Modifying Contributions made by other developers


Zephyr contributors and collaborators are encouraged to assist as reviewers in pull requests, so that patches may be approved and merged to Zephyr’s main branch as part of the original pull requests. The authors of the pull requests are responsible for amending their original commits following the review process.

There are occasions, however, when a contributor might need to modify patches included in pull requests that are submitted by other Zephyr contributors. For instance, this is the case when:

  • a developer cherry-picks commits submitted by other contributors into their own pull requests in order to:

    • integrate useful content which is part of a stale pull request, or

    • get content merged to the project’s main branch as part of a larger patch

  • a developer pushes to a branch or pull request opened by another contributor in order to:

    • assist in updating pull requests in order to get the patches merged to the project’s main branch

    • drive stale pull requests to completion so they can be merged

Accepted policies

A developer who intends to cherry-pick and potentially modify patches sent by another contributor shall:

  • clarify in their pull request the reason for cherry-picking the patches, instead of assisting in getting the patches merged in their original pull request, and

  • invite the original author of the patches to their pull request review.

A developer who intends to force-push to a branch or pull request of another Zephyr contributor shall clarify in the pull request the reason for pushing and for modifying the existing patches (e.g. stating that it is done to drive the pull request review to completion, when the pull request author is not able to do so).


Developers should try to limit the above practice to pull requests identified as stale. Read about how to identify pull requests as stale in development processes and tools

If the original patches are substantially modified, the developer can either:

  • (preferably) reach out to the original author and request them to acknowledge that the modified patches may be merged while having the original sign-off line and author identity, or

  • submit the modified patches as their own work (i.e. with their own sign-off line and author identity). In this case, the developer shall identify in the commit message(s) the original source the submitted work is based on (mentioning, for example, the original PR number).


Contributors should uncheck the box “Allow Edits By Maintainers” to indicate that they do not wish their patches to be amended, inside their original branch or pull request, by other Zephyr developers.