Setting up and using Zendesk for JIRA Server (OnPremise)

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Note: A newer version of the integration is available for JIRA Cloud (OnDemand) users. See Setting up Zendesk for JIRA Cloud (OnDemand) integration. The new integration does not currently support JIRA Server (OnPremise) installations.

If your organization uses Zendesk for customer support and JIRA for internal work processes, you can use the Zendesk for JIRA integration to escalate support tickets to JIRA issues, share comments between support agents and JIRA users, and solve Zendesk tickets by solving JIRA issues.

The integration described in this article supports the following tasks:

  • Create a new JIRA issue from a Zendesk ticket
  • Link a ticket to an existing JIRA issues
  • Resolve Zendesk tickets automatically by resolving JIRA issues
  • Link multiple Zendesk help desks to a single JIRA account

Zendesk for JIRA uses the Networked Help Desk open standard to synchronize information between Zendesk and JIRA.

Make sure you check out the release notes for the latest updates and known issues.

Setting up Zendesk for JIRA

Zendesk for JIRA supports JIRA 7.0 to 7.1.x, JIRA Server 6.0 to 6.4.x (any 6.4 version), including JIRA Data Center.

Per Atlassian's end-of-life policy, we no longer actively support JIRA versions older than JIRA 6.0.

Installing the Zendesk plugin in JIRA

In addition to installing the Zendesk plugin as described below, make sure all of the following apply to your JIRA On-Premise server:

  • You white listed the Zendesk public IP addresses listed here. You could run into firewall issues at any time if you don't white list the IP addresses.
  • If you're using SSL, have a full SSL certificate stack from a certificate authority. Self-signed certs are not supported. The intermediate certificate is commonly not installed on the JIRA server.
  • Make sure that ports 80/8080/443 are open (depending on your SSL settings) on your network for inbound/outbound traffic between Zendesk and JIRA. If you'd like to open only one specific port, you can hard-code the port number in the ticket sharing agreement URL. Example: 123.456.78:5555.

JIRA 7.x

Download the current plugin version below from the Atlassian Marketplace.

Current versions of the Connectors for JIRA 7.0.x:
  • ServiceRocket Core Connector – Plugin – v2.0.9
  • ServiceRocket JIRA Connector – Plugin – v2.0.9
  • zendesk-connector-plugin – v3.0.2

JIRA 6.0 - 6.4.x

Download the current plugin version below from the Atlassian Marketplace and install it with the Universal Package Manager (UPM). Please note that the plugin listing is archived and not searchable from the Marketplace.

Current versions of the Connectors for JIRA 6:

  • ServiceRocket Core Connector – Plugin – v1.6.0
  • ServiceRocket JIRA Connector – Plugin – v1.6.0
  • zendesk-connector-plugin – v2.3.3

Creating an application link in JIRA

An application link specifies your Zendesk URL and authorizes JIRA to access your Zendesk account. The link is required to create a connection between JIRA and Zendesk.

  1. In JIRA, select Add-ons from the Administration () menu in the upper-right corner of the page.
  2. Click Connections in the sidebar.
  3. Under Add New Cloud/System Connection, select Zendesk from the External System Type menu, and click Add.

  4. Click the Manage Application Links link next to the Application Link dropdown menu.

    A form to add a new application link appears on the page.

  5. Enter a name for your application link. We suggest Zendesk Application Link.
  6. In both the RPC URL and Display URL fields, enter your Zendesk account's URL. Example: http://mysubdomain.zendesk.com.

    If you have the Web portal and have a host-mapped Zendesk account, enter your host-mapped domain. Example: http://support.mydomain.com. If you have an SSL-enabled Zendesk account, use https:// instead of http:// in your URL. You can check these settings in Zendesk by clicking the Admin icon in the sidebar, then selecting Settings > Account > Branding > Host Mapping. Your SSL settings are in Settings > Security > SSL.

  7. Click Add. A new application link is created.
  8. Click the Configure Authentication link under Actions.
  9. Enter a Zendesk username and API token, and then click Update.

    Your username is your email address followed by a forward slash and the word “token”. Example: email@zendesk.com/token. Your password is the encrypted token itself.

    Your token is listed in Zendesk under Admin > Channels > API.

Creating a connection in JIRA

A JIRA connection specifies an application link that gives JIRA access your Zendesk account. A connection also specifies the JIRA accounts you want to associate with your Zendesk account.

  1. On the Add-ons page in JIRA, click Connections in the sidebar.
  2. In the Add New Cloud/System Connection section, enter a name for the new connection, select Zendesk from the External System Type menu, and click Add.

