Authentication – Subversion on command line will not remember credentials

I ran into this issue today on my command line SVN client.

Every time I ran the SVN command against my repository, it asks for my password. It does remember the username but doesn’t store the password.

There are a couple of settings to check in two different files:

  • .subversion/config
  • .subversion/servers

.subversion/config

The config file contains a setting which sets the password store you will be using. We need to disable all password stores and use an empty list, which is done by uncommenting (or adding) the next line

password-stores =

.subversion/servers

The servers file contains settings which allow you to save your passwords in general and to save the passwords in plaintext (please be careful when choosing this option!)

This file is divided in sections which are set with the [] brackets. In the [global] group you should uncomment (or add) the following lines:

store-passwords = yes
store-plaintext-passwords = yes
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See which SVN user editted which line

This is one quite cool trick where you can see which edit’s were done to a file by which user:

Issue the following command on a file which is checked in to SVN:

svn blame filename

Which will output the following syntax:

revision <tab> username <tab> line in filecontents

Please look at this example :

21672 jvisscher   declare namespace urn = "namespace:customer:v01";
21672 jvisscher   declare namespace urn1 ="namespace:customer:v01";
21673 mycolleague declare namespace urn2 = "namespace:v01";
21673 mycolleague declare namespace urn3 = "namespace:v01";
21674 mycolleague declare namespace urn4 = "namespace:v01";

Awesome! Now I can quickly see that my colleague was the cause of my failing namespace!

As a sidenote: I really like the function’s name, because most of the time, you’re looking to blame someone ;-)