Atlassian Bitbucket vs GitLab
On this page
Atlassian Bitbucket gives teams Git code management, but also one place to plan projects, collaborate on code, test and deploy. It is marketed in the SaaS form (Bitbucket Cloud) and in a self-managed version (Bitbucket Server), however they are not the same product. Bitbucket Server is simply a re-branding of Stash. The two products are completely different code bases, written in two different languages (Cloud in Python, Server in Java) and do not maintain feature parity. Because of separate codebases they each have a completely different API, making it much harder to integrate.
Bitbucket supports Mercurial or Git, but not SVN. GitLab does not support Mercurial or SVN.
GitLab is a single application for the complete DevOps lifecycle with built-in project management, source code managemetn, CI/CD, monitoring and more. Bitbucket only does source code managment. You would need to use Atlassian Jira to get project managment, and Bamboo for CI/CD and Atlassian does not provide a monitoring solution. Addditionally, GitLab Ultimate comes with robust built-in security capabilities such as SAST, DAST, Container Scanning, Dependency Scanning, and more. Bitbucket does not support these capabilities, and Atlassian does not have a product for them.
GitLab also offers a "prem" self-managed and "cloud" SaaS solution. GitLab runs the same exact code on it's SaaS platform that it offers to it's customers. This means customers can migrated from self-hosted to SaaS and back relatively easily and each solution maintains feature parity.
- Extending the native functionality of Bitbucket is done through plugins. Plugins are expensive to maintain, secure, and upgrade. In contrast, GitLab is open core and anyone can contribute changes directly to the codebase, which once merged would be automatically tested and maintained with every change.
- Evidence that Bitbucket Cloud and Bitbucket Server/Data Center are two different products and Atlassian is focused on the cloud one:
- From Atlassian themselves, Bitbucket Cloud and Bitbucket Server are different architectures (ie. code bases) and diverging in functionality. This is more or less spelled out in their Bitbucket Rebrand FAQ (updated Jan 2018)
- From a recent HackerNews article
Atlassian wants you to move to their cloud product, it's that simple. Server is a thing that makes their life harder and stops them from extracting maximum revenues from you so you can expect a soft but persistent push to switch to cloud which will get harder over time.
- Disparity between Bitbucket Server and Bitbucket Cloud for a top customer requested feature took Atlassian over 2 years to acknowledge. Customers found out the feature existed in Server but not Cloud once moving to Cloud. Still not resolved as of Q4 2018
- An analysis of Bitbucket Server new features per release and feature-to-maintenance ratio, per release since it was changed from Stash Server, shows a downward trend in innovation (Data derived from Atlassian Bitbucket Server Release Notes)
- Discussion from HackerNews article about Atlassian not allowing benchmarking
Atlassian has always forbidden to talk about the performance of their products in their ToS and in their previous EULA. We all know why, but we don’t talk about it.
- Bitbucket Cloud
- Free tier - $0 - Unlimited private repos, Jira Software integration, Projects Pipelines (50 build mins/month), 1GB/month limit on file storage
- Standard tier - $2/user/month (min $10/month) - Same as Free + 500 build mins/month + 5GB file storage/month
- Premium tier - $5/usr/month (min $25/month) - Standard + some advanced features + 1000 build mins/month + 10GB file storage/month
- Bitbucket Server / Data Center
- Server - starting $2k perpetual (25 users, ppu drops roughly every 2x previous tier), includes year maintenance, single server, unlimited priv+pub repos
- Data Center - $1800/yr (25 users , ppu drops roughly every 2x previous tier) includes annual maintenance, Server + HA, DR, mirroring, SAML 2.0
- Must buy Data Center if over 2k users.
Free CI/CD with shared or personal Runners
GitLab.com has shared Runners that allow you to use GitLab CI/CD completely free up to 2000 build minutes for private projects and unlimited for public projects. Alternatively, you can set up your own Runner for faster build processing, unlimited build minutes, or special requirements.
GitLab has built-in Continuous Integration/Continuous Delivery, for free, no need to install it separately. Use it to build, test, and deploy your website (GitLab Pages) or webapp. The job results are displayed on merge requests for easy access.
Heres a test
Internal projects in GitLab allow you to promote innersourcing of your internal repositories.
Commit graph and reporting tools
GitLab provides commit graphs and reporting tools about collaborators’ work.
GitLab.com is at 99.5% availability while we want to be above 99.95%. We’re hiring to improve this in the last two months of 2017 and in 2018.
The most comprehensive import feature set
GitLab can import projects and issues from more sources (GitHub, Bitbucket, Google Code, FogBugz, Gitea and from any git URL) than GitHub or any other VCS. We even have you covered for your move from SVN to Git with comprehensive guides and documentation.
Quickly set the status, assignee or milestone for multiple issues at the same time or easily filter them on any properties. See milestones and issues across projects.
Create and manage milestones at both the project and group levels, viewing all the issues for the milestone you’re currently working on, representing an Agile sprint or a release.
Keep your information secure with Confidential Issues. With GitLab, you can create confidential issues visible only for project members with Reporter access level or above.
Explicitly mark issues as related and track their status.
