The Tip of the Month, brought to you by Atlassian University, is a monthly series to help master Atlassian tools. Products are more fun to use when you know all the tricks.

JQL stands for Jira Query Language. If you’ve been following the Jira blog, you’ve seen our recent 4-part tutorial all about JQL for those with no experience writing database queries. JQL really is for everyone using Jira: developers, testers, project managers, as well as business users.

This month’s tip is a way to get your feet wet exploring JQL by examining queries and sub-sections of queries that are already built.

Find a chart!

Is there a list or chart that you refer to often? Go to your dashboard and look for an interesting chart. If you don’t have any interesting charts on your dashboard, the best way to find one is to click “Dashboards > Manage Dashboards” then click the “Popular” tab. That will list all the dashboards in your Jira instance in order of the number of users who have set each one as one of their favorites.

To see the query behind it and a list of the issues included, you can click the “Total Issues” link at the bottom of any chart. If you want to see just a slice of the data, click one of the portions of the chart, like the orange block of a pie chart, or a single column in a bar graph.

Make sure you’re viewing the search in Advanced Mode – you should see the query at the top. Here’s the query that I found behind the orange portion of my pie chart.


project = PWC AND issuetype = Bug AND fixVersion in ("2.1")
  AND status != Done AND priority = Minor


Starting with a visual representation of a query is a great way to understand the fields and operators, functions, scope, and any sorting in JQL. Use the queries from your own dashboard and follow along with parts 1 through 4 and you’ll be a JQL master in no time!

If you found this helpful, please visit Atlassian University – interactive tutorials and videos with tons of tips just like this one.

Jira tip of the month: Look at the JQL behind port...