    We suggest "Zendesk (yoursubdomain.zendesk.com)" as the connection name.

  3. On the Add New Connection page that follows, select your new application link from the menu and click Add to create the connection.

  4. On the next page that appears, click Launch Wizard.
  5. Select the JIRA projects you want to associate with your Zendesk account.

    Note: Associating too many projects with your Zendesk account may cause the integration to time out in Zendesk when fetching the projects.
  6. Select Yes, you would like to automatically associate a Zendesk ticket ID field to your JIRA account.
  7. Click Create Configurations.
    The wizard associates the JIRA projects with your Zendesk account. It also maps the following fields between JIRA issues and Zendesk tickets:
    • JIRA Description - Zendesk Description
    • JIRA Summary - Zendesk Subject
    Note: The default field mapping is generated independently of the Yes/No option in the settings.

Setting up ticket sharing

Zendesk creates new issues and synchronizes comments with JIRA using the same method that allows sharing of tickets between Zendesk accounts.

You must be an administrator in Zendesk to set up ticket sharing.

  1. In Zendesk, click Manage () at the bottom of the sidebar and then select Tickets.
  2. Click the Ticket Sharing tab, then click the Add Sharing Invite link.
  3. Select Atlassian JIRA.
  4. Configure the sharing agreement as follows:
    • JIRA server URL - Enter the address of your JIRA server. Example: https://mydomain.jira.com
    • Comment and status permissions - Decide if you want to let JIRA users make public or private comments, and sync status between the JIRA issue and the Zendesk ticket.
    • Tag synchronization - Do not select anything from the dropdown. Tag syncing can corrupt the ticket sharing agreement and cause the integration to break.

  5. Click Send Invite.
  6. Sign in to JIRA as an administrator, select Add-ons from the Administration () menu in the upper-right corner of the page, and click Connections.
  7. Click the Ticket Sharing link of your Zendesk connection.
  8. Click Accept.
  9. Set any of the following sharing options in the ticket sharing agreement and click Update.
    • Project and Issue Type - The default JIRA project and issue type created if a ticket is automatically shared with JIRA (Zendesk Enterprise customers only)
    • Default Reporter - You must enter a valid JIRA username for a JIRA admin user or the integration will not work. This is the JIRA username used for the reporter field when a JIRA issue is created. The JIRA admin user must have full access permissions -- Developer, Admin, owner, and user -- for the projects that JIRA shares with Zendesk.
    • Allow public comments - Leave unchecked to force all JIRA comments to be private comments when sent back to Zendesk

Testing the connection

After you set up ticket sharing, you can test the connection between JIRA and Zendesk.

  1. If you're not already on the Connections page in JIRA, login to JIRA as an administrator, select Add-ons from the Administration () menu in the upper-right corner of the page, and click Connections.
  2. Locate your connection in the list and click the Test link under Actions.

    You should get a "Connection successful” message.

Installing the JIRA app in Zendesk

The final setup step is to install the JIRA app in your Zendesk.

Note: If you're using Zendesk Classic, you can skip this section. The app is installed automatically in your Zendesk when you install the Zendesk plug-in in JIRA.
  1. In Zendesk, click Manage () at the bottom of the sidebar and then click the Browse link under Apps.
  2. Click the JIRA icon and then click Install App on the upper-right side of the page.
  3. Enter a title for the app and click Install.
  4. Refresh the browser so that your Zendesk recognizes the new app.

Sharing tickets

Zendesk agents can share tickets as new JIRA issues.

Note: The integration does not support creating JIRA issues from tickets received through the Twitter channel.
  1. In Zendesk, go to the ticket you'd like to share as a JIRA issue, and then select the JIRA agreement from the Share menu in the ticket properties panel.

  2. When the JIRA App panel opens on the right, select your project and issue type, or paste a JIRA story ID to share the ticket with a specific story.
    Note: If you have a large number of JIRA projects associated with your Zendesk account, the integration may time out in Zendesk after ten seconds when it tries to fetch all the JIRA projects. A workaround is to reduce the number of associated JIRA projects.
  3. Update your ticket as needed, then click Submit.

Submitting the ticket shares the ticket information with JIRA. The Zendesk ticket header indicates that the ticket has been shared with JIRA. The sidebar app also indicates the shared JIRA issue ID, resolution, and current assignee.

Tip: Right-click the issue ID in the app sidebar to open it in JIRA in a new tab.

In JIRA, an issue is created with all the comments from the Zendesk ticket as well as the subject and original description.

