Switching Off the Lights: A Step-by-Step Guide to Safely Shutdown Jenkins


Jenkins is an open-source automation server designed to support the continuous integration and delivery of software applications. It provides a platform that allows developers to continuously integrate code changes into a central repository, automate builds, and perform tests on the codebase.

Jenkins is highly configurable and can be customized to meet the specific needs of different development teams. Due to its importance in software development, it is essential to ensure that Jenkins is shutdown properly.

Failure to do so may result in data loss or corruption, leading to project delays and increased costs. This article will provide a step-by-step guide on how to safely shutdown Jenkins.

The importance of shutting down Jenkins properly

Shutting down Jenkins properly is critical for maintaining the integrity of the project data stored within it. When Jenkins is running, there are several background processes that are constantly running such as scheduled builds and triggers, jobs, and plugins which may lead to data corruption if not handled correctly during shutdown. If these processes are disrupted or terminated abruptly when shutting down Jenkins manually or through system restarts they can leave some resources in an incorrect state which also causes potential loss of data.

An overview of the step-by-step guide

This article will provide you with a thorough twelve-step guide designed for safely shutting down your instance of Jenkins without losing any unsaved changes or causing any damage to your database. The following sections will cover how you can check for running builds, stop all jobs from running before proceeding with shutdown procedures as well as disabling scheduled builds & triggers along with saving configuration changes ensuring all your hard work doesn’t get lost during this process.

Step 1: Check for Running Builds

Explanation of running builds and their impact on shutting down Jenkins

Running builds refer to the jobs that are currently executing in Jenkins. These can include pipeline jobs, freestyle projects, or any other job type that is currently building. When you shut down Jenkins without stopping these running builds, data loss or corruption could occur.

There are several reasons why this happens: Firstly, by default, Jenkins writes build logs to disk frequently while a build is ongoing.

This means that if a build is abruptly terminated because of an unclean shutdown, there’s a chance that the logs might not have been written entirely to disk yet. Secondly, running builds consume resources such as RAM and CPU time.

If you shut down Jenkins without stopping these builds first, those resources will be lost and could cause further issues. If you have some builds that execute scripts or perform operations on external systems during runtime (such as deploying code), they might leave those systems in an inconsistent state if they get abruptly terminated.

How to check for running builds in Jenkins

Checking for running builds in Jenkins isn’t complicated; here’s how: Step 1: Navigate to the “Jenkins Home” page. Step 2: Look at the left-hand side menu and click “Build Executor Status”. Step 3: You’ll see a table showing all available executors (slave nodes) with their current status and information such as their labels and connections time.

Each executor row has two columns showing its current status—“Idle” or “Busy”. Executors marked as “Busy” are executing some job or task at the moment.

Steps to stop running builds before shutting down Jenkins

Stopping all your running jobs should be done before moving forward with shutting down your instance of Jenkin’s server. First, click on any of the busy executors to see which job is currently running on it.

You then have to interrupt the execution of all those jobs before shutting down Jenkins. To stop a running job, you’ll need to:

1. Navigate back to the “Jenkins Home” page. 2. Click on “Build Executor Status.”

3. Find and select the executor that has jobs running. 4. Click “Stop” for each job that is currently in progress.

It’s essential to repeat this process for every busy executor present in your Jenkins instance before proceeding further with shutting down Jenkins because there could be multiple executors executing various jobs simultaneously. By following these steps, you can ensure that your instance of Jenkins is safely shut down without risking data loss or corruption caused by abruptly stopping running builds.

Step 2: Stop All Jobs

Explanation of Jobs and Their Impact on Shutting Down Jenkins

In Jenkins, a job is a build process that is automated by the system. It can be a simple or complex task that executes scripts or commands to complete certain functions.

When Jenkins is running, jobs are continuously being executed in the background. These running jobs can impact the shutdown process of Jenkins, causing data loss or corruption if not stopped properly.

Stopping all jobs before proceeding with shutting down Jenkins ensures that all ongoing processes are terminated safely and no data loss occurs during the shutdown process. If any job is in progress while you shut down Jenkins abruptly, it may lead to failure of the build process and may result in lost data.

How to Stop All Jobs in Jenkins

To stop all jobs in Jenkins, follow these steps: 1. Click “Manage Jenkins” on the dashboard 2. Click “Manage Nodes” under “Manage Nodes and Clouds”

3. Select “Master” from the list of nodes 4. Click “Build Executor Status”

5. Click “Stop All Executors” These steps will stop all ongoing builds and ensure that no more jobs are executed until you restart your system again.

Steps to Ensure All Jobs are Stopped Before Proceeding with Shutdown

Stopping new builds doesn’t mean that already-running builds have been stopped completely – there might still be some running processes when you initiate the shutdown command for your system. To ensure all jobs are stopped before proceeding with shut down, follow these additional steps: 1. Wait for a few minutes after stopping all executors.

