About branches and branch policies

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Branch policies are an important part of the Git workflow and enable you to:

  • Isolate work in progress from the completed work in your main branch
  • Guarantee changes build before they get to main
  • Limit who can contribute to specific branches
  • Enforce who can create branches and the naming guidelines for the branches
  • Automatically include the right reviewers for every code change
  • Enforce best practices with required code reviewers

Adopt a Git branching strategy

There are a few critical branches in your repo that the team relies on always being in good shape, such as your main branch. Require pull requests to make any changes on these branches. Developers pushing changes directly to the protected branches will have their pushes rejected.

Keep your branch strategy simple by building your strategy from these three concepts:

  1. Use feature branches for all new features and bug fixes.
  2. Merge feature branches into the main branch using pull requests.
  3. Keep a high quality, up-to-date main branch.

A strategy that extends these concepts and avoids contradictions will result in a version control workflow for your team that is consistent and easy to follow.

Branching how to guides

Learn how to perform common tasks when working with branches.