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I'm having some problems getting passenger and svn to work in Redmine.


  • Ubuntu 12.04
  • Apache 2.2.22
  • PassengerRuby 1.9.1
  • Passenger 3.0.19


When I let Passenger do it's normal user switching and run as www-data, svn integration doesn't work. I have made sure to enter an absolute path to svn (/usr/bin/svn) in configuration.yml, but when I go to Administration->Settings->Repositories there is a red exclamation icon next to the command. Also, when I create a new project and try to create a repository I get this error message

SCM command is not available. Please check settings on the administration panel.

Now, if I instead let passenger run as my own user myusername svn works. This is not how it should be run though, as far as I know.

So my thinking is that is's a permission problem somewhere, but I just can't figure out where.

I have made sure that my self signed certificate is not causing problems by accepting it permanently while running svn as www-data like this:

sudo -u www-data -H svn --username mysvnusername info

This works correctly as far as I can see. It writes into /var/www/.subversion and when I run it again I'm not asked about the certificate.

Here is the relevant output of ps -ef:

root     16151     1  0 14:41 ?        00:00:00 /usr/sbin/apache2 -k start
root     16155 16151  0 14:41 ?        00:00:00 PassengerWatchdog
root     16158 16155  0 14:41 ?        00:00:02 PassengerHelperAgent
root     16160 16158  0 14:41 ?        00:00:00 Passenger spawn server
nobody   16165 16155  0 14:41 ?        00:00:00 PassengerLoggingAgent
www-data 16205     1  0 14:41 ?        00:00:04 Rack: /var/www/redmine
www-data 16391 16151  0 14:52 ?        00:00:01 /usr/sbin/apache2 -k start
www-data 16418 16151  0 14:53 ?        00:00:01 /usr/sbin/apache2 -k start
www-data 16427 16151  0 14:53 ?        00:00:01 /usr/sbin/apache2 -k start

To be clear here, the problem doesn't seem to be the actual connection to the svn server, but a problem with www-data running the actual svn command.

Where should I look? What should I do?

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up vote 0 down vote accepted

I solved this for now by adding a new system user and chown'ing the redmine application dir to the redmine user:

sudo adduser --system redmine  
sudo chown -R redmine:www-data /var/www/redmine  

Now the Redmine application is running as user redmine and svn works. Maybe this is also the best solution with regards to security?

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