Atlassian users complain of cloud migration dead ends, especially in UK

Lack of local clouds and inflexible offers see users depart. Maybe the new ‘Compass’ developer experience tool will be more to their liking

The Register’s Monday story about Atlassian’s looming end-of-support deadline for its on-prem server products has turned up a nasty dilemma for UK users who need local data residency, because Atlassian doesn’t offer it and may not do so before support expires.

Atlassian will end support for its on-prem server in February 2024, and gave customers over three years notice of that decision. The company offers two alternatives: SaaS or “Datacenter” licenses. The latter, however, are charged for at least 500 users. Customers who acquired licenses for server products, which started at ten seats, therefore face big price rises.

A migration to the Atlassian cloud is not an option for some UK users.

“We currently have no options with Atlassian,” one reader told The Register. “We're ISO27001 certified so can't go out of support and can't host our data outside the UK.”

“When we've asked when UK residency will be available in response to Atlassian sales emails trying to move us to cloud, they have ignored us.”

Atlassian’s roadmap for providing UK data residency states the feature is “coming soon” in “Q4 2023 - Q1 2024”. The company confirmed that timeframe remains accurate. The Register pointed out that Q1 2024 stretches beyond February 15th, the day on which support for Atlassian servers expires. The company did not comment.

The reader quoted above told The Register they’ve started a migration to GitLab.

Another UK-based reader, who works for a global system integrator and contacted us on condition of anonymity, revealed that the company he works for has a substantial Atlassian product instance for its own use that will migrate to a Datacenter license. But it also maintains numerous small Atlassian server licences for reasons of privacy. Atlassian hasn’t offered a solution.

“We’ll just have to move away from them to something we hope is more sensible and stays that way,” the reader told The Register.

Other readers pointed out that they’ve integrated third party products with their Atlassian software, and those links are not reproducible in Atlassian’s cloud.

“The decision of whether or not to continue after February 2024 in an abusive relationship is a hard one,” one reader wrote.

This reader shared a story we’ve heard from other sources about Atlassian salespeople urging upgrades and not considering customer complaints.

“We have created spreadsheets for them showing the cost comparisons [of migration options]. We have had them list the benefits (nearly zero) and asked for the justification. The answer is always because SaaS is better.” This customer also said Atlassian tried to migrate them well before the end of support deadline, which they saw as a cash grab before it was needed.

Another response to our story came from an enterprise with 2,000 licences for server products that calculated license costs would triple after migration to either Atlassian’s cloud or datacenter licenses.

“It's really ridiculous the price increase for us and we can't continue with Atlassian products anymore, I guess it's same for many others too.”

A reminder: one of Atlassian’s values is “Don’t #@!% the customer”.

Developer experience product debuts
For customers willing to stick around, or clamber aboard, Atlassian today released a new product called “Compass” that it bills as a “developer experience” tool.

As explained to The Register by Taylor Pechacek, head of product for Compass at Atlassian, the tool represents a single source of all the resources developers use.

“There is an explosion of components in software,” he said. “Developers have to keep track of many more elements.”

Citing Gartner research that by 2026, 80 percent of software engineering organizations will establish "platform teams" to manage organizations' infrastructure, 75 percent of which will include developer self-service portals, Pechacek argued that managing software components is painful and hurts developer productivity.

Using Compass, he said, means that when developers chat about a service they’re working on “everyone knows about what it is and the resources to understand it better.”

Pechacek said Compass identifies relevant libraries and repositories used by a project and makes them available to developers so that if they’re working on related projects, they don’t have to hunt for the resources they’re expected to use. The result is a tool analogous to platform-as-a-service, but tuned to the need of each application or service an org employs.

Compass is SaaS and is available today. A free tier creates a catalogue of software components. The $7/month edition offers the full “developer experience” platform.


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