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How can I work on a Subversion branch in a different repository?

Posted on 2010-08-25
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Last Modified: 2013-11-25
I would like to make a fairly major change to a publicly-available project tracked by Subversion, but I do not have commit privileges on the public repository.  I do, however, have my own Subversion repository so I would like to store my version of the project there.  The important functionality I want to retain is the ability to merge changes to the public trunk to the "branch" stored on my repository.  What is the best way to do this?  If possible, I would like to do this with the TortoiseSVN client.

I have tried to "Merge a range of revisions" in TortoiseSVN while leaving the revision range blank, but this generates conflicts even on files that I have not changed (but have been changed in the public trunk).
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Question by:bjp1662
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Expert Comment

by:jaredboone
ID: 33633967
This is not possible using TortoiseSVN. There are perl and python versions of a script called svn-merge-repos.
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Expert Comment

by:sailingbye
ID: 33638114
I believe svn externals will do what you want [1].  It allows you to define an 'external' repository for part of your working copy, such that when you update your working copy, updates are automagically pulled from all repositories.

I'm sorry, but I don't have any experience of using it with TortoiseSVN.

[1] http://svnbook.red-bean.com/en/1.0/ch07s03.html
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Author Comment

by:bjp1662
ID: 33639203
sailingbye, that is definitely a useful feature, but I don't think it solves the problem of of being able to merge changes in a remote repository with changes in a local repository.

jaredboone, I was afraid of that.  I'm looking into the script you suggest, but so far it seems like it's intended more as a one-time-use way to integrate two disparate projects into one repository rather than a way to effectively merge different versions of the same files from different repositories -- am I misreading the description?

I'm surprised a tool for doing this sort of thing isn't more prominent; it seems like anyone who wants to make their own changes to an open-source project (which they don't have commit access to) while keeping up with changes to the public open-source project would need something like this.
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Accepted Solution

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sailingbye earned 1600 total points
ID: 33645590
>but I don't think it solves the problem of of being
>able to merge changes in a remote repository
>with changes in a local repository.

I'm confident it does. When you perform an update, Subversion will merge changes from the repository with local changes if possible, in exactly the same way that it does with a repository that you do have permission to commit to. If a merge is not possible then a conflict occurs and you resolve it in exactly the same way.

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