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Can I trigger Bitbucket pipeline with pull request?

Normally the pipeline is triggered by push. There is the possibility to configure an 'on pull request' webhook, but how to connect it with a pipeline and disable or reconfigure the default 'Pipelines' webhook which triggers on push?

13 answers

1 accepted

7 votes
Answer accepted

Hi Brain, will it be triggered when a PR is merged/closed? 

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No; it will be triggered when a PR is created or updated (the source branch of the PR is pushed to).

When it is merged, the relevant pipelines on the target branch will run, if they are configured.

For example, I configured my pipelines to run tests on pull requests, and on the master branch. So when I merge a pull request to master, the tests run on master because of the configuration of master, not because of the configuration of the pull requests.

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good to know, thanks! 

I deploy PR's to an environment for integration tests, and looking for a way to clean up resources when a PR has gone... 

Like Jordi Bassaganya likes this

Hi Brian, there's any way to have the source and destination branch?

In branch' triggered pull requests I have the BITBUCKET_BRANCH that allow me to execute some script in order to run some code, but not in PR triggered pipelines.


Edit: with this line you can have the origin branch

export BRANCH=$(git branch | grep \* | cut -d ' ' -f2)


You can get the destination branch with the BITBUCKET_PR_DESTINATION_BRANCH variable

Thank you. This is _very_ important for me. I run a team of 3 developers and contractors that float in-and-out. We manage a dozen repos and quality-checking is a big issue for us. In addition to manual code-reviews, making sure all tests run as the PR is created or updated is one less step I need to take. 

Like Ashvin Narayanan likes this

@Brian Maissy In the documentation it reads "When it's triggered, we'll merge the destination branch into your working branch before it runs. If the merge fails we will stop the pipeline."

So is my understanding (below) correct:

  1. It won't get to the pipleline steps if the merge fails
  2. The Pull Request will be created regardless, but would have the usual warning sign next to the Merge button that informs about conflicts

If this is indeed the case, how do I execute steps on merge failure?

Is  after-script applicable here? 

Like Deepak Palanisamy likes this

Yes, I think your understanding is correct.

I'm not sure if the after-script will run or not in that case; I would just check and see.

Hi @Brian Maissy,  following the question about the BITBUCKET_PR_DESTINATION_BRANCH, there is a way to only run a pipeline specifying the destination branch?, I mean I want only to run the pipeline when there is a pull request to master.


thanks for your help

@Yonel Meza Avila Unfortunately the configuration in bitbucket-pipelines.yml only supports defining pipelines to run on pull requests based on the source branch.

If you want to run based on the destination branch, you could run on all branches (by specifying '**') and then check the BITBUCKET_PR_DESTINATION_BRANCH variable. If it isn't the destination branch you are interested in, then just finish the run immediately without running anything else. It's not great, since your list of pipelines runs will be polluted by a lot of empty runs, but it's a possible workaround.

Yeah, I would love this feature. The ideal workflow in my mind is to have the build pass as a requirement before merging the Pull Request. This keeps your deployment branches clean. After the PR is merged, the current feature set is nice to watch master/development branches and deploy them as changes are made (ie PRs are merged).

Actually, never mind that - a search reveals no current issue open on the subject, so I created one:

please vote it if you'd like this feature.


So the idea here is that instead of running your pipeline on every push you run it on every PR creation?

Is it not more convenient to build and test your code ASAP?

Update: I have funnelled the feedback about the expense of up to date deploys back to the Bitbucket Pipelines team.

yes, you are right, it is more convenient to test code ASAP but for a small private or open source project you quickly run out of your 50 minutes if you build on every push.

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Exactly @Jan Steinke. Developers on any team should be encouraged to push their branches to remote often, even before raising a PR, without worrying about consuming build minutes on unnecessary builds. They can add [skip ci] to commit messages, but will often forget to do so.

+1 for this feature, and exactly for the reasons stated above.

If someone has made a feature request, could you please post the link, so we can upvote it?

This. It's a bit short-sighted to assume that every team has enough money for 'unlimited' build minutes. 

Like Jeremy Stafford likes this

@Robert Massaioli (Atlassian) The points mentioned above are nice but I'd like it for my deploy section. I want everything in master to be deployed automatically. If I merge a PR, this is new code that I need deployed.

Like Kye Russell likes this

Build everything = $$. Plus there may be times where I only want to perform certain actions on a PR but not a typical feature branch push. For example, when Joe is checking in code to remote feature branch for the weekend, I don't necessarily want to burn build time running static code analysis on incomplete code, but on a PR, I absolutely do.

Like Kye Russell likes this

This sort of ignorance of financial factors is the same sort of thinking that causes Atlassian to think that it's appropriate to skyrocket their Jira seat price if I dare wish to enforce on Two Factor Authentication for my users.

I digress.

3 votes
Tom Bradshaw Atlassian Team Oct 13, 2016

Hi Marian,

At the moment it is not possible to trigger a pipeline on a pull request being created. However, pipelines run on the source branch will be displayed along with the pull request. If this is something you would like in the product please create a feature request at telling us what you'd like in this feature. 


Is it possible to rerun the pipeline of the merge when the pull-request is updated? We want to require at least two successful builds without failed builds. One for the last commit itself, and one for the potential merge.

What I've observed is that a change in the pull request will reset the "successful build counter" and will initiate a new build on the new commit (we have it setup to build on each commit), but will not trigger a new build on the potential merge. Is there currently a way to achieve that?



Nevermind, it seems that I mislabeled the branch that I want this to affect in my yml.

By changing:




It now works. I can't seem to make it work for a specific branch. Is there a special format?

I tried:


And none of these work.

Like Mzwandile Shandu likes this

I needed to trigger bitbucket pipeline for every created pull requests. As this is not available by default, I've managed to do it with a simple zapier zap, here is the tutorial :

Hello, based on documentation:


pull-requests - A special pipeline that only runs on pull requests initiated from within your repo. It merges the destination branch into your working branch before it runs. Pull requests from a forked repository don't trigger the pipeline. If the merge fails, the pipeline stops.

Is there any way so I can override merging my working branch with the destination branch ? I know it might be odd but I want to merge my working branch with a different branch than the destination.

Thank you.

I have a Jenkins pipeline to increase the version number of my artifacts automatically, what it does is:

  • Clones DEV branch
  • Changes the version number
  • push the changes(user is Jenkins)
  • creates a pull request on BitBucket repository
  • Once the pull request is approved, is merged.

My question is: Is there some way to indicate BitBucket if a Pull Request comes from a particular user (in this case Jenkins) to auto approve immediately or not request any approver to merge?

Is it possible to skip pipelines, or to prevent it to not failed when there is a merge conflict on the pull request

as a workaround, you can push an empty commit

We also want to have this feature and came up with a workaround outlined here:

It would be, but when we start having to pay for minutes to build, I think I will want this feature too. That way I could setup pipelines to only run tests on the master branch, and if anyone creates a pull request to the master branch, those also get run through pipelines. This might help save some minutes.

totally agree with you. Just for info, there is a cache feature now that should save some seconds on each pipeline run. 

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