Note: If you encounter connection issues, make sure that you entered a valid JIRA username into the Default Reporter field on the sharing agreement in JIRA. See Set up ticket sharing.

Syncing comments and status

By default, any comment you enter in a JIRA issue is synced automatically to the shared Zendesk ticket.

For example, here's a new comment for an issue in JIRA:

The comment appears Zendesk and retains the JIRA username:

In addition, selecting any resolution in JIRA solves the Zendesk ticket. In the following example, somebody resolves an issue in JIRA:

As a result, the status of the shared ticket in Zendesk is set to Solved:

Advanced tips

 

Custom field mappings

By default, the integration maps the following fields between JIRA issues and Zendesk tickets:
  • JIRA Description - Zendesk Description
  • JIRA Summary - Zendesk Subject

These default mappings are the only mappings officially supported by Zendesk.

Note: While custom mappings may be configured, they are not guaranteed to work. Custom mappings are not supported by Zendesk Support because they can corrupt the ticket sharing agreement and cause the integration to break.

Moving Zendesk-linked JIRA issues between JIRA projects

When you move a Zendesk-linked JIRA issue between JIRA projects, the status display of the JIRA issue in Zendesk automatically shows the updated issue key of the JIRA issue.
Important: The JIRA issue automatically takes on the new mappings of its new project.

If you move the JIRA issue to a project that's not associated with your Zendesk connection through a mapping scheme, you need to add the project to that mapping scheme.

  1. In JIRA, select Projects > [Your Project], and then click Administer Project on the upper-right side of your project page.
  2. In the project sidebar, click Project Mappings.
  3. Select the mapping scheme for your mapping.

Connecting to multiple Zendesk accounts

If you use multiple Zendesk accounts, you can create a separate connection to each Zendesk account using separate project mappings. For each Zendesk account you want to connect, follow the setup steps in this guide.

Note: Each project can be mapped to only one connection at a time. Mapping a project to a new connection removes its association with any previous connection.
Have more questions? Submit a request

Comments

  • 1

    In the section of this article "Installing the JIRA app in Zendesk" the steps for installing the App are incorrect. There is no " click the Browse link under Apps" and there is no App called JIRA.

    When I search for JIRA there are two Apps that show up one for JIRA OnDemand and one for JIRA OnPremise. Since I am trying to create a connection with JIRA OnPremise I suspect I should be able to use the JIRA OnPremise App but that App says that it only supports JIRA 6.0.x to 6.4.x (any 6.4 version) and this article says that the integration supports JIRA Server 7.

    What Zendesk App do I use to complete this integration?

  • 1

  • 1

    Hi Emily and James,

     
    My name is Yuri and I'm the Product Manager at Zendesk for Strategic Integrations, including JIRA. I hear your feedback and as a matter our fact we've been running a version of our integration that is aimed at reducing clutter and improving the workflow between support teams and engineering teams for over a year and a half. 
     
    However that version had always only been for JIRA Cloud (On Demand). We are now about to enter a beta phase with his new integration for JIRA Server as well. 
     
    Let me know if you'd like to participate in the beta and I'll be in touch. 
     
    Thanks
    Yuri
     
  • 1

    Is there a way with this integration to stop the Zendesk ticket comments from showing up in the comments section of the JIRA item? I found a way for stopping the JIRA comments from showing in Zendesk comments but not the other way around.

    I want to have the linking show between the Zendesk ticket and the JIRA bugs but not share the comments because it ends up being too cluttered having all of the Zendesk ticket comments and the JIRA bug comments all in the JIRA comments section.

  • 0

    In working on jira onDemand, i do all steps ... and all was good auth success but when i try to test connection (in JIRA) ... 

    throws me ...

    Failed to establish connection to remote system 

    No ticket sharing agreement exists between this JIRA instance and the specified Zendesk account 'http://xxx.zendesk.com'

    ideas ?

  • 0

    The plugin has been Archived and will not show up in the marketplace. You need to follow the link the document provides or the one in the comments. You can then paste the "Download" URL into the UPM upload dialog.

    Wish the docs were more explicit about this.

  • 0

    @AdamL Two different customers submit a ticket, with the same bug. Our Customer Service team, doesn't check, or, potentially, doesn't even have access to, all of the tickets with a software bug in it. Once the bug gets to jira our QA team takes over. Now we are in Jira with two bugs that cover the same issue. Fixing one fixes both, so what we have done in the past is combine the bugs into one bug. 

