Generating Jira Token

Published on March 16th, 2021


In order to use the Jira plugin, Roadie needs an API token to communicate with Jira APIs.

These are set within backstage at the following url:


This page describes how to create and set up the API token.


Step 1: Create an API token

Start by visiting the user profile settings page for your Jira user: Note that it is a good practice to create an automation/bot account to Jira for API usage

Click on the “Create API token” button.

Personal API Tokens screen in Atlassian with no tokens defined

On the modal window you can give the token a label, so you can recognize it later, e.g. “Roadie Backstage” and finally Atlassian will show you the API token once. Make note of this token, you will only be able to see it once.

New created token modal window with a possibility to copy the token

Step 2: Base64 encode the credentials

The Jira plugin handles authentication using Basic auth so the token needs to be converted into a compatible format. First we need to prefix the token with the Jira user email and base64 encode it.

For example

[email protected]:hTBgqVcrcxRYpT5TCzTA9C0F

would translate to


Via the following command:

read -s tmp; echo -n "[email protected]:$tmp" | base64 ; unset tmp 

NOTE: the -n flag removes new line characters from the echo output.

Step 3: Store the credentials and Jira URL in Roadie

Visit https://<tenant-name> and enter the base64 encoded and prefixed token value from above into JIRA_API_TOKEN.

Additionally add the URL to your Jira instance into JIRA_API_URL. The URL should not contain a trailing slash, e.g.

Step 4: Add the required annotations to some components

Edit the YAML metadata of a Backstage component to add the following annotations:

    jira/project-key: <example-jira-project-key>
    jira/component: <example-component> # optional, you might skip this value to fetch data for all components
    jira/token-type: Bearer # optional, used for Activity stream feed.