What JIRA versions to support with a new V2 plugin?

Hello I am new to the JIRA development group and have been building a V2 plugin and will be looking to go live fairly soon. My question is how backwards compatible should I make a new plugin? I am using some of the newer features in the APIs and have it compiling and running against JIRA 7.2 and upwards. It looks like JIRA 7.2 was released in August 2016 which is getting on towards 2 years ago now. From other more experienced people in this area would that be sufficient as a start?

I have been looking for any stats that indicate the percentage of firms using JIRA 5, 6 and 7 but don’t seem to be able to find anything. Does anyone have any data on this?

@daveg_utingu, I don’t have any version usage data for you, but un general, my advise would be to look at the Atlassian Support End-of-Life policy: https://confluence.atlassian.com/support/atlassian-support-end-of-life-policy-201851003.html

As you can see, Jira 7.2 is the lowest supported version. Of course, there will always be customers who are still on earlier versions (I actually have a customer on Jira 5.x).

I would personally go live with your add-on and consider back porting it for older versions on demand. It is clearly a trade-off between the amount of work involved. If it is a considerable amount of work to add support, you can hold off until you receive a customer requests. If sales are going slow you might want to consider back-porting to advance your business. Otherwise, I would invest my time in adding new features to your product.

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I quickly looked at the active installation data of my add-on (broken down into application version) and it seems that roughly 20 to 25% of the installations are pre Jira 7.2. But that number includes people having bought the add-on a while ago when I was supporting these versions. Typically, these customers will buy the add-on once and since they don’t renew their Jira version, they will not renew your add-on as well. So keep that in mind, the preferred customers are those that will renew their maintenance license every year and those will tend to keep up to date with Jira.

But like @remie said, it’s a matter of time and energy. I personally wouldn’t bother with Jira 6 as some API have changed between 6 and 7. However, there are still customers on 6. As for Jira 7, unless you’re using interfaces strictly existing in later versions, it’s relatively easy to start with Jira 7.0.

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Also, if you’re aiming at larger customers, you need to be mindful about Enterprise releases - https://www.atlassian.com/blog/enterprise/introducing-enterprise-releases

The largest organizations will likely upgrade rarely and only from one enterprise release to another. Right now, it’s 7.2.latest and 7.6.latest.

My personal opinion is that you’ll be fine if you support 7.2 and later, but you might need to keep supporting 7.2 for quite a while.

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I’m going to echo what what everyone else has said so far.

Use the End Of Life matrix to provide the initial set of supported versions. I use the “if I can’t get support - then I can’t support the app I’m building” thought set. While we might not release a new features for all of the supported versions (in some cases it’s not practical to do) - we do try to provide maintenance releases for older versions.

We use the Active Installation data to make sure we’re not missing any large set of customers. With the increased Jira releases - larger instances are not going to upgrade as often… (I would also dig into it for trends and patterns. ie. is 7.4 slowly going away for you etc)

Which goes goes to the Enterprise releases - we’ll be supporting those because not only is it a good thing to do - a lot of small customers today will be large customers tomorrow so they’re looking at following the “large” patterns. The other aspect to this is that if you try to keep up with Atlassian’s new release schedule you’ll end up upgrading everyday.

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Many tks for your responses very helpful. The tip on Enterprise releases is useful I wasn’t aware of that. If I do have to go backwards from 7.2 it will be a pain. Going to version 6 looks like quite a change in the APIs. Right now I am on my own I still have a day job and two young kids so not much time. For browser support I am going to follow Atlassian’s page here https://confluence.atlassian.com/cloud/supported-browsers-744721663.html. Assume that is what mots people do?

I would ditch IE over Edge and wait for anyone to complain. Keep in mind that Atlassian has a far larger user base to cater. But in general: if you use AtlasKit (React) and don’t do anything to fancy yourself in terms of client-side scripting you should be fine.

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