Category Archives: Version Control System

Applying a GIT patch on your local SVN repository

Recently someone is helping me out on my Dune II – The Maker project. He works with GIT, a version control system like SVN. I don’t care about the differences between them at this point, except for one difference: The patch files.

So here is the situation: Someone works with GIT, makes some changes and creates a patch file out of them. He sends it to me so I can apply it to my SVN repository. In theory, I thought, this would work fine. Atleast I think the possibility to share patches among different versioning systems would be great, but there is a problem.

The GIT patch file format is different compared to a ‘normal unified diff’ patch, and therefor my SVN client (I use TortoiseSVN) does not understand the patch file and will not apply it. Side note: It does not mention it doesn’t understand it, it simply does nothing.

I found a sollution for this that works 90% of the time (for me). There is TortoiseGIT , which basically offers the same windows integration as TortoiseSVN. However, looking into the ToirtoiseGIT install dir (within the BIN sub-dir) you can find TortoiseMerge.

TortoiseMerge is used within TortoiseSVN for merging and applying (unified diff) patches. But the TortoiseMerge tool within TortoiseGIT understands GIT patch files.

So here is the blunt solution: Open up TortoiseMerge from TortoiseGIT. Open the GIT patch file with it and apply it on your checked-out SVN repository. TortoiseMerge will apply the patch 9 out of 10 times for you.

Sometimes you might encounter an error that TortoiseMerge cannot apply the patch due ‘missing lines’. In those cases I found myself reading the patch file itself and apply it by hand.

I hope this helped you out, if it did (or not) let me know.