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Import your project from Bitbucket Server

DETAILS: Tier: Free, Premium, Ultimate Offering:, Self-managed, GitLab Dedicated

  • Ability to re-import projects introduced in GitLab 15.9.
  • Ability to import reviewers introduced in GitLab 16.3.
  • Support for pull request approval imports introduced in GitLab 16.7.

Import your projects from Bitbucket Server to GitLab.

NOTE: This process is different than importing from Bitbucket Cloud.


  • Requirement for Maintainer role instead of Developer role introduced in GitLab 16.0 and backported to GitLab 15.11.1 and GitLab 15.10.5.
  • Bitbucket Server import source must be enabled. If not enabled, ask your GitLab administrator to enable it. The Bitbucket Server import source is enabled by default on
  • At least the Maintainer role on the destination group to import to.
  • Bitbucket Server authentication token with administrator access. Without administrator access, some data is not imported.

Import repositories

To import your Bitbucket repositories:

  1. Sign in to GitLab.
  2. On the left sidebar, at the top, select Create new ({plus}) and New project/repository.
  3. Select Import project.
  4. Select Bitbucket Server.
  5. Log in to Bitbucket and grant GitLab access to your Bitbucket account.
  6. Select the projects to import, or import all projects. You can filter projects by name and select the namespace for which to import each project.
  7. To import a project:
    • For the first time: Select Import.
    • Again: Select Re-import. Specify a new name and select Re-import again. Re-importing creates a new copy of the source project.

Items that are imported

  • Repository description
  • Git repository data
  • Pull requests
  • Pull request comments, user mentions, reviewers, approvals, and merge events
  • LFS objects

When importing, repository public access is retained. If a repository is private in Bitbucket, it's created as private in GitLab as well.

When closed or merged pull requests are imported, commit SHAs that do not exist in the repository are fetched from the Bitbucket server to make sure pull requests have commits tied to them:

  • Source commit SHAs are saved with references in the format refs/merge-requests/<iid>/head.
  • Target commit SHAs are saved with references in the format refs/keep-around/<SHA>.

If the source commit does not exist in the repository, a commit containing the SHA in the commit message is used instead.

Items that are not imported

The following items aren't imported:

  • Attachments in Markdown
  • Task lists
  • Emoji reactions

Items that are imported but changed

The following items are changed when they are imported:

  • GitLab doesn't allow comments on arbitrary lines of code. Any out-of-bounds Bitbucket comments are inserted as comments in the merge request.
  • Multiple threading levels are collapsed into one thread and quotes are added as part of the original comment.
  • Project filtering doesn't support fuzzy search. Only starts with or full match strings are supported.

User assignment

  • Importing approvals by email address or username introduced in GitLab 16.7.
  • Matching user mentions with GitLab users introduced in GitLab 16.8.

FLAG: On self-managed GitLab, matching user mentions with GitLab users is not available. To make it available per user, an administrator can enable the feature flag named bitbucket_server_import_stage_import_users. On and GitLab Dedicated, this feature is not available.

When issues and pull requests are importing, the importer tries to find the author's email address with a confirmed email address in the GitLab user database. If no such user is available, the project creator is set as the author. The importer appends a note in the comment to mark the original creator.

@mentions on pull request descriptions and notes are matched to user profiles on a Bitbucket Server by using the user's email address. If a user with the same email address is not found on GitLab, the @mention is made static. For a user to be matched, they must have a GitLab role that provides at least read access to the project.

If the project is public, GitLab only matches users who are invited to the project.

The importer creates any new namespaces (groups) if they don't exist. If the namespace is taken, the repository imports under the namespace of the user who started the import process.

The importer attempts to find:

  • Reviewers by their email address in the GitLab user database. If they don't exist in GitLab, they are not added as reviewers to a merge request.
  • Approvers by username or email. If they don't exist in GitLab, the approval is not added to a merge request.

User assignment by username

  • Introduced in GitLab 13.4 with a flag named bitbucket_server_user_mapping_by_username. Disabled by default.
  • Not recommended for production use.

FLAG: On self-managed GitLab and, by default this feature is not available. To make it available, an administrator can enable the feature flag named bitbucket_server_user_mapping_by_username. This feature is not ready for production use.

With this feature enabled, the importer tries to find a user in the GitLab user database with the author's:

  • username
  • slug
  • displayName

If no user matches these properties, the project creator is set as the author.



If the GUI-based import tool does not work, you can try to:

See the troubleshooting section for Bitbucket Cloud.

LFS objects not imported

If the project import completes but LFS objects can't be downloaded or cloned, you may be using a password or personal access token containing special characters. For more information, see this issue.

Import fails due to invalid/unresolved host address, or the import URL is blocked

If a project import fails with an error message such as Importing the project failed: Import url is blocked, even though the initial connection to the Bitbucket server succeeded, the Bitbucket server or a reverse proxy might not be configured correctly.

To troubleshoot this problem, use the Projects API to check for the newly-created project and locate the import_url value of the project.

This value indicates the URL provided by the Bitbucket server to use for the import. If this URL isn't publicly resolvable, you can get unresolvable address errors.

To fix this problem, ensure that the Bitbucket server is aware of any proxy servers because proxy servers can impact how Bitbucket constructs and uses URLs. For more information, see Atlassian's documentation.