Maintaining Jira Customizations

We are using Jira 6.0 and we have done some customizations in the installed instance according to our needs, which have resulted in updates in some of the files in installation directory like .vm files etc.
In order to improve the maintenance, we are looking forward to maintain a history of changes in source control. We are using Perforce as our source code repository.
We need your advice in this. We want to know, how should proceed? 
Should we add the complete (actual) installation directory in Perforce as a workspace and maintain the changes from there? OR 
Should we add in Perforce only those original files and there updates which are changed?


2 answers

0 votes
Joseph Pitt Community Champion Feb 13, 2015

I'm not familiar with Perforce. However, you need to keep track of what you changed in such a way that if Atlassian changes their directory structure you'll still be able to figure out where your changes will need to go. There is always the possibility you'll need to rewrite your modification.

Hey Zeeshan,

as Joe already stated, it can always happen that Atlassian changes not only the directory structure and the location of files but also the content and structure of it.
While I agree that it's very valuable to track and document the customizations, I think it should be done in a flexible way if it is supposed to be future-proof.
The downside of the Perforce way could be (depending on the approach) that it's hard to apply the customizations to files that changed significantly (e.g. Atlassian adding some more content to a .vm-file which didn't exist in the version you have in your Perforce).
Depending on how many changes you have and especially for UI changes it would make sense to document them extensively in Confluence or any other Knowledge base, giving as much information necessary for a human being to re-apply them after an update with least effort. This can include things like filename, path, code-snipped, position in the source-code.

Despite this, there are of course files that are usually safe to be stored in a VCS like JIRA's config folder with server.xml.

I hope I could provide some valuable input for your mission.


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