Mountain Lion (OSX 10.8) SVN = MIA

Many developers out there are soon discovering that the upgrade to OSX 10.8 left us wondering where Subversion (SVN) went. Then again SVN is slowly fading into a legacy method of version control, but non the less the article is intended to help bring it back! This version of Apple OSX 10.8 and above doesn’t support it natively so we’ll need to re-introduce it manually. Some opinions may argue this was a sensible call on Apple’s part and that SVN is better served with Git, this was a huge nuisance to users like myself, sometimes need to use Coda for version tracking on certain projects. We’ll save the arguments for what deserves the title for best tracking and just note that on occasion you may come across a project or two still using SVN.

After consulting the great oracle (…google) revealed that one option is to install “Xcode” from the App Store. Once installed simply go to : Xcode > Preferences > Downloads > Command Line Tools > Install

However your draw my drop as mine did and wonder why we need to download 1.5GB of Command Line Tools to enable SVN support. Granted there are some very useful tools in this package that many of us developers may want, for the sake of this article there is an alternative.

install SVN without Xcode you need to download the “Command Lines Tools for Mountain Lions” as a separate install of only 116mb. You can download them from here :

Scroll down to the “Command Line Tools (OS X Mountain Lion) for Xcode – (latest date)

Once your download is finished simply run the install package and you are all finished. To verify SVN, open Terminal and enter :
svn --version

This command should return a version code. If you see copyright information and the SVN version 1.6.x you followed the process correctly.

I hope this saves someone some hunting (as well as 1.5GB valuable hard drive space) in the long run. Cheers!


Hello again all! I just wanted to hop back in and update this post in regards the the OS X Mavericks 10.7 apple update in which the SVN issue persists.

You’ll need to head over to OSX Apple Developer site and download the latest developer tools as described above.

Download and install the 116mb worth of tools. To verify installation open “Terminal” and type:
svn --version

If installed properly you should see something like:
$ svn --version
svn, version 1.6.18 (r1303927)
compiled Jun 15 2012, 19:07:58
Copyright (C) 2000-2009 CollabNet.
Subversion is open source software, see
This product includes software developed by CollabNet (http://www.Collab.Net/).
The following repository access (RA) modules are available:
* ra_neon : Module for accessing a repository via WebDAV protocol using Neon.
- handles 'http' scheme
- handles 'https' scheme
* ra_svn : Module for accessing a repository using the svn network protocol.
- handles 'svn' scheme
* ra_local : Module for accessing a repository on local disk.
- handles 'file' scheme

Update Xcode and please note the new path:

Good luck and don’t hesitate to write me if you need help or are having any issues setting up SVN support in OSX and I’ll see what I can do to help you get going… until the next version of OSX.

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