Monitor tor with arm

nano /etc/apt/sources.list
and at the bottom, add (for Ubuntu 11.10):
deb oneiric main
You can now proceed to installation:
apt-get install tor tor-geoipdb

Editing the configuration file (torrc)

Installing Tor …

This way also starts it, but the default configuration is not to relay any traffic. We now need to configure is as a relay. The configuration file to edit is usually, as mentioned there, /etc/tor/torrc:
nano /etc/tor/torrc
In this file, the settings you’ll want to look at are:

  • uncomment Log notice file /var/log/tor/notices.log if you want to avoid a notice in ARM (see below for what ARM is)
  • uncomment ControlPort 9051 so that ARM can be used to control and monitor Tor
  • uncomment ORPort and (optionally but recommended, I guess) change its value to some random available port. That’s the port that will be used by other nodes to connect to yours
  • optionally uncomment Nickname and give a name to your node
  • set RelayBandwidthRate and RelayBandwidthBurst. Those are the maximum bandwidth that can be used by Tor constantly and in burst, respectively. For instance:
    RelayBandwidthRate 5000 KB  # Throttle traffic to 100KB/s (800Kbps)
    RelayBandwidthBurst 7000 KB # But allow bursts up to 200KB/s (1600Kbps)

    Beware those values are in Bytes, not bits.

  • if you have a traffic quota (and don’t want to blow it), you’ll want to configure AccountingMax and AccountingStart
  • optionally, you can put your name and (spam protected) e-mail, or even your GPG fingerprint, in ContactInfo. According to the comments it can be used to contact you in case your node goes wild or something.
  • optionally, you can also configure DirPort to mirror directory information on this port.
  • finally, the most important part: choose whether you want to be just a relay or an exit node. To be just a relay, set:
    ExitPolicy reject *:*
    To be an exit node, you can either leave at is, or replace the default exit policy (in order to do the later, do read the instructions carefully). Note that being an exit can bring you trouble because there’s always a risk of abuse, so at least do check your country’s law, the law of your host’s country, and your host’s TOS. But I guess you’re already aware of that anyway.

Additionally, if you want to remotely use your node to enter the Tor network to surf yourself, well, I suppose it can be configured using SocksPort, SocksListenAddress, SocksPolicy accept and SocksPolicy reject, but I haven’t figured out how to do that yet :/

ARM: a terminal-friendly GUI


Last step, let’s install a nice piece of helper software called ARM (for  node-relay monitoring”), which is basically a nice console-based GUI to monitor and have some control over Tor. On Ubuntu 11.10 it’s as simple as:
apt-get install tor-arm

In order to use ARM, you’ll have to enable Tor control port first. You already entered it in the configuration file (if you followed the guide properly, at least), so we just need to apply the configuration:
/etc/init.d/tor reload

Now you can just type arm to launch ARM and view some neat information about your node, like the traffic graph, inbound and outbound nodes, etc.




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