As we all know, Ubuntu is one of the most stable and secure operating system around. We accept the fact that it is totally free from viruses/malware but still there are some things which need to be looked upon while using Ubuntu on a Public Network like CyberCafe’s, Offices, School/College Wifi etc. Most of the times, these places are governed by Surveillance personnel compromising your privacy and freedom of browsing. To solve this problem, we have for you Tor: The Onion Router.
Tor is free software and an open network that helps you defend against network surveillance that threatens personal freedom & privacy, confidential business activities and relationships, and state security known as traffic analysis. Tor is a network of virtual tunnels that allows people to improve their privacy and security on the World wide web. Tor provides the foundation for a range of applications that allow organizations and individuals to share information over public networks without compromising their privacy. With Tor, you will be free to browse anonymously without your ISP knowing what sites you are visiting. It can also help you bypass any blocks put up by your ISP on some particular websites as well.
How it Works :-
Tor