Tor On Slackware (and Arch)

Do you have a need for a bit of privacy when online? Do you want to be a ninny moose? Well, Tor can help you with that.

From Tor’s website:

Individuals use Tor to keep websites from tracking them and their family members, or to connect to news sites, instant messaging services, or the like when these are blocked by their local Internet providers. Tor’s hidden services let users publish web sites and other services without needing to reveal the location of the site. Individuals also use Tor for socially sensitive communication: chat rooms and web forums for rape and abuse survivors, or people with illnesses.

Pay attention to what I’m going to say now… You do NOT have to be a software pirate, a hacktivist, or a foreign operative of some sort to need a bit of privacy. It’s perfectly legal and normal for you to want to protect your privacy when online. You don’t paint your name, address, and phone number on the side of your minivan, do you? You don’t exchange personal data with the clerk at the mall shoe store, do you? Do you tell every caller who calls you on your phone the numbers of the last 10 people you spoke with?

Of course, you don’t do those things. So, why should you do them on the Internet. Your web browser, in many cases, is not your ally in your ongoing effort to protect your privacy online. Often, it is giving away all kinds of interesting info about you with every link you click on. That’s just how it was designed. It’s not an evil conspiracy by the government to track your Internet movements. Although, it is possible for them to do that should they want to. When TCP/IP and the WWW first came about, browsers were required to do these things to function.

If you want a tool that can give you a bit more privacy when you need it, try Tor. Read HERE to understand a bit better how Tor works to protect your privacy. BE AWARE, though… Tor is not the do-all, be-all privacy tool. It has foibles. However, it’s better than having your rear area totally exposed out there in the breeze. Below I will briefly explain how I got Tor up and running in Slackware and Arch Linux using Firefox and Seamonkey browsers with the Foxy Proxy Basic addon.

Slackware

  1. Download the libevent SlackBuild from SlackBuilds.org.
  2. Build and install libevent from the SlackBuild.
  3. Download Tor for Slack 13.37 in x686 or x86_64 versions from Linux Packages | Slackers.it.
  4. Install the package using pkgtool.
  5. Start Tor at startx using Xfce’s Session Manager GUI front end. (or start Tor as a service in Slack – /etc/rc.d)
  6. Download and install the Foxy Proxy Basic addon for FF and Seamonkey.
  7. Add new proxy in Foxy Proxy – Socks v5, 127.0.0.1, port 9050.

That’s it. You can start the Tor service by typing “tor” in Run Program (Xfce) or at the command line in terminal. Once it’s running, you can use the Foxy Proxy button to turn on the Tor proxy. Once you’ve done that, you can test by using THIS site.

Arch

  1. Install Tor from Arch repos using Pacman.
  2. Add Tor to your daemons – (/etc/rc.conf, daemons: …tor…).
  3. Follow steps 6 and 7 above to configure FF and Seamonkey.

There you go. Simple in Arch, huh? This is wee bit of a project for a neophyte Linux user, but it’s not really that difficult. In Slackware, there are always different ways to do things. If you’re running Slackware, odds are you ain’t no neophyte. In Arch, it’s easier to install and set up. Plus, there’s a Tor section with step-by-step in the always EXCELLENT Arch Wiki to help you.

Enjoy your privacy. Remember, practice safe intercourse, er… I mean Internet.

Later… gotta’ go pirate* some vids now. Just kidding! ;)

~Eric

* The author in no way supports theft of copyrighted materials of any type. A creator’s output is his own to do with as he pleases. If he chooses to freely share, that’s wonderful. If he chooses to limit the sharing and protect his creations by using copyright or other laws, that’s his right also. Taking something that isn’t yours without permission is stealing. Can’t get much plainer than that.

+ Some further reading should you be interested

–> EFF’s Top 12 Ways to Protect Your Online Privacy from the Electronic Frontier Foundation

–> Copyright – Fair Usage

–> Internet Privacy


17 Comments on “Tor On Slackware (and Arch)”

  1. Josh Sabboth says:

    Very nice Eric!!!

    You can also launch your browser with Tor using this command:
    google-chrome –proxy-server=”socks://localhost:9050″

    replace google-chrome with your browser of choice.

    It is really slow for me but it does work.

    • Google-Chrome? Whazzat? Oh… that borg browser. “Vee have vays to harvest your personal data!” HA! :) Just kidding. I used to love Google, but those days are gone. I’m just another Yahoo nowadays. ;)

  2. Chekkizhar says:

    I agree with you. And since you are not using G+ now, I shared this link , there in my profile.

  3. Chekkizhar says:

    I can not able to do this. I installed libevent, tor and the proxy add-on.

    When I tried to start the tor from shell as root user, got the following,

    ” tor: error while loading shared libraries: libevent-1.4.so.2: cannot open shared object file: No such file or directory ”

    got same result as a normal user too.

    And I checked in ” https://torcheck.xenobite.eu/ ” . There,

    ” Your browser records referers [?] and sends them. The next visited site is able to track from which previous site you were coming from. You may want to disable referer recording. ” ?????

  4. Chekkizhar says:

    hey Slacker,

    yes I am running 13.37 only.

  5. Chekkizhar says:

    hmmm..ok.

  6. Sigh says:

    You’re right, it is simple.

    Getting something for free when the person could have made/wished to make money is not stealing. I could expect to be paid by everyone who reads this comment, that would give me zero moral rights to get paid.

    God I hate people who feel a need to preach whenever they mention something on the internet that could POSSIBLY be interpreted as condoning not following non-disclosure agreements (which is all licenses are.)

    • Here’s an example…

      If you were a professional writer who writes to support your family, and for commercial publication you recently wrote an 800 page mystery novel that took you nearly a year to finish, would you mind if I copied it in full and published it online under my own name? I’m thinking you probably would mind a bit. I just stole your years’ worth of creative output and basically took food out of your family’s mouths? That’s what copyright protection is all about. I wasn’t preaching. I feel strongly that someone’s creative output is their own property and should have legal safeguards against its theft. Now, if you wrote that book and put it on your blog as a free .pdf download, that would be different, wouldn’t it? If you create something, it should be your own choice how you want to share it with others… for free or for profit.

      Regards,

      ~Eric

      • Sigh says:

        It doesn’t matter what kind of sob story you want to spin. Copying isn’t theft. Copying does not remove the original.

        Making it more difficult for someone to sell a product is not a crime, regardless of the negative impacts to the seller.

      • Sigh says:

        How about a less heartless, and perhaps more easily digestable, example: Using an ad blocker on your blog and other websites is not theft, regardless of whether or not you have ads and could have made money but I viewed the content in a way that didn’t allow you to.

      • Blocking commercial content on MY system can hardly be compared to stealing my creative output for your own profit-making. We are not even in the same galaxy in this discussion, nevermind the same page.

        Let’s agree to disagree.

        Regards,

        ~Eric

      • Sigh says:

        Copyright infringement is not the same thing as fraudulent plagiarism for monetary gain.


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