This is a topic that seems to be poorly documented – exporting and importing projects between JIRA instances. There is an entire system backup, but the documentation makes it clear that restoring individual projects from the system backup is not fully supported. The best method our team has come up with is to use the CSV export capability of the JIRA issue search functionality – this export is designed to match the CSV “external system” import for JIRA projects. Both issues and associated comments can be exported in this way. The default field names for both the export and import are likely to be acceptable for most users. The project must be created on target JIRA prior to issue and comment import. If you have trouble importing, you may need to configure the new target project to accommodate any special issue fields or project settings required for your issues and comments to import. Here is some related Atlassian documentation:
- JIRA: Working with search results – Exporting your search results (Search – Export – CSV)
- JIRA: Importing data from CSV – Running the CSV file import wizard (External System Import: CSV, JIRA Administrators)
- If the user importing issues is not granted global JIRA Administrators privilege, a project-level admin with Bulk Change permission can use the “Import Issues from CSV” feature documented @ JIRA: Creating issues using the CSV importer – Running the CSV file import wizard (Issues: Import Issues from CSV)
Good luck importing and exporting project issues with JIRA. It’s strange to me that native JIRA issue import/export or project import/export are not supported by Atlassian other than this generic CSV capability. It may be a little rough, but the process works reliably and is similar for importing or exporting data from other issue tracking systems missing from the external system import list in JIRA.