how do I edit a workflow that is in use by many open issues?

I would like to add transitions and steps to an existing workflow that is in use by many ope issues. I know that i have to make the workflow inactive in order to make these changes. what happens to my issues if I remove the workflow? do they default to the general Jira workflow? then once my additions are made and I apply my custom workflow does everything go back to normal? or will i lose data switching between workflows that do not have similar fields?

Should i clone the current workflow and edit its copy? is there a better way to do this?

Thanks in advance,


3 answers

1 accepted

0 vote
Pedro Cora Atlassian Team Jul 28, 2014

Hi Jose,

I'd recommend that you copy the workflow, make the changes in the copy that will be inactive and then, update the workflow scheme associated with your project to get the workflow that you've copied and that contains the changes that you need.


Jose, unless you're on a very old version of JIRA, you can simply "Edit" the workflow (which creates a draft workflow), and then when you've finished all of your edits, "Publish" the draft. JIRA will replace the previous version of the workflow with the updated version.

Note that this assumes you are only adding transitions or steps. If you are removing transitions or steps, you should consider how this will impact existing issues. For example, if you are removing a step, make sure to first bulk-transition all of the issues currently in that step (i.e. with the Status value mapped to the step).

Thank you all for the instructions. I must be on an old version of JIRA because I am not able to add a transition to a workflow that is in use. I did however made a copy of the existing and modified that and later transfered. it worked like a charm.

Thanks again!

Suggest an answer

Log in or Sign up to answer
How to earn badges on the Atlassian Community

How to earn badges on the Atlassian Community

Badges are a great way to show off community activity, whether you’re a newbie or a Champion.

Learn more
Community showcase
Published Thursday in Jira

5 ways you can make the most of Jira Software and Bitbucket Cloud

As part of the Bitbucket product team I'm always interested in better understanding what kind of impact the use of our tools have on the way you work. In a recent study we conducted of software devel...

82 views 0 5
Read article

Atlassian User Groups

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

Find a group

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

Find my local user group

Unfortunately there are no AUG chapters near you at the moment.

Start an AUG

You're one step closer to meeting fellow Atlassian users at your local meet up. Learn more about AUGs

Groups near you