2. Check if any job is still running by clicking on “Build Executor Status.” 3. If any build is still running, wait until it’s completed.

4. Once completed, click on “Cancel queued items” to halt any queued jobs. These steps will help ensure that all jobs are stopped before initiating the shutdown command, resulting in a safe and successful shutdown of Jenkins.

Step 3: Disable Scheduled Builds and Triggers

Explanation of Scheduled Builds and Triggers

Scheduled builds and triggers in Jenkins are crucial to ensure the continuous integration and delivery of software. Scheduled builds enable developers to set a time for a build so that it can run automatically without manual intervention.

On the other hand, triggers are used to start a build when particular events occur, such as code changes being pushed to the repository. While scheduled builds and triggers are important in software development, they can also cause issues when shutting down Jenkins improperly.

If scheduled builds or triggers are running while Jenkins is being shut down, it may result in data loss or corruption. It is therefore vital to disable all scheduled builds and triggers before proceeding with the shutdown process.

How to Disable Scheduled Builds and Triggers

To disable scheduled builds in Jenkins, navigate to the “Manage Jenkins” section on the dashboard. Then click on “Configure System” followed by “Build Periodically”. In this section, uncheck all checkboxes related to periodic builds.

To disable triggers, go back to the dashboard and then select “Manage Jenkins”. Next, choose “Configure System” followed by “SCM Trigger”.

In this section, remove all repositories that trigger automatic build upon changes. Alternatively, you can deactivate SCM polling altogether by unchecking relevant checkboxes.

Steps To Ensure That All Scheduled Builds And Triggers Are Disabled Before Proceeding With Shutdown

Ensure that all planned builds have been canceled or disabled before proceeding with shutdown of your Jenkins instance. You can check if any planned build is active by visiting “Jenkins Home” page > “Schedule Build” option from left-hand menu > Click your job name > Verify if “Build periodically” checkbox is checked.

For disabling SCM polling triggered jobs: Visit job configuration (You can select your job from Jenkins home page).

Uncheck the “Poll SCM” option from “Build Triggers” tab. Once all scheduled builds and triggers are disabled, it is recommended to double-check by running a dry-run shutdown.

This process enables you to confirm whether all jobs have been stopped and whether any other configurations require attention before proceeding with the final shutdown. By following these steps, you can ensure that all scheduled builds and triggers have been disabled before shutting down Jenkins safely.

Step 4: Save Configuration Changes

Explanation on how configuration changes can be lost if not saved properly

Jenkins is a powerful tool that helps software development teams automate their build, test, and deployment processes. It allows users to configure various settings according to their requirements.

Configuration changes made in Jenkins are stored in memory and need to be saved before shutting down the server. If these changes are not saved, they will be lost permanently, and the server will revert to its default settings upon restarting.

This situation can lead to significant issues such as failed builds or data loss. Therefore, it is essential to save all configuration changes before shutting down Jenkins.

How to save configuration changes in Jenkins

Saving configuration changes in Jenkins is a straightforward process. On the Jenkins dashboard, click on “Manage Jenkins” from the left-hand menu. From the drop-down list that appears, select “Configuration as Code.” This option enables users to export all current configurations into a YAML file format that can be easily imported later.

Once you have clicked on this option, you will see an “Export” button at the bottom of the page. Click on it and download the exported configurations file onto your local machine.

Steps to ensure that all configuration changes are saved before proceeding with shutdown

Now that we know how to save configuration changes in Jenkins let’s discuss some steps required for ensuring that all configurations are correctly saved before proceeding with shutdown: 1) Check if any new plugins were installed recently and verify they have been configured. 2) Verify if any new jobs have been created and update their configurations.

3) Ensure all system configurations have been updated (such as security settings or notification plugins). 4) Review your exported YAML file carefully for accuracy. 5) Save your exported file safely onto multiple machines or servers for redundancy purposes.

It is crucial to verify that all configuration changes have been correctly saved before proceeding with server shutdown. It is highly recommended that you back up your configuration file regularly, allowing for easy recovery in case of any mishaps.


The safe shutdown of Jenkins involves several critical steps, and each step is equally important to avoid data loss or corruption. These steps include stopping all running builds and jobs, disabling scheduled builds and triggers, and saving configuration changes before shutting down the server.

Jenkins is a powerful tool that provides tremendous value to software development teams worldwide. However, it is essential to follow proper procedures when shutting down the server to maintain its optimal performance and avoid any unwanted surprises.

By following these simple steps outlined in this guide, users can safely shut down the Jenkins server without fear of losing any valuable data. Remember always to take backups regularly for redundancy purposes.

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