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Installing Subversion and Clients

Installing Subversion


The math Linux cluster machines should generally have a recent version of Subversion installed. If you're running a system similar to ours, please feel free to use our packages from

Most other Linux distributions will have some version of Subversion packaged and available for installation with apt-get, yum install, or whatever you prefer.

Mac OS X

For Macs, you have two routes. You can install from source using MacPorts or Fink, or you can download and install a prebuilt package.


For Windows, TortoiseSVN is the favorite choice. In addition to its GUI features, TortoiseSVN includes all the underlying code necessary to operate as a Subversion client.

Subversion Clients

Command-Line Clients

The command-line Subversion program, svn is the main client for the Subversion system. The svn program provides help when you type svn help. svn help subcommand will give you help with a particular subcommand.

GUI Clients

There are GUI Subversion clients available for all major operating systems. For Windows, the primary client is TortoiseSVN, which integrates Subversion commands into the Windows Explorer interface.

For Mac OS X, there are a number of clients available, but no clear favorite has emerged. svnX (free) and ZigVersion (pay) might be worth a try.

There are also a number of cross-platform clients, such as RapidSVN (installed on the math cluster), SmartSVN, and eSVN, as well as clients that are integrated into or available as plugins for IDEs such as Subclipse for Eclipse.

Other Clients

The psvn mode for Emacs allows you to use Emacs's standard version-control commands to work with Subversion working copies. There are also tools for vim and other editors available. Google is your friend.