign up Log in

Next challenges

Recent achievements

  • Global
  • Personal


  • Give kudos
  • Received
  • Given


  • Global

Trophy case

Kudos (beta program)

Kudos logo

You've been invited into the Kudos (beta program) private group. Chat with others in the program, or give feedback to Atlassian.

View group

It's not the same without you

Join the community to find out what other Atlassian users are discussing, debating and creating.

Atlassian Community Hero Image Collage

Re-using keys Edited

I have project ABC with key ABC.  My users would like to retain the info in this project, but have a new project by that name and with that key.  I renamed the project to ABC-OLD and renamed the key ABCOLD on the details page.  This worked fine; the key shows as ABCOLD-1 and would allow viewing the original data.

However, if I try to create a new ABC project, it tells me key ABC is currently in use by project ABC-OLD.  I viewed the project and could query by key ABCOLD.  However, if I queried with ABC-1 (without OLD), it showed me ABCOLD-1.

The original project has types and schemes that are no longer valid, but the user is clear they want to keep the project name and key id for the new project, but built with different issue types and workflows.  Since renaming the key didn't eliminate the original link, are there any other options?  I thought about creating the "OLD" project and then having a bulk move of data, but it was a complicated project that would be ugly to re-create.  

I'm open to any ideas!  Thanks in advance.


4 answers

2 accepted

0 votes
Answer accepted

This is by design, so that users can still query using the old key.  You can't resuse the project key after renaming.  See here:


Notes for change management

While editing the project key is a major change, in most cases, your Jira project will work as you'd expect with a new key. There are a few cases that you should be aware of, which are listed below. We recommend reviewing these and advising your users accordingly.

  • The old project key can be used in JQL queries — Users won't have to update issue filters that reference the old project key.
  • If you use Confluence with Jira, the Jira issue macros in Confluence will continue to work. Please note, if you don't see the change straight away, allow some time for the cache to refresh.
  • You won't be able to create a new project with the old project key. However, you can change the renamed project back to the old project key. If you delete the project, all associated keys will be freed and you'll be able to re-use them.

I deleted the old project and Jira still reports that the old project key is being used.

0 votes
Answer accepted

This happens so that the old key remains searchable when people have external issue links.  In your example, the link to http://yourjira/browse/ABC-1 and ABCOLD-1 will both take them to the underlying issue.

If you have database access, and a steady hand (I never recommend messing with a Jira database, but this one is a little safer than most) you can destroy this and enable re-use of keys.  If you do this, the link to ABC-1 will stop working, so you need to think carefully before destroying it (the key change will persist in the history, but you won't be able to search any more, and you may get some "interesting" questions from people about why their links now point at utter rubbish)

Stop Jira.  Remove the old project from the project table, and remove all the lines in moved_issue_key that reference it as well.  Restart Jira and re-index it immediately.  Also, you will need to re-index Confluence if you have that linked to Jira, and you may have problems with Bitbucket, FeCru and Bamboo if you linked them as well (these, you may have to live with, unless you want to start editing commit messages and build history)

Thank you both for the fast response.  It makes sense.

It looks like I'll be telling the customer they have to have key ABCD since I don't want to manually manipulate the database.

I have renamed some keys for empty projects and want to remove the old keys for reuse

Do you know which tables they are stored in? Looks like its the original key field in the project table

I don't need to preserve any old issue lookups - at least none I'm not prepared to deal with.

Can I clear moved_issue_keys table and original_key column and reindex?

There are also entries in project_key for old and new. 


I'm thinking these are the keys I have changed

select pkey, originalkey from public.project where pkey != originalkey

These are the keys to remove

delete from project_keys where project_key in (select originalkey from public.project where pkey != originalkey);

 update project set original_key = pkey;

delete from FROM public.moved_issue_key;

Yes, those are the two tables I was thinking of (15 years and I still haven't quite memorised the database table names)

Suggest an answer

Log in or Sign up to answer
Community showcase
Published in Jira Software

How to create Jira issus from Excel file?

When to use CSV importer When managing your processes in Jira, there are many occasions where you need to create a lot of tasks. Creating them one by one will cost you a lot of time and effort and i...

5,502 views 22 39
Read article

Community Events

Connect with like-minded Atlassian users at free events near you!

Find an event

Connect with like-minded Atlassian users at free events near you!

Unfortunately there are no Community Events near you at the moment.

Host an event

You're one step closer to meeting fellow Atlassian users at your local event. Learn more about Community Events

Events near you