Woman Idea

The Path to Cloud in Canada - Data Residency Is Here!

October 12, 2023

Great news! Atlassian has finally launched data residency for its cloud products in Canada. So, why is this news so significant? This new option can make the difference between a go/no-go decision on moving to Atlassian Cloud for Canadian businesses.

The Quandary of the Canadian Cloud

If you're deploying the likes of Jira Software, Confluence, or Jira Service Management in Canada, you might have run into an issue when evaluating a migration to Atlassian Cloud. If your business is subject to legal or regulatory restrictions around where your cloud data can be hosted, your options for getting off your now unsupported Atlassian Server instance are extremely limited and potentially cost-prohibitive.

Imagine an organization with 200 employees and a legal or regulatory requirement to keep data on sovereign soil. For 200 employees, Jira Software Cloud can cost as little as $14,500 a year from Atlassian. If that's not an option because data residency doesn't exist in their country, the starter tier for Jira Software Data Center is the only other supported choice that fits their requirements – starting at $42,000 – almost three times the price! 

Until now, many Canadian businesses (those subject to data residency requirements) have been forced to choose between overpaying for their Atlassian products or staying on Server – doomed to lose support and security updates. 

The arrival of data residency for Atlassian Cloud products is great news, but with Server products now unsupported, time is of the essence as Server instances no longer receive security updates or bug fixes.

Wait, then hurry up!

Up until October of 2023, Atlassian's Cloud Data could only be hosted in Australia, Europe, Germany, Singapore, or the USA. Many countries (like Canada) have been hurting for data residency to facilitate their migration to Cloud, especially as the Server end-of-life date approached (and passed). Depending on the complexity of your Server instance, a typical migration to Cloud can take anywhere from 6 - 18 months, even in the capable hands of an Atlassian Solution Partner like Praecipio. Any custom fields, apps, workflows, or custom configurations that are mission critical to your operation will be factors in how long your migration might take. 

This doesn't mean it's too late to move to Cloud by any means, but some extra consideration may be required to get it done safely as you're coming off Atlassian Server after its end-of-support date. There are many measures that can be taken to ensure that a Server instance stays relatively secure through a transition to Cloud, but the time to make it happen is now. Praecipio's delivery teams have completed Cloud Migrations of all sizes, and are best-equipped to navigate a transition to Cloud for businesses across North America.

Canadian data residency is also good news for those who've recently migrated to Atlassian Data Center, where they might have chosen Cloud under different circumstances. We mentioned before that the annual cost of a Data Center instance is potentially much higher than that of Atlassian Cloud (sometimes up to three times the price), so completing a DC-to-Cloud migration could save significant licensing costs in the long run, not to mention the cost of hardware maintenance and person-hours to maintain infrastructure. Those resources can now be shifted into delivering work that adds value instead of just keeping the lights on.

Meet your Cloud Administrator

One unique aspect of Atlassian Cloud is the Cloud Administration Panel and the need for someone at your organization to claim the title of "Atlassian Cloud Administrator". With every Atlassian Cloud instance, no matter which set of products you choose to deploy, an Atlassian cloud site will be created for your organization, typically found at "yourcompanyname.Atlassian.net" (you can choose the handle when you create it). 

This panel serves as Mission Control for all your Atlassian products, users on each product, security settings, and of course, a place where you can change which location your data is hosted in. We've put together some instructions and a quick video on how to select a desired location in our Cloud FAQ section below. These instructions also apply to any existing cloud sites that prefer to host their data in the Great White North.

Assuming your cloud migration goes smoothly, these bumps in the road will be something to think back and smile on over a plate of poutine by this time next year. If keeping your data on Canadian soil was a blocker for your organization, let us know how Praecipio can help you prepare for your migration to Cloud in Canada. Atlassian's Cloud Roadmap has teased Canadian Data Residency for quite some time, and its arrival (ahead of schedule!) is a clear sign that Atlassian is investing in the Canadian enterprise market. Have a look at our quick FAQ section for answers to some common questions around Atlassian Cloud:

Can I host a cloud site wherever I want, like a local server?
No. Atlassian has dedicated cloud infrastructure that all of their Cloud instances are hosted on. You can select from their approved Data Centers in Australia, Europe, Germany, Singapore, the USA, and most recently Canada.
I'm currently running a cloud site that's hosted in another location; how do I move my products to Canadian servers?

Follow these steps or watch our quick video to see how it's done:


  • You must be a Cloud Site Administrator for your instance. From any Atlassian product, visit your Cloud Site Administration panel by selecting “Administration” from the product menu.
  • From there, select the "security" tab at the top of your screen.
  • In the Security screen, select "Data residency" from the Left-hand sidebar.
  • In this screen, your list of cloud products will populate. Choose the product you wish to move and select "move product".
  • Note: All Jira Products must be moved to the same location. Moving Jira Software will also cause Jira Service Management, Jira Product Discovery, and Jira Work Management to move.
  • Follow the prompts until you reach a dropdown to select a location. This is where you'll choose where you want your data hosted. Choose the one you like and hit the "next" button.
  • The next screen will show which products are moving (including products connected to the one you chose) and provide options for when you'd like to commit the move. Select what suits you best and hit the "Next" button. 
  • Finally, review your selections to make sure everything's correct and hit the "Submit request" button. From here it's in Atlassian's hands and they'll move your data on the selected timeline.
What happens if I don't do anything with my existing server instance?
  • Initially, maybe nothing! Over time, your instance's final security updates will become obsolete and ineffective against modern threats. This creates the potential for your data to be compromised, lost, or held for ransom via ransomware attack. 
  • The other thing that's important to note in this situation is in the event that something goes wrong with your Server instance, Atlassian will not provide assistance to remedy issues. Praecipio highly recommends migrating your instance to any supported products in lieu of this choice. 
Can I still migrate from Server to Cloud now that my Server instance is unsupported?
Praecipio can advise and support your organization as it makes its way to the cloud in the most secure way possible, even with an unsupported Server instance. However, the longer you wait to migrate, the greater the risk of security incidents or bugs that Atlassian will not help you fix.


Set Your Migration Up for Success

Learn About Cloud Migration with Praecipio