Subversion “obliterate”

Apparently, Subversion is adding support for an “obliterate” command that can delete a file completely, including from the revision history.

I once had to do this because I accidentally added a license file that needed to be kept private into the repository. I had quickly deleted the license file, but it was still available in the revision history.

Since Subversion does not provide a command to completely remove a file from the repository (such as Perforce with “p4 obliterate”), I had to do a dump of the Subversion repository (using rsync and svnadmin dump), then filter out the file (svndumpfilter), and then import the repository into SourceForge again using the migration function (I don’t know how this works on other repositories outside of SourceForge, and SourceForge has changed a lot too during the last two years).

I just wanted to give people some starting points by mentioning svnadmin dump and svndumpfilter.


About Mathias

Software development engineer. Principal developer of DrJava. Recent Ph.D. graduate from the Department of Computer Science at Rice University.
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