The right way to git clone a subversion repo...

Dan HorĂ¡k dan at
Wed Jan 8 13:38:14 UTC 2014

On Wed, 8 Jan 2014 08:27:42 -0500
"Darryl L. Pierce" <mcpierce at> wrote:

> I recently took over package maintenance for Audacity. So the first
> thing I want to do is clone their development tree, create a branch
> from the latest release and star tracking patches against it as
> needed. The Audacity team uses Subversion, while I prefer Git, so I
> attempted to use Git to clone their tree.
> The problem is that it's been HOURS and Git hasn't finished cloning
> the tree.
> The steps I took are:
> 1. mkdir Audacity; cd Audacity
> 2. git svn init --prefix=origin/ -b branches -t tags -T trunk
> 3. git svn fetch --log-window-size 10000
> It's the third step which is taking forever to complete. I left it to
> run overnight (10 hours) and it never finished. I paused it, came to
> work, resumed it and it's still going.
> Should this process really take this long? Or is there a faster, more
> efficient way to do this? I know that part of what'll make it take so
> long is the amount of history that has to be extracted from
> Subversion. But is that many hours normal or did I do something wrong?

in my experience it can take hours to clone large SVN repos (similar
to 13k revisions in audacity), I usually use
git svn clone --stdlayout <svn_url>
but it should be equivalent to your procedure

somewhere under .git you should see a file that changes during the
fetch phase (IIRC it lists the grabbed revisions), so you will know it
does something, also if svn:// url works, it should be faster than


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