My previous post provided a sneak peak of a new installer for Linux. This post will cover the new upgrade capability for the installer.

In the past, upgrading Jira took a bit of time, including a number of manual steps when config files were customised. For Jira 4.4, we’ve designed a new upgrade wizard from the ground up that takes care of it all! Building on the same Install4J installer technology mentioned previously, we have overhauled the upgrade process to automate practically all the manual steps that previously needed to be performed. Read on for all the great features and details.

New Upgrade Features

Here is a summary of the new upgrade features:

    • Guided installer: The guided installer has been enhanced to support an upgrade capability. You now have the option to install a new instance or upgrade the existing instance.


  • Upgrade friendly settings: In order to assist in migrating settings during an upgrade we re-architected both Jira and Confluence to move key files and configurations into the home directory and database respectively.
  • Pre-flight checks: Before the actual upgrade takes place we now provide a link to the Universal Plugin Manager (UPM) so you can confirm if your plugins are compatible with the release to be installed and we optionally back up your home directory. We also prompt you to ensure you have a backup of your database.
  • Settings migration: We optionally back your home directory and automatically migrate the most commonly modified configurations entries from
    • server.xml: control and running port
    • setenv.bat/sh: JVM and application memory settings
    • entityengine.xml: database configuration
    • all configured options
  • Customisation report: We wanted to cover 90% or more of settings migration scenarios, and customisations often go beyond the file configurations in the previous point. To cover the remaining scenarios we provide a report containing all added, modified, or removed from the current installation – a common example are velocity templates modifications. This report enables admins to have visibility into the extent of changes that will need to be made post upgrade.


  • In-place database migration: You no longer have to create a new database and import your data from your old instance. After the instance is upgraded and started, Jira or Confluence will upgrade your database automatically including tables, schemas and indexes.

The installer will ask a few standard questions and perform pre-upgrade checks (such as back ups and plugins). The customisation report will determine any additional file modifications beyond what is done automatically. This gives you the opportunity to abort the upgrade in case you need more time to prepare. Then the installer will upgrade the instance and restart with the new release. During the restart an in-place database will occur and subsequently direct you to the login screen. There, you can update any plugins you didn’t perform prior to the upgrade and completing any extra customisations detailed in the report.

When combined with the new Linux and Windows installer package these upgrade improvements provide an end to end solution for customers to quickly take advantage of new releases with minimal downtime.


At Summit 2011 we announced that these new installers will be available in Jira 4.4 and Confluence 4.0. The Jira 4.4 Early Access Preview (EAP) that includes these features is available now in our downloads page and will also be the case for Confluence in the upcoming few weeks. We’d love you to test them out in a non-production environment. Please read the release notes to learn more what install and upgrade features are being incrementally included.


We are really excited about the improvements we are making to Jira and Confluence and know these changes will save you loads of time! Most importantly, we encourage your feedback as we continue to improve how you administer our products.

Jira 4.4 Sneak Peek – the new Upgrader