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A brief overview of Bitbucket



Last updated 27/07/2021

A brief overview of Bitbucket

Every software developer/programmer and CTO knows the importance of source control or revision control systems. An obvious perk is such systems allow you to securely store your code in a safe place. A source control system allows programmers to experiment with new features without worrying about damaging the existing program.

Bitbucket is the perfect collaborative revision control service for developer teams of all sizes from all around the world.

Bitbucket is a Git-based source code repository hosting service owned by Atlassian. Bitbucket offers both commercial plans and free accounts with an unlimited number of private repositories.

Key terms to know

Here are some important words and terms to know so you can find your way around Bitbucket. Some of these are terms borrowed from Git, others are specific to Bitbucket.


A branch represents an independent line of development. Branches serve as an abstraction for the edit/stage/commit process. You can think of them as a way to request a brand new working directory, staging area, and project history. New commits are recorded in the history for the current branch, which results in a fork in the history of the project.


Instead of using a single server-side repository to act as the “central” codebase, forking gives every developer a server-side repository. This means that each contributor has not one, but two Git repositories: a private local one and a public server-side one.


Git’s way of referring to the current snapshot. Internally, the git checkout command simply updates the HEAD to point to either the specified branch or commit. When it points to a branch, Git doesn't complain, but when you check out a commit, it switches into a “detached HEAD” state.


The default development branch. Whenever you create a git repository, a branch named "master" is created and becomes the active branch.


Bitbucket Pipelines is an integrated CI/CD service, built into Bitbucket. It allows you to automatically build, test, and even deploy your code, based on a configuration file in your repository. 


Bitbucket Pipes are shortcode chunks that you can drop into your pipeline to perform powerful actions. Pipes make it easier to build powerful, automated CI/CD workflows and get up and running quickly.


A project is a container for repositories. Projects make it easier for teams to focus on a goal, product, or process by organizing your repositories into projects. Projects can be either visible or hidden from public view.

Pull Request

Pull requests are a feature that makes it easier for developers to collaborate using Bitbucket. They provide a user-friendly web interface for discussing proposed changes before integrating them into the official project.

Working Tree

The tree of actual checked-out files, normally containing the contents of the HEAD commit's tree and any local changes you've made but haven't yet committed.

Bitbucket hosting options


Bitbucket Cloud is hosted on Atlassian’s servers and accessed via a URL. Bitbucket Cloud has an exclusive built-in CI/CD tool, Pipelines, that enables you to build, test, and deploy directly from within Bitbucket.


Bitbucket Server is hosted on-premise, in your environment. Bitbucket Server has strong integrations with Bamboo, our powerful CI/CD tool that allows you to completely automate your process. The license is perpetual.

Data Center

Bitbucket Data Center, our Enterprise Offering, looks like a single instance of Bitbucket Server to users but is hosted on a number of servers in a cluster in your environment. This provides important benefits over Bitbucket Server: 

  • Performance at scale
  • High Availability
  • Smart mirroring

Bitbucket Cloud

Bitbucket Cloud (previously known as Bitbucket) is written in Python using the Django web framework.

Bitbucket is mostly used for code and code review. Bitbucket supports the following features:

  • Pull requests with code review and comments
  • Bitbucket Pipelines, a continuous delivery service
  • 2 step verification and required two-step verification
  • IP whitelisting
  • Merge Checks
  • Code search (Alpha)
  • Git Large File Storage (LFS)
  • Documentation, including automatically rendered README files in a variety of Markdown-like file formats
  • Issue tracking
  • Wikis
  • Static sites hosted on Bitbucket Cloud: Static websites have the domain in their URL
  • Add-ons and integrations
  • REST APIs to build third-party applications which can use any development language
  • Snippets that allow developers to share code segments or files
  • Smart Mirroring

Bitbucket Server 

Bitbucket Server (formerly known as Stash) is a combination Git server and web interface product written in Java and built with Apache Maven. It allows users to do basic Git operations (such as reviewing or merging code, similar to GitHub) while controlling read and write access to the code. It also provides integration with other Atlassian tools.

Bitbucket Server is a commercial software product that can be licensed for running on-premises. Atlassian provides Bitbucket Server for free to open-source projects meeting certain criteria, and to organizations that are non-profit, non-government, non-academic, non-commercial, non-political, and secular. For academic and commercial customers, the full source code is available under a developer source license.


Bitbucket’s unique customizations and integrations make it easier and faster for you and your team to build better software. More than 9 Lakh teams and 50 Lakh developers around the globe are using Bitbuckettoday, therefore, you should too. Start coding like a professional using Bitbucketnow.

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