Request for feedback: Jira/Confluence Cloud sandbox capabilities

Hi Atlassian Developer Community,

My name is Matt and I’m a product manager on the Atlassian Cloud team.

For those of you who don’t know, we launched our cloud sandbox experience to Premium and Enterprise customers back in October 2020. This gives customers the ability to create an isolated sandbox environment that can be used for safely testing and previewing changes. By default, a sandbox is empty when it’s created.

We recently launched data copying, which will allow customers to have a sandbox that mirrors their production environment as closely as possible, with a few caveats:

  • Data copying for Jira includes all of the product data, excluding attachments and marketplace app data.
  • Data copying for Confluence includes all of the product data and attachments, excluding marketplace app data.
  • Data copying will fail if:
    • the uncompressed XML file size is over 20GB (applies to Jira only).
    • the production environment and linked sandbox are in different realms.

For more information about sandboxes, please read our official product documentation.

We would love to hear from our developer community on what other sandbox capabilities you see being beneficial. Is there anything you would like to see in the sandbox experience to make your apps more successful? Feel free to send me a direct message through the developer community or comment on this post directly.

Last but not least, there have been some questions sent to me directly from partners about sandboxes and I thought it would be good to reshare them for everyone’s benefit.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do apps get used and installed in sandboxes?

Sandbox sites work exactly the same as a production site in this regard. That means customers can install, trial, pay, and use apps the same way they would in a regular production site.

2. Are there plans to introduce free apps in sandbox?

We have plans to introduce functionality for Premium and Enterprise customers to have access to the apps they’ve already paid for in production. We are currently working out the details, including updates to our fair use policy to protect you and Atlassian from license abuse, and reporting needed so you have visibility into when your apps are being used in production vs sandbox.

3. What data is brought/not brought over as part of the data copying experience?

4. How long does a sandbox environment stay active?

A sandbox lifecycle is linked to the production site’s lifecycle, so if your production site is deleted or is no longer on a Premium plan, the corresponding sandbox will be destroyed. Users can delete sandboxes directly from admin hub ( without impacting the production environment.

5. Are there any size limits on a sandbox?

No, users can have as much data in the sandbox as required. The process to bring data from production to a sandbox through the ‘ Copy from production ’ capability will fail if the size of the production environment is greater than 20GB (applicable to Jira only).

6. How many sandbox environments can a cloud customer have?

Customers can only create one sandbox for each linked product. For example, if you have a Jira Software production environment, you can only create one Jira Software sandbox.

7. What happens to an app if a sandbox is deleted?

If a sandbox is deleted, all app data and app licenses in the sandbox are erased.

8. How are sandbox site URLs generated? Can they be reused multiple times?

We generate a randomized site URL when the sandbox is created. Each sandbox site is affixed with -sandbox-{threeRandomDigits}. For example, your sandbox site for would be

9. How does data copying work? Will it generate a new client key every time it’s used?

Our Jira data copy functionality uses the same backup & restore (i.e., site import/export) capabilities and restores the entire site, whereas Confluence relies on a newer service used by space by space import.

Because of this, a new client key would be created and associated with the data that’s copied into the sandbox site. However, given that we do not currently copy any app data over, this should not be an issue. We can also confirm that performing a data copy will not impact the client key used in the production site. Thus, the customer’s use of the app in their production site should not be disrupted.

10. How will I know when my sandbox is created and/or when my data copying is complete?

An email notification will be sent to you once these actions are complete.


I suppose that means apps in the sandbox will NOT receive an uninstall event, which leads to even more stale entries in our tenant DBs …

Would love to be proven wrong here :slight_smile:


When you talk about “app data will not be copied”, what exactly do you mean with that?

  • We store app data in our own backend (which of course won’t be copied).
  • But we also store app data in issue properties (Jira) and content properties or custom content (Confluence).
    Am I right in assuming that this data will be copied over to the sandbox instance?

One remark regarding your screenshot in FAQ#3:
In the Confluence section, you mention “Project configuration data” (which is probably a copy/paste error from the Jira section). It would be nice if you mention the correct data about spaces.

We would love to be able to charge more for our apps for Premium/Enterprise customers to cover these kinds of use cases.


Can you expand on this? Does this mean that every user on a Jira instance can have their own Sandbox?

Does this mean that if somebody starts a sandbox and then deletes restarts etc - there will be base url conflicts?

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This fun scenario can go even one step further… What happens if somebody buys a license for their sandbox and then things get deleted…


Will there be any way for us to add in conditions or otherwise detect the sandbox environment through the ui?

I’m thinking it would be great to be able to detect the number of concurrent users a sandbox has to an app for example and potentially have a way of us acting on it (if we determine abuse).

We can always implement this ourselves but it would seem to be nicer for the customer if it was done inside the platform.

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@danielwester We had problems with the base URL and sandboxes toady. Luckily our customer reached out to us and we could resolve it.
On our end it seemed like the base URL was not existing after deleting the sandbox.


The ‘user’ here refers to the org admin. One Premium/Enterprise Jira product would be eligible to one sandbox product instead of every user having their own sandbox.

The sandbox url will be deleted along with the sandbox when it’s deleted.

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So, this means you’re actually going to notify us vendors/apps when this happens so we can properly delete old data and be all privacy and GDRP compliant, right? right?? :slight_smile:


How do you plan to manage app licenses? In the on-prem “sandbox” one could use dev licenses for apps, as well as the application. How do you plan to implement such in the Cloud sandbox?

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I saw that two sandbox licenses of our apps are displayed with evaluationOpportunitySize=0 in the CSV/API. Is that expected? Is that an identifier I could use here?

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Hi everyone,

Thank you all for the great questions. I haven’t had the time to go through each of them due to other priorities that have crept up. Thank you for your patience and I’ll aim to get responses out within the next 2 weeks.


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We would love to have an opt-in solution where customers get a cost-free sandbox subscription if they have a running paid subscription. That would be more convenient for customers and hassle-free for vendors.


Can you clarify what you mean by an uninstall event? You would receive the same information as if this was a production site being deleted. I’m not overly familiar with what that looks like for partners today, so let me know if I’ve misunderstood the question.

I’m afraid that’s an incorrect assumption. Our data copying process does not carry over any of the apps that the customer may have installed in their production site, which means that any of the app data that would have been stored in issue properties, etc would not be copied over.

Also thanks for catching the typo in the screenshot. I’ve updated it accordingly :slight_smile:

Thanks for the feedback Adam. Our team is working on future monetization possibilities for apps, so please stay tuned.

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We haven’t built anything that would address this need. Can you clarify what it is that you’re expecting? What does your current process look like for data deletion?

Hey Daniel,

Can you clarify what you mean by “detect the sandbox environment through the UI”? What UI are you referring to?