Tor is in the house!

Jul 18, 2014 at 4:05 PM

So I just got tests passing on Android and Windows for our Tor OP support!!!

This test is interesting because it shows something about how well Tor Hidden Services work.

In the test I have two Tor OPs running side by side, lets call them C and HS.

I tell HS to host a hidden service.

I test that a client talking through C can find and talk to the hidden service hosted by HS.

I then turn HS off completely, kill the process.

I restart it again and have it host the same hidden service.

I then tell the client using C to talk to the hidden service.

The first couple of attempts to connect will fail because C has cached the old descriptor for the hidden service and that descriptor became wrong when HS was turned off. But soon enough C finds the new descriptor and connects.

This means we have reasonably robust service when devices are moving around and their hidden services go on and off line.

This is incredibly exciting because it's so core to everything Thali wants to accomplish!!!

Now I'm going to go add in support for Mac and Linux, do a little clean up, send out a PR and once that is done I'll publicly announce the library's existence on the Tor, Guardian, Briar, etc. mailing lists for folks who are interested.



Jul 18, 2014 at 4:10 PM

Congrats! This is a big step forward. When you say “soon enough C find the new descriptor” – how long is soon enough? Seconds? Minutes?

Jul 18, 2014 at 4:31 PM
Typically seconds. I haven't measured it yet but to be on the safe side say "under a minute". At some point we'll have to do perf testing.

Ideally I would love Tor to be more network aware and to handle network handoffs seamlessly. This is something I'm talking to Michael Rogers from Briar about and if we can get to consensus then I'll send to a wider audience.