     

    Tickets are private, so a customer can't see if someone else has submitted a bug. (IMHO, in most cases that is a good thing but for bugs can be problematic.) Further if you combine tickets, even if you can, the QA team/Devs can't see who is commenting as it comes in as posted by the account the ticket is posted by. (In our case "bug reporter.") 

     

    So if two customers both reports, for example, that the render engine spikes the ram and locks up at the beginning of a render, how do I combine those two tickets? Or more importantly, since I am a Zendesk "Admin" how does one of my QA team, who are not Zendesk agents, combine duplicate tickets without cutting the customer off from their bugs? 

  • 0

    Hi Folks, We have recently installed this plugin v 2.2.10 to integrate our on premise JIRA (v 6.3.10). All is working fine, but we actually also need ticket creation from JIRA to Zendesk, so users in JIRA should be able to create a new ticket in Zendesk ... is that possible? If there is no existing plugin, does Zendesk allow such remote creation of tickets via their API? Any pointers will be helpful.

  • 0

    Hi All, 

    ZD Support has told me a number of times since the new agent UI was released that the JIRA integration app is 'under development'.  My question is: When can we be provided some ETA on delivery?  The new Agent UI is very exciting and I know it will greatly improve our service experience on both sides of the desk, but we literally cannot use it until the JIRA integration is working....

    Can we get any stats report at all on this aside from it being 'high priority'?

    • NM
  • 0

    @Rory Sorry but that is not possible. If you have sync enabled on your ticket sharing agreement and the JIRA ticket is resolved then the Zendesk ticket will also be solved. There currently isn't anyway to sync custom ticket status mappings from JIRA to Zendesk, as these are not always 1:1 depending on your JIRA statuses.

    @Brian You do not need a Zendesk license for each JIRA user, but you will need a license for  each of your Zendesk support agents. You technically only need 1 JIRA admin account to be linked to Zendesk.

  • 0

    @Rosemarie and @Paul, at this time we don't have a timeline for supporting JIRA 6.4. We won't be able to give any definitive dates until we hear from Atlassian regarding the release of their Connect Framework.

  • 0

    HI.

    I have  the same problem that Tomás Prado.

    I've begun to use the integration between Zendesk and JIRA  last Saturday and almost my tests was successful, but the comments make on Zendesk and synchronize  to JIRA are becoming wrong when it has special characters like  á, í, ã, õ, ç, etc...

    see the follow example.

     "para ambos as opções. Esta falha acontece em todos os PDVs apos a Atualização"

    My language is Portuguese and I'm using the version 4.4.3 of JIRA

    Anyone know what can be happening?

    Thanks.

     

  • 0

    Hi Zendesk,

    We have a lot of Jira Projects. When we select them all to be used within Zendesk the projects don't show up in the shring screen. If we select a limited set of project it all works fine. Is there a maximum of projects that can be used or can this bug be fixed?

    Greetings Ralph

  • 0

    Is it possible to not have an unlinked Jira ticket's comments be "clobbered"/overwritten when linking this ticket to a Zendesk ticket? When linking an existing Jira ticket, it would be best if the Jira ticket's original comments were kept intact and then the linked Zendesk ticket comments should be appended after the last comment in the original Jira ticket. If so, is there a particular setting I can make to in Jira to fix this?

     

    John

  • 0

    Hi Brian

    We are testing currently the plugin with 6.2 and 6.3 and should be able to officialize support very soon.

    Just to clarify this is still the old plugin (i.e the current On Premise one we offer) we haven't ported our newest most up to date version to On Premise yet because Atlassian doesn't yet allow "Connect" add-ons to be ported to On Premise.

    I'll keep you posted

    Thanks

    Maxime

  • 0

    Marc, Rosemarie, Russell, and Thomas: this morning we released v2.2.13 of the JIRA Server connector on the Atlassian Marketplace which resolves the issue you have all reported with tickets and comments not syncing. You can visit the Marketplace to download the latest version of the connector:
    https://marketplace.atlassian.com/plugins/net.customware.plugins.connector.zendesk.zendesk-connector-plugin/versions

  • 0

    Is there any way to have the Subject and description information passed onto JIRA for when a ticket is created, but then never overwritten afterwards?

  • 0

    Hi Brandon, 

    I know you have a ticket in with our Advanced Support team - it's moving up the list and you should hear from someone soon. I'm sorry this isn't working well, we'll help you sort it out. 

  • 0

    Hi,

    When I add my Story number from the Zendesk ticket nothing happens. The link from the JIRA story works and takes me to the ticket directly. Can you tell me please what's the problem?

