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To use project fields as custom fields, we need to do an update process after a project field modification because we need to spread project changes to issues.
Visually nothing has changed in the edit project fields page, but when you click on the save button the process will be launched if you changed a project field that is used as a custom field. The user could see the state of this update looking at the project fields page.
These are the different messages that the user could see according to the update process state:
Updating in progress
The update process is active in background. It will take approximately as a normal JIRA reindexation of the project, as you know, it will depend on the server architecture and the issues of that project, as well as the number of custom fields.
Waiting for update
The update process is in the queue.
The update process has failed, you may contact to your JIRA Administrator.
It's important to realize that our priority is user experience. According to that, the update process is launched automatically in background and you may continue working normally but keep in mind that the information in the custom fields may not be correct until this process has been finished.
To keep JIRA fluidity, there must be three background update process at the same time. If more updating process are needed, Profields will queue them. Then, when an active process ends, one of the queue will be activated.