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JIRA - Migrating from Server to Cloud

BryanT Community Leader Oct 02, 2017

I am moving from our current situation of JIRA server to JIRA Cloud. Is there an easy way to migrate the data over or is this all a manual effort?

4 answers

2 accepted

1 vote
Answer accepted

Hi there,

Maren here from Atlassian. 

I wanted to point everyone to our documentation, which answers the questions here as well as gives guidance on how to be successful with your Jira Server to cloud migration. 

For more info to help you decide if moving from server to cloud is a good option for you, check out our Atlassian Cloud Migration Center. For Jira-specific advice, check out:

To address some of the specific questions raised here:

  • Upgrading: Whether or not you need to upgrade will depend on your current server version. Our latest upgrade guidance can be found in our documentation.
  • Documentation: You can find the documentation on how to migrate here. You should not have any issues migrating avatars, attachments, or logos.
  • App migration: App data is not typically included in the backup when migrating from Jira Server to Jira Cloud. Some apps do have the capability to export and import their data but you'll need to check with the app developers or their documentation to confirm if this is possible. As noted, Zephyr is available as both a cloud and server app, however, you will need to work with the app developer to plan your migration strategy or understand what options are available. They may be able to assist you with your app migration or have suggestions for how to approach it. 

Hope this helps, and please don't hesitate to reach out with questions!

0 votes
Answer accepted
BryanT Community Leader Oct 02, 2017

Although importing from the JIRA Server backup file works fine, there is no process to import Avatars, Logos, and Attachments.  This essentially makes moving to the cloud almost impossible as the task to manually attach all of the files to issues would take forever given the amount of issues and attachments a company would have after several years of experience using Server.

The linked document is also outdated as the Cloud version of JIRA does not contain a link for "JIRA Import".  The options under Import and Export header are: Backup manager, External System Import, and Restore system.

I used Restore system which only allows importing a JIRA Server backup file created using JIRA Server Backup manager.

Any suggestions on how to get the at least the attachments imported into JIRA Cloud from my JIRA Server and linked back up to the issues correctly?  Avatars and Logos I can live without.

I'm trying a modify JIRA Server backup zip file with the following structure.


We'll see if this works.

Any luck in getting this modification to work?

Hi Tony.  Yes, I was able to successfully get this to work.  The mistake I was running into was inside the root of the zip file, a folder named archive was present.  The tree above is all that needs to be in the zip file so you'll need to make sure the contents is setup correctly.  Of course, this was a while ago and Atlassian frequently changes things on the fly so it may be different.

The biggest challenge I had wasn't restoring JIRA data but restoring  Add On data.  We use Zehpyr and although it migrates the test cases, it does not migrate any of the test steps.  I had to build my own tools to do the migration.  I used NetSuite as my processing engine and stood up a Node.js server on Heroku as my authentication server with a single API which generated the JWT for each test step URL, of which, we had tens of thousands.  Without doing this, Zephyr became useless and this whole process took me about 4 weeks due to the fact none of the JWT generation processes Zephyr had documented worked.  I was able to get on with one of their engineers and he helped me create the code I needed in javascript to run on my node server.  I thought about packaging it and selling it but wasn't sure if there was any interest for something like that.  I would have to move all the code I had running in NetSuite off to another node server or something or even the same node server.

The way this processed worked, is to run a Map/Reduce process out of NetSuite which connected to the Jira Server, grabbed all of the test steps to be migrated and built a data collection.  I then mapped all of the steps to the test case and then using the reduce phase, I was able to generate a URL for the JIRA Cloud test step and build the authentication with a quick call to my node server then execute the Zephyr API using the url and JWT generated, rinse and repeat for every test case with the collection of steps.

Hi Kevin, thanks for the reply, that sounds like a lot of work but happy to hear it worked well for you.


How old was your JIRA Server version?  We are on 6.1.3 and thinking of migrating over to the hosted cloud solution.  Would we need to upgrade our version prior? 

Atlassian advises you to upgrade to the latest version of Server prior to your migration.  You'll have failures in your migration if you are not on the latest version of Jira Server.  If you have both Confluence and Jira, upgrade Jira first then Confluence second.  If you go the opposite route, you'll deal with a ton of user and group related issues.

Hi, BryanT!

I know it’s a late response, but I hope my suggestion will be of great help to everyone looking for an easy way to migrate from Server to Cloud. My answer will be a third-party solution like the Help Desk Migration service. Our tool is highly automated which allows you to transfer data between instances with little to no effort on your side. And, if you thought things couldn't get better than that - we offer a free trial for all our customers. This way, you can test out the tool and see how it works in your particular case. 

Feel free to check it out on Atlassian Marketplace:

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