How do I migrate an SVN repository with history to a new Git repository? – Dev

The best answers to the question “How do I migrate an SVN repository with history to a new Git repository?” in the category Dev.


I read the Git manual, FAQ, Git – SVN crash course, etc. and they all explain this and that, but nowhere can you find a simple instruction like:

SVN repository in: svn://myserver/path/to/svn/repos

Git repository in: git://myserver/path/to/git/repos

git-do-the-magic-svn-import-with-history \
svn://myserver/path/to/svn/repos \

I don’t expect it to be that simple, and I don’t expect it to be a single command. But I do expect it not to try to explain anything – just to say what steps to take given this example.



$ git svn clone http://svn/repo/here/trunk

Git and SVN operate very differently. You need to learn Git, and if you want to track changes from SVN upstream, you need to learn git-svn. The git-svn main page has a good examples section:

$ git svn --help


Create a users file (i.e. users.txt) for mapping SVN users to Git:

user1 = First Last Name <[email protected]>
user2 = First Last Name <[email protected]>

You can use this one-liner to build a template from your existing SVN repository:

svn log -q | awk -F '|' '/^r/ {gsub(/ /, "", $2); sub(" $", "", $2); print $2" = "$2" <"$2">"}' | sort -u > users.txt

SVN will stop if it finds a missing SVN user, not in the file. But after that, you can update the file and pick up where you left off.

Now pull the SVN data from the repository:

git svn clone --stdlayout --no-metadata --authors-file=users.txt svn://hostname/path dest_dir-tmp

This command will create a new Git repository in dest_dir-tmp and start pulling the SVN repository. Note that the “–stdlayout” flag implies you have the common “trunk/, branches/, tags/” SVN layout. If your layout differs, become familiar with --tags, --branches, --trunk options (in general git svn help).

All common protocols are allowed: svn://, http://, https://. The URL should target the base repository, something like The URL string must not include /trunk, /tag or /branches.

Note that after executing this command it very often looks like the operation is “hanging/frozen”, and it’s quite normal that it can be stuck for a long time after initializing the new repository. Eventually, you will then see log messages which indicate that it’s migrating.

Also note that if you omit the --no-metadata flag, Git will append information about the corresponding SVN revision to the commit message (i.e. git-svn-id: svn://<branchname/trunk>@<RevisionNumber> <Repository UUID>)

If a user name is not found, update your users.txt file then:

cd dest_dir-tmp
git svn fetch

You might have to repeat that last command several times, if you have a large project until all of the Subversion commits have been fetched:

git svn fetch

When completed, Git will checkout the SVN trunk into a new branch. Any other branches are set up as remotes. You can view the other SVN branches with:

git branch -r

If you want to keep other remote branches in your repository, you want to create a local branch for each one manually. (Skip trunk/master.) If you don’t do this, the branches won’t get cloned in the final step.

git checkout -b local_branch remote_branch
# It's OK if local_branch and remote_branch are the same names

Tags are imported as branches. You have to create a local branch, make a tag and delete the branch to have them as tags in Git. To do it with tag “v1”:

git checkout -b tag_v1 remotes/tags/v1
git checkout master
git tag v1 tag_v1
git branch -D tag_v1

Clone your GIT-SVN repository into a clean Git repository:

git clone dest_dir-tmp dest_dir
rm -rf dest_dir-tmp
cd dest_dir

The local branches that you created earlier from remote branches will only have been copied as remote branches into the newly cloned repository. (Skip trunk/master.) For each branch you want to keep:

git checkout -b local_branch origin/remote_branch

Finally, remove the remote from your clean Git repository that points to the now-deleted temporary repository:

git remote rm origin


I used the svn2git script and works like a charm.


Cleanly Migrate Your Subversion Repository To a Git Repository. First you have to create a file that maps your Subversion commit author names to Git commiters, say ~/authors.txt:

jmaddox = Jon Maddox <[email protected]>
bigpappa = Brian Biggs <[email protected]>

Then you can download the Subversion data into a Git repository:

mkdir repo && cd repo
git svn init http://subversion/repo --no-metadata
git config svn.authorsfile ~/authors.txt
git svn fetch

If you’re on a Mac, you can get git-svn from MacPorts by installing git-core +svn.

If your subversion repository is on the same machine as your desired git repository,
then you can use this syntax for the init step, otherwise all the same:

git svn init file:///home/user/repoName --no-metadata