Installation & setup#

  1. Download the appropriate version for your system (32- or 64-bit) and install it. You may to reboot to complete the installation, do so if required.

  2. Optionally, but highly recommended: download and install WinMerge, a convenient GUI tool to compare and merge files.

  3. Start Pageant (the SSH agent that comes with PuTTY) and load your private key for authentication on the VSC cluster.

Checking out a project from a VSC cluster repository#

  1. Open Windows Explorer (by e.g., the Windows-E shortcut, or from the Start Menu) and navigate to the directory where you would like to check out your project that is in the VSC cluster repository.

  2. Right-click in this directory, you will notice ‘SVN Checkout…’ in the context menu, select it to open the ‘Checkout’ dialog.

  3. In the ‘URL of repository’ field, type the following line, replacing userid by your VSC user ID, and ‘300’ with ‘301’, ‘302’,… as required (e.g., for user ID ‘vsc30257’, replace ‘300’ by ‘302’). For svn.login.node, substitute the appropriate login node for the cluster the repository is on.

  4. Check whether the suggested default location for the project suits you, i.e., the ‘Checkout directory’ field, if not, modify it.

  5. Click ‘OK’ to proceed with the check out.

You now have a working copy of your project on your desktop and can continue to develop locally.

Work cycle#

Suppose the file ‘simulation.c’ is added, and ‘readme.txt’ is added. The ‘simulation directory will now look as follows:


Files that were changed are marked with a red exclamation mark, while those marked in green were unchanged. Files without a mark such as ‘readme.txt’ have not been placed under version control yet. The latter can be added to the repository by right-clicking on it, and choosing ‘TortoiseSVN’ and then ‘Add…’ from the context menu. Such files will be marked with a blue ‘+’ sign until the project is committed.

By right-clicking in the project’s directory, you will see context menu items ‘SVN Update’ and ‘SVN Commit…’. These have exactly the same semantics as their command line counterparts introduced above. The ‘TortoiseSVN’ menu item expands into even more command that are familiar, with the notable exception of ‘Check for modifications’, which is in fact equivalent to ‘svn status’.


Right-clicking in the directory and choosing ‘SVN Commit…’ will bring up a dialog to enter a comment and, if necessary, include or exclude files from the operation.



When during an update a conflict that can not be resolved automatically is detected, TortoiseSVN behaves slightly different from the command line client. Rather than requiring you to resolve the conflict immediately, it creates a number of extra files. Suppose the repository was at revision 12, and a conflict was detected in ‘simulation.c’, then it will create:

  • ‘simulation.c’: this file is similar to the one subversion would open for you when you choose to edit a conflict via the command line client (this file is marked with a warning sign);

  • ‘simulation.c.mine’: this is the file in your working copy, i.e., the one that contains changes that were not committed yet;

  • ‘simulation.c.r12’: the last revision in the repository; and

  • ‘simulation.c.r11’: the previous revision in the repository.

You have now two options to resolve the conflict.

  1. Edit ‘simulation.c’, keeping those modification of either version that you need.

  2. Use WinMerge to compare ‘simulation.c.mine’ and ‘simulation.c.r12’ and resolve the conflicts in the GUI, saving the result as ‘simulation.c’. When two files are selected in Windows Explorer, they can be compared using WinMerge by right-clicking on either, and choosing ‘WinMerge’ from the context menu.


Once all conflicts have been resolved, commit your changes.


Tagging can be done conveniently by right-clicking in Windows Explorer and selecting ‘TortoiseSVN’ and then ‘Branch/tag…’ from the context menu. After supplying the appropriate URL for the tag, e.g.,


you click ‘OK’.

Browsing the repository#

Sometimes it is convenient to browse a subversion repository. TortoiseSVN makes this easy, right-click in a directory in Windows Explorer, and select ‘TortoiseSVN’ and then ‘Repo-browser’ from the context menu.


Importing a local project into the VSC cluster repository#

As with the command line client, it is possible to import a local directory on your desktop system into your subversion repository on the VSC cluster . Let us assume that this directory is called ‘calculation’. Right-click on it in Windows Explorer, and choose ‘Subversion’ and then ‘Import…’ from the context menu. This will open the ‘Import’ dialog.


The repository’s URL would be (modify the user ID and directory appropriately):


TortoiseSVN will automatically create the ‘calculation’ and ‘trunk’ directory for you (it uses the ‘--parents’ option).

Creating directories such as ‘branches’ or ‘tags’ can be done using the repository browser. To invoke it, right-click in a directory in Windows Explorer and select ‘TortoiseSVN’ and then ‘Repo-browser’. Navigate to the appropriate project directory and create a new directory by right-clicking in the parent directory’s content view (right pane) and selecting ‘Create folder…’ from the context menu.