Searching for a past committed file in SVN

Recently a colleague asked me how to search for a file in SVN. Apparently someone on the team had deleted it and then committed the project. Unfortunately no one knew who or when and it was now causing a problem.

If you use TortoiseSVN there is a really great way to get a lot of information on your revisions, including searching for files.

Simply right-click on the project folder (not the repository folder), go to the TortoiseSVN menu and click Show Log.


This will bring up a log browser for every revision on the project. You can select a revision in the top pane, see the log messages in the middle pane and all files modified for that particular revision in the bottom pane.

What’s even better is on the top right is a search textbox.


My friend typed the name of the file in the textbox and voila! Any revision that had an action on that file showed up. They were able to easily find out exactly when the file was deleted and who deleted it.

<promotion author:self type:shameless>

I’ll be doing a quick intro on using SVN and TortoiseSVN at the IE .Net User’s Group in Riverside on July 8th. If you’ve ever wondered about using SVN or version control in general stop on by!


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