Move Issue to Another Project
You can move issues between projects in GitLab. All links, history and comments will be copied and the original issue will reference the newly moved issue. This makes working with multiple issue trackers much easier.
Mark Issue as Duplicate
Mark an issue as a duplicate of another issue, closing it.
GitLab provides a convenient way to change metadata of an issue or merge request without leaving the comment field with quick actions.
Rich Object Summary on Link Hover
View an information-rich summary by hovering over links to users, issues, merge requests, and other objects in GitLab.
Create GitLab Branch from Jira Development Panel
Create a GitLab branch from within the development panel of a JIRA issue.
Create GitLab Merge Request from Jira Development Panel
Create a GitLab merge request from within the development panel of a JIRA issue.
Project Issue Board
GitLab has Issue Boards, each list of an Issue Board is based on a label that exists in your issue tracker. The Issue Board will therefore match the state of your issue tracker in a user-friendly way.
Time Tracking in GitLab lets your team add estimates and record time spent on issues and merge requests.
Wiki based project documentation
A separate system for documentation called Wiki, is built right into each GitLab project. Every Wiki is a separate Git repository.
Create new branches from issues
In GitLab, you can quickly create a new branch from an issue on the issue tracker. It will include the issue number and title automatically, making it easy to track which branch belongs to which issue.
Allow edits from upstream maintainers in a fork
When a user opens a merge request from a fork, they are given the option to allow upstream maintainers to collaborate with them on the source branch. This allows the maintainers of the upstream project to make small fixes or rebase branches before merging, reducing the back and forth of accepting community contributions.
Application performance monitoring
GitLab collects and displays performance metrics for deployed apps, leveraging Prometheus. Developers can determine the impact of a merge and keep an eye on their production systems, without leaving GitLab.
Application performance alerts
GitLab allows engineers to seamlessly create service level indicator alerts and be notified of any desired events, all within the same workflow where they write their code.
GitLab server monitoring
GitLab comes out of the box enabled for Prometheus monitoring with extensive instrumentation, making it easy to ensure your GitLab deployment is responsive and healthy.
GitLab provides a dashboard that lets teams measure the time it takes to go from planning to monitoring. GitLab can provide this data because it has all the tools built-in: from the idea, to the CI, to code review, to deploy to production.
Built-in Container Registry
GitLab Container Registry is a secure and private registry for Docker images. It allows for easy upload and download of images from GitLab CI. It is fully integrated with Git repository management.
Preview your changes with Review Apps
With GitLab CI/CD you can create a new environment for each one of your branches, speeding up your development process. Spin up dynamic environments for your merge requests with the ability to preview your branch in a live environment.
New features every month
GitLab is updated with new features and improvements every month on the 22nd.
One integrated tool
Other tools require the integration of multiple 3rd party tools to complete the software development lifecycle. GitLab has a completely integrated solution that covers the entire development lifecycle.
Highly Available setups
For mission critical releases, you cannot afford downtime. Split your app servers, database, etc., into multiple instances and work in read-only mode during backups.
Both GitLab.com and GitLab Self-manages support IPv6.
AD / LDAP integration
Sync groups, manage SSH-keys, manage permissions, authentication and more. You can manage an entire GitLab instance through the LDAP / AD integration.
Multiple LDAP / AD server support
Link multiple LDAP servers to GitLab for authentication and authorization
Multiple approvals in code review
In GitLab, to ensure strict code review, you can require a specific number of approvals on a merge request by different users before being able to merge it. You can undo an approval by removing it after the fact.
Approval rules for code review
Make sure the right people review merge requests with approval rules by specifying lists of eligible approvers and minimum number of approvals for each. This makes it easy to request review from different teams like Engineering, UX and Product.
Access to and ability to modify source code
GitLab Enterprise Edition is publicly readable, meaning you can scan or modify the code to meet your security and development needs. The code used by most other providers is proprietary, meaning you cannot edit or view the source code.
A comprehensive API
GitLab provides APIs for most features, allowing developers to create deeper integrations with the product.
Search files with fuzzy file finder
GitLab provides a way to search a file in your repository in one keystroke.
Advanced Global Search
Leverage Elasticsearch for faster, more advanced code search across your entire GitLab instance.
Advanced Syntax Search
Use advanced queries for more targeted search results.
Fast-forward merge with option to rebase
With this setting at the project level, you can ensure that no merge commits are created and all merges are fast-forwarded. When a fast-forward merge is not possible, the user is given the option to rebase.
Remote repository push mirroring
Mirror a repository from your local server to elsewhere. Push mirroring is supported via HTTP and SSH using password authentication, and using public-key authentication with SSH.
Remote repository pull mirroring
Mirror a repository from a remote Git server to your local server, making it easy to keep local forks and replicas up to date.
When a project requires multiple sign-offs, GitLab Enterprise Edition enables you to make sure every merge request is approved by one or more people. Merge request approvals allow you to set the number of necessary approvals and predefine a list of approvers that will need to approve every merge request in a project, and in-turn improve your code’s quality.
Fail over in minutes to another data-center.
