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Compiling Subversion for SUSE Linux

There is no official subversion binary distribution for SUSE Linux. However, it is pretty easy to compile subversion on your SUSE Linux server.

  1. If you have an older version of subversion which you wish to remove before installing the latest, do the following cleanup:
    • Run Yast2, go to Software->Software Management, search on “svn”, and remove it.
    • Manually delete any remnant subversion files by doing the following:
      rm -f /usr/local/lib/libsvn*
      rm -f /usr/local/lib/libapr*
      rm -f /usr/local/lib/libexpat*
      rm -f /usr/local/lib/libneon*
  2. Make sure that you have “autoconf” installed by running “rpm -qa | grep autoconf”. If you do not have autoconf installed, run Yast2, go to Software->Software Management, and search for “autoconf” to install it.
  3. Get the following source distributions or newer from subversion website: “subversion-1.6.2.tar.gz” and “subversion-deps-1.6.2.tar.gz”.
  4. Extract both archives into the same directory on your SUSE Linux server:
    gunzip *.gz
    tar -xvf subversion-1.6.2.tar
    tar -xvf subversion-deps-1.6.2.tar
    chown -R root:root subversion-1.6.2
    mv subversion-1.6.2 /opt

    You will end up with the subversion binaries in the “/opt/subversion-1.6.2” directory.

  5. Compile and install subversion with these commands:
    cd /opt/subversion-1.6.2
    sh ./
    ./configure --with-ssl
    make install

    You may see some errors when running “” or “configure”… just ignore them and hope that “make install” will work. (Some websites recommend using “checkinstall” instead of “make install” but my SUSE Linux server did not recognized “checkinstall”. “checkinstall” is supposed to generate an rpm package and update the rpm database appropriately to allow for easy uninstalls.)

  6. Double-check by running “man svn”. Then attempt to checkout a project with a command like:
    svn --username bob --password vila co http:/serverhost/repos/myproject

Security Warning: The subversion password will be stored in clear text in a file “~/.subversion/auth/svn.simple”. If you are on a shared system, you might wish to restrict the directory permissions to prevent others from viewing that file.

Whew! Hopefully that wasn’t so bad to follow.


  1. Reubenur Rahman


    I am facing the following error after giving the command ./configure –with-ssl

    checking for library containing RSA_new… not found
    configure: error: could not find library containing RSA_new
    configure failed for neon

    • Chanh

      I did see a lot of errors but don’t recall what they were. You can ignore the errors and try to run the “svn” command to see if it works.

  2. Reubenur Rahman

    Hey make install is not working because we have the above mentioned error in configure. So svn is not installed at all.

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