  • 0

    @Toni Van de Voorde

    That's exactly what I'm seeing too. I tried to get this working in Jira 5 (I had plugin issues when trying with Jira 4.3, so this project was put on the backburner until the release of Jira 5) - and everything looks great until I try to share in Zendesk and get a "Could not load projects from JIRA". Doing the tests in Jira check out just fine.

    Is this just a Jira 5 compatibility thing?

  • 0

    Our Zendesk <-> JIRA integration is working great except for one thing.

    We don't want Zendesk comments to come in as JIRA comments. They're not useful to developers, cause a lot of noise, and aren't attached to the correct JIRA users anyway.

    In my Mappings Settings in JIRA, I have Automatically pull new comments from Remote System set to Disabled, yet comments still come in. Is there anything else I can do to keep Zendesk comments from coming in (yet still allow tickets to be created?)

    Thanks!

  • 0

    Hi everyone, thanks for the information and we are making good progress -- our dev team is looking into what we think is the root cause. Thomas, related to the error you shared, we think the root cause is related to this. There's a value being passed from Zendesk into JIRA that is too large for JIRA to handle, which is causing the failure.

  • 0

    Hi Jay, dig into your JIRA database : take a look at this table :
    AO_437CB5_AGREEMENT] or something with AO_******AGREEMENT take a look at the urls inside, i have to manually change SENDERURL whith a request like this one :

    Set [SENDER_URL]='http://support.mymondo.info/sharing'

    Where ID='1'

    --> And my agreement was ok !

  • 0

    I second the request regarding status of integration with the new UI. This integration was one of the reasons we adopted Zendesk, and we cannot use it as expected. Feeling duped...

  • 0

    Hi, I have spent integration with Jira as written in this tutorial. But, when i click "Test connections" in Jira i have this error: 

    No ticket sharing agreement exists between this JIRA instance and the specified Zendesk account

    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/82714136/screen/031.png.

    Any idea how fix it?

  • 0

    Hi,

    My integration is fully working, but when I synchronise one ticket from zendesk to JIRA and this ticket has a special character like "á ó í ú" it gets like this �� in JIRA. We dont know where to start to solve this issue.

    We are working with an on demand JIRA installation.

    Could you give us some advice?

    thanks

  • 0

    @Ramesh - I would check two things here: 1) Make sure you have set up the proper HTTP/HTTPS setup (based on whether or not your Zendesk uses hostmapping &/or SSL) and 2) Make sure you have gone through and set up token access authentication (Under the "Create an application link in JIRA" section above)

    @Rodrigo - Your issue is a bit more complicated, so I will be making a ticket for you. You should get an email soon.

    @Ralph - As far as I am aware, there is not a maximum number of projects - you should be able to have as many as you want. What kind of number of projects are we looking at here? I have heard of issues where people are using 50 or more projects.

    @Robby - See the "Setting up ticket sharing" section above - you can specify in the Ticket Sharing agreement and within JIRA to set up private comments only. I believe there are two settings: (ZENDESK: 'Comment and status permissions' and JIRA: 'Allow public comments - Leave unchecked to force all JIRA comments to be private comments when sent back to Zendesk').

    @Vicki - This is actually the expected behavior. If the JIRA ticket is resolved w/ a comment, the Zendesk ticket should also be updated with a comment (public or private, however it is set up) and the status should be synced (again, assuming proper set up). Could you clarify what your behavior is at this point?

    @Jerome - If you are using JIRA OnDemand, you should always be up-to-date (assuming the fix has been pushed on the Atlassian/JIRA side of things)!

  • 0

    Steven, I know you just said that you can't share any timelines yet but what is some rough estimate for the development needed for "to bring the JIRA Server plugin inline with our JIRA Cloud plugin from a feature perspective " ?

    For example is it fair to say we shouldn't expect this within 2015?

    Not an urgent matter for us so we can wait but I'd like to know whether to just wait for the new plugin or whether we are a year off from that so it's worth bothering with the current one anyway.

  • 0

    Stash - thank you, we are not looking to create subtasks to accommodate this so hopefully this will be fixed soon. Maybe Zendesk could publish the sourcecode and let the community maintain/enhance it?

    Thanks.

    John

  • 0

    Hi Laura,

    After speaking with support, I was under the impression that JIRA 6.3.1 (latest version) wasn't compatible with the ZenDesk integration? Is that why Daniel is having issues?

    We just set up JIRA 6.3.1 OnPremise and we'd LOVE to connect it with ZenDesk. That said, is it even possible?

    Cheers,

    Dan

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