Granular user roles and flexible permissions
Manage access and permissions with five different user roles and settings for external users. Set permissions according to people’s role, rather than either read or write access to a repository. Don’t share the source code with people that only need access to the issue tracker.
Organize your repository into private, internal, or public projects.
Create merge requests and @mention team members to review and safely merge your changes.
Reject unsigned commits
GitLab Enterprise Edition Premium allows you to enforce GPG signatures by rejecting unsigned commits.
Verify that a push only contains commits by the same user performing the push.
Based on Git, a distributed VCS
Git, on which GitLab is built, is fully distributed. Every user has a complete copy of the repository, allowing for much faster access to history, easier branching and an overall better experience.
Granular permissions for branches you want to protect.
Contribute to projects faster by using the Web IDE to avoid context switching in your local development environment. The Web IDE is integrated with merge requests and GitLab CI so that you can resolve feedback, fix failing tests and preview changes live with client side evaluation without leaving the Web IDE.
Web Terminal for Web IDE
Interact with your code in a Web Terminal in the Web IDE to inspect API responses, experiment in a REPL, or compile your code.
Store and share code snippets to engage in a conversation about that piece of code. You can embed snippets on any blog or website using a single line of code.
Inline commenting and discussion resolution
Code or text review is faster and more effective with inline comments in merge requests. Leave comments and resolve discussions on specific lines of code. In GitLab, Merge Request inline comments are interpreted as a discussion and can be left on any line, changed or unchanged. You can configure your project to only accept merge requests when all discussions are resolved.
Cherry-pick any commit in the UI by simply clicking the Cherry-Pick button in a merged merge request or a specific commit.
View a list of the latest commits, merges, comments, and team members on your project.
GPG Signed Commits
Sign commits and prove that a commit was performed by a certain user.
Subgroups: groups within groups
Create groups within groups to easily manage large numbers of people and projects.
Object storage for LFS
LFS files can be stored on Object Storage (Amazon S3)
Globally distributed cloning with GitLab Geo
When development teams are spread across two or more geographical locations, but their GitLab instance is in a single location, fetching and cloning large repositories can take a long time. Built for distributed teams, GitLab Geo allows for read-only mirrors of your GitLab instance, reducing the time it takes to clone and fetch large repos and improving your collaboration process.
Support for High Availability
To avoid downtime, GitLab Enterprise Edition Premium offers support for High Availability (HA). A Service Engineer will help you identify your specific HA needs and map out an architecture.
GitLab Premium ships with Deploy Boards offering a consolidated view of the current health and status of each CI/CD environment running on Kubernetes. The status of each pod of your latest deployment is displayed seamlessly within GitLab without the need to access Kubernetes.
You decide when you upgrade
GitLab releases a new version each month and lets you choose when to upgrade.
Easy upgrade process
Using our official Linux repositories or the official Docker image, upgrading GitLab is a breeze.
Automatically close issue(s) when a merge request is merged
With GitLab, you can use specific keywords to close one or more issues as soon as a merge request is merged.
Work in Progress merge requests (WIP)
Prevent merge requests from accidentally being accepted before they’re completely ready by marking them as Work In Progress (WIP). This gives you all the code review power of merge requests, while protecting unfinished work.
Custom Git Hooks
Leverage the power of Git Hooks and chain them together to fire off custom scripts when certain actions occur on the repository. If the commit is declined or an error occurs during the Git hook check, the error message of the hook will be present in GitLab’s UI. GitLab supports all types of hooks.
GitLab is built with a responsive-first design approach. Be it on a desktop, tablet or smartphone, GitLab is optimized to be viewed for the best result.
Community based, users can help shape the product
GitLab has open issue trackers for almost all of its operations. From GitLab itself to infrastructure and marketing, you can help shape the product.
Git LFS 2.0 support
Manage large files such as audio, video and graphics files with the help of Git LFS. Git LFS 2.0 file locking support helps large teams work with binary assets and is integrated with our native file locking feature.
Create projects with Git push
Push new projects to the desired location and a new private project will automatically be created.
SAML SSO for Groups
Connect a group in GitLab to a SAML identity provider to manage authentication.
View Kubernetes pod logs
Quickly and easily view the pod logs of an app deployed to Kubernetes.
Mercurial repository hosting
Hosts Mercurial DVCS repositories.
Enforced Two-factor Authentication (2FA)
Two-factor authentication secures your account by requiring a second confirmation, in addition to your password. That second step means your account stays secure even if your password is compromised. The ability to enforce 2FA provides further security by making sure all users are using it.
IP Whitelisting defines safe IP network addresses from which clients can access and interact with the repository server. This helps prevent unwanted third parties from accessing your account even if they have acquired a team member’s email address and password.
Git protocol v2 support
Git’s wire protocol defines how clones, fetches and pushes are communicated between the client and server. Git protocol v2 improves performance of fetch commands and enables future protocol improvements.
If you feel there are inaccurate statements in this comparison or a tool missing, please edit this page or propose edits by opening an issue. You can also send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with your suggested edits if you're unable to open an issue or edit this page.
We strive for technical accuracy and will review and update this post for inaccuracies as quickly as possible.