Can I combine JIRA Software and Service Desk in a single JIRA instance?

This question is in reference to Atlassian Documentation: JIRA applications overview

JIRA Software + Portfolio is superb. Installed those locally ("server" mode), excellent. But do I need one more (separate) server to install JIRA Service Desk 3.0 ? If yes, how to orchestrate those two to work together?

Thanks in advance! WBR, Andrii

3 answers

1 accepted

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What I did and it works (though it took some effort to discover the correct way).

  1. First, you install your PostgreSQL on the first virtual machine and configure it according to the installation manual, create JIRA DBA user, etc.
  2. Then you install JIRA Software Server with the big complete installer, on the second virtual machine, connect JIRA instance to the database following the installation manual, etc. Make sure it all worked Ok.
  3. Then go to the JIRA ServiceDesk page where updates are provided. There is an  inconspicuous, imperceptible link in the bottom of the page: "Already have JIRA Software or JIRA Core?". Go there and get an application update in .obr file which is much smaller size than the complete installer. Download it to your workstation local disk.
  4. Then go to your JIRA admin page, to the "Applications" tab. At the right top part of the page there is a link "Upload an application". Upload your .obr file there.
  5. Voila! Everything works for you.

Whether to start with JIRA Software Server complete installer and add ServiceDesk .obr later, or start with JIRA ServiceDesk installer and get an JIRA Software .obr application update later - is a matter of your choice.

Finally, you have 3 applications inside your application admin tab in JIRA:

  • JIRA Core
  • JIRA Software
  • JIRA ServiceDesk

all three running in the single instance, with a single PostgreSQL backend instance. That's what was needed, after all.

What's worth a notice, JIRA Software and JIRA Servicedesk are "applications" on top of JIRA Core, and they get their minor versions updated just via a click in application admin page (I guess they just go download and install their new .obr files automagically, I upgraded Software from 7.0.0 to 7.0.2 this way). JIRA Core itself does not. To upgrade JIRA Core from 7.0.0 to 7.0.2 there is no "Already have" option, I downloaded a full-sized installer of JIRA Core 7.0.2, made a complete full backup of the whole complex of VMs, then launched the 7.0.2 installer and told it to "upgrade an existing instance". It worked fine, neither applications (JIRA Software and JIRA Servicedesk) nor plugins (JIRA Portfolio et.al.) were lost or broken.

Thank you!!   This is absolutely ridiculous. How much bloat do we need to have to run the stack, jesus. Come on Atlassian! Get with the program.

I like the separation layer they've provided, but the documentation is now totally under par for this.

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Service Desk is an Application, as is Software.  They both run inside JIRA Core, but are licenced separately. The best way to install both is to install JIRA Software OR JIRA Service Desk, and then add the other application.  As you have Software already, just go to the application management and install Service Desk and you're done!

Portfolio is an add-on and has to be licenced at the highest level you have for one of the other three.

If I understand that correctly, our existing JIRA Software instance can stay as it is. We then setup a JIRA Service Desk version and link it via the Application Links, like Confluence? But don't we have to pay the full price for JIRA Software + JIRA Servide Desk then, even if we use the same JIRA instance? Another question: We are using a 250-user license for JIRA, but will only need a 10 agents-license for Service Desk. Is that possible?

Yes, you *add* Service Desk to your existing JIRA, but you don't need to set up any new application links unless you're trying to link to new systems. As I said, the applications are licenced separately. You will just need to add 10 Agent licences to the system. (Let's say you have 250 Software user licences now, with 249 active users, and you add those 10 Agents and add 9 new people to cover your service desk - you'll have 258 active users in the one system. Plus one spare seat of each type. But your agents won't be able to use Agile stuff)

Hello, we are currently using JIRA as both our Service Desk and our Development tool (with the Software version), but are facing eventually to install a few JIRA Service Desk licenses in order to externalize our clients from the current instance. More specifically, we want them to have less information about open issues (such as the status) to adapt more precisely the JIRA workflow to our internal one.

We would like to give Service Desk licenses to those collaborators who are going to manage more specifically the Support part, but we also need them to have access to boards and Agile features used by the Dev team.

Is it possible for a single user to have both Service Desk and Software licenses? Could he have the features of these two apps at the same time?

In the example right above, it would mean having 249 people for 250 Software user licenses, 10 Agent user licenses, but at the end still 249 people from whom 9 or 10 with both abilities.

Broadly, the answer is yes.

It's easier to think of it as three applications though, and imagine you have four groups of people.

GroupLicenceCan use
CustomersFreeVery limited view - customer portal and their own basic request information
JIRA Core usersCheapJIRA Core functions - projects, issues, reports, business boards
Can be added to JSD issues as associated users
JIRA Software UsersA little less cheapJIRA Core + Scrum and Kanban boards and associated reporting.
Can be added to JSD issues as associated users
JIRA Service Desk AgentsExpensive compared with the aboveJIRA Core + JIRA Service Desk project handling

So, imagine the following users:

  • Alice the dabbler - she's an Agent, and a Developer, so she has access to everything - she consumes an Agent licence and a Software licence, but doesn't need a Core licence because she gets that from both the others
  • Bob the developer - he needs a Software licence
  • Chuck the helpdesk minion - he needs an Agent licence
  • Davina the project manager - she only needs a Core licence as she doesn't do development or get involved with helpdesk stuff.
  • Eddie the customer - has no IT functions, but does need to ask questions and for help - she's really a customer - no licence needed at all!  But, she can only see her requests, and it's a simple flow of comment and updates, she does not see any of the JIRA stuff happening behind the scenes.

    So, yes, your assumption is correct, you'd want 250 Software users, and 10 Agents.  Your agents sound like they'd fall into Alice's role and hence consume two licences though.



Thanks for your quick and complete answer, that was exactly what I was looking for. 

Now that that's settled, I wonder if all these users - our current developers with Software license, and the hypothetic agent-developers with Software & DS licenses - could work on projects that cover both services.

Within a given project, we need the client-requested issue to follow a path through Support to be analized, and then through Development to be processed. Any actor of this process, either a Developer or an Agent, should be able to transition the issue to its next status. Agents would need to move the issue to Development-related statuses if everything's ready to start working on it, and Developers should be able to move them back to Support-related statuses if they need to.

Would this be possible without further trouble (duplicated issues, separate workflows ...)?

I couldn't find a precise answer in this article about who could do what.

Yes, your dual-users will be able to do everything.  At the very least though, they all have access to Core, so even if an Agent doesn't have Software, they'll still be able to see the core issue and work on it etc.  Just won't have the boards.

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Service Desk is technically an Add-On. You treat it like how you treat other Add-Ons.

Nope, not since JIRA 7.  Service Desk is an application, not an add-on.  That fundamentally changes the licence model amongst other things.

Jack Brickey Community Champion Aug 30, 2016

@Nic Brough [Adaptavist], I'm using JIRA Software cloud. I'm not seeing JSD under the Application screen. What am i missing? Maybe this is for server only?

Jack Brickey Community Champion Aug 30, 2016

Nevermind....i found it under "Discover new application" screen. smile

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