Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Install Subversion 1.6 in Ubuntu 13.04

As you know, we can't perform svn commands on a Subversion 1.6 working copy using a Subversion 1.7 client. But in Ubuntu 13.04, the default Subversion package is 1.7. 1.7 is certainly far superior in comparison to 1.6 in terms of speed. But I need to be able to do svn operations on 1.6 working copies. So, I needed two versions of subversion client. The only way I found for this is the following. This might help you too.

We need Java for this to work. So, if you do not have Java installed, install it before continuing.

First, install svnkit.. This installs several packages that is needed for svnkit. In 13.04, we get the svnkit 1.7.5 which comes with support for Subversion 1.7.

sudo apt-get install svnkit

Now, uninstall svnkit and libsvnkit-java packages. We do not need the 1.7.5 version of these since we need Subversion 1.6 support.

sudo apt-get remove svnkit libsvnkit-java

Now, go to a Ubuntu mirror site. I have used the Ubuntu mirror site for Sri Lanka.

There, download, and install the following two packages.


You can install these by using the command "sudo dpkg -i *deb" command or simply double-clicking in these.

Now, you have SVN 1.6 installed. To run, use the command jsvn instead of svn.

jsvn --version

You might need to set the JAVA_HOME variable if jsvn is failing to locate java. If so, open up /usr/bin/jsvn (which is a simple bash script), and edit the JAVA_HOME variable there accordingly.

Good luck!


  1. Awesome! I've been trying to install v1.6 for a long time with no success, and your solution works like a charm, many thanks.

  2. You are welcome! Note that this is a Java based subversion client. So, you might face memory related performance issues if you are trying with a much larger code base.

  3. Also I added
    sudo apt-mark hold svnkit libsvnkit-java
    to prevent of updating these packages to latest versions