Jira Cloud vs Jira Server. Learn the key differences


Never miss a post!

Sign up for our newsletter and get FREE Development Trends delivered directly to your inbox.

You can unsubscribe any time. Terms & Conditions.

You have a lot knowledge to process when you enter the Atlassian ecosystem. From deciding on the pricing model that makes sense, choosing which Atlassian platforms to adopt, to deciding what pricing model is best. You must make the right decision when choosing between Jira’s available hosting options, Jira Cloud and Server (now Data Center).

The main difference between Jira Cloud and Jira Server is where you store your data. Cloud solutions generally allow you to store your data on other servers. Your data is transferred from your computer to the operator’s servers. They are then stored and backed up. Jira Server can be used as a self-hosting service. Your instance is kept behind your firewall and security on your servers. Your data is not sent anywhere. You store it in your own storage with backup. It is a good idea to have additional storage off-site. This article will discuss Jira Cloud and Jira Server, as well as their key differences.

What is Jira Cloud?

Jira Cloud lets you run Jira and Confluence while Atlassian hosts your Jira deployment. Jira Cloud provides the convenience of a Jira instance with minimal setup, in addition to all the usual benefits associated with a quality cloud hosting service like reliability and scalability. Automatic updates can be used to improve your Jira products.

In general, Jira Cloud makes the most sense for organizations that want a software-as-a-service (SaaS) experience and don’t require the customizability or control offered by Jira Server and Data Center. Tiered pricing is also an option for companies whose requirements frequently change from month to month. Its tiered pricing system is based on how many users accessed your instance within the last month.

Jira Cloud has simplified the administration, leaving only a limited amount of responsibility for configuring and managing Atlassian software. Atlassian now allows you to create sandbox environments for testing changes along with production Cloud instances. However, this requires a Premium subscription or Enterprise Cloud subscription. Atlassian automatically performs updates so that your tools are always up-to-date. While this provides convenience, you will lose control over your upgrade schedule and may have difficulty adapting to new interfaces or bugs. Atlassian ensures security compliance and provides security solutions. Your Atlassian platforms’ UI limits customization to the options available.

What is Jira Server?

Jira Server allows you to host Atlassian’s products either on your own infrastructure or through a third-party cloud provider. Jira Cloud requires more technical knowledge and work to maintain Jira software, but Jira Server gives you complete control over your deployment, including security and updates. These options might perform better than Cloud, depending on how your setup is.

Jira Server is no longer available, and new licenses cannot be purchased. Data Center is the only option for new Atlassian organizations. Although Jira Data Center is more expensive than Server, it offers superior security, customization, and reliability. Data Center is the most robust and performant option and can be used by even the largest companies.

Data Center was designed for enterprise businesses. Data Center is designed to meet the demands of large organizations. It offers high performance, availability, scalability, and seamless user management. Data Center is the best choice for organizations that need to manage their infrastructure to meet compliance, performance, security, and compliance requirements, as well as integration needs. Data Center’s high availability and multiple node instances are great ways for companies to minimize downtime if there is a disruption to their service.

Jira Cloud vs Jira Server: Key Differences

User Interface

The first thing you will likely ask when you are opening up Jira Cloud is, “What happened to my menus?” In Cloud, the top ribbon has been completely replaced with a couple of sidebars. It looks totally different at first, but when you dig a little deeper, you see that things aren’t totally unfamiliar here. The sidebar is split into permanent and contextual sections, and hitting the Jira logo will reset to the options you are familiar with from Server. If you then go ahead and collapse the sidebar, it really starts to resemble Server’s ribbon, just sideways. You have dashboards, projects, and issues buttons, and you can create issues with the plus sign. Two notable differences are the Star and Search buttons, which are great ways to get to recent issues or projects.


Jira Cloud is more project-oriented than Jira Server. You won’t find a board without a project, both go hand in hand. The Jira server is more board-oriented, so you’ll often see teams that work on boards that draw issues from multiple projects. This is a big difference, but Jira Cloud users can still enjoy a server-like experience with personal boards. Click starred and go to View All Boards. Next, create a board by filtering the results. Finally, locate it in your profile. You now have a board that can pull in issues from multiple projects.


Jira Cloud also includes Next-Gen projects. This is a major philosophical difference from Jira Server. Jira Cloud was designed for use without dedicated admins. Next-Gen projects are the key. Any user can create a Next-Gen Kanban or Next-Gen Scrum project in Jira Cloud. Once they have done so, they become the project’s administrator. Next-gen projects can be created easily and are isolated so that you don’t have to change settings. Next-Gen projects are so important to Jira that they can almost be considered a completely new version.


It’s obvious that Jira Server permission settings can be complicated. With Jira Cloud’s Next-Gen project permissions being managed by regular users, it was necessary to streamline the process. There are three access options to Next-Gen projects: Open, which allows anyone access; Limited, which allows only certain users to edit the project; or Private, which only adds users can view the project. It is easy to add users. These settings are only applicable to one next-gen project. Project admin tasks can be shared among the users without fear of interference.


Jira Cloud does not offer all features that you may need. Jira Cloud might not be able to allow complex integrations with other instances. Atlassian developers may have made some accesses unavailable to others, which can lead to limitations in administration. If plugins were not created for Jira Cloud, they might not work with Jira Cloud. They may also not allow you to sync your project with another instance.

Jira Server offers more flexibility if you want to customize and cover multiple processes. There are many options for modifications and more extensions available for Jira Server versions.

Control and customization

Jira cloud offers greater innovation and speed. However, some teams require full control over their data hosting infrastructure and data, and they choose Jira server or data center deployment. These products can be deployed on your internal machines behind your firewall. This may be necessary if you need strict data localization, where information is kept in a specific country or region.

You can now control the installation, testing, and scheduling of software updates with Jira server and Data Center. This is a great tool for companies that need to manage the timing of updates and prevent any downtime that might impact their projects or teams.


Jira Server is an annually licensed product. This means that you only pay once a year. You have the option to upgrade your Jira within one year, provided that there have been any improvements. At the end of your licensing year, it is up to you whether you want to renew and upgrade support or freeze your Jira instance. This decision does not waste data and you can still use the solution even if the application is no longer available. Jira Data Center costs USD 42,000 annually for 500 users.

Atlassian offers a la carte pricing for Jira cloud. Your subscription begins with Jira Work Management or Jira Software. You can then choose from the available apps on the Atlassian Marketplace. They offer volume discounts for adding more users. The pricing rate at which the user falls determines the unit price for each user. Jira cloud costs USD 35,500 annually for users between 501 and 600.

Final Thoughts

So that was all about Jira Cloud, Jira Server, and their key differences. It is not an easy decision to make between Atlassian’s products. It is important to evaluate the needs of your company now and in the future. You should also consider which Atlassian products will be used and which option would make the most financial sense. It is helpful to have experts on your side when considering all of these factors. You can choose Jira cloud or Jira server and start exploring the world of Jira.


Our website uses cookies that help it to function, allow us to analyze how you interact with it, and help us to improve its performance. By using our website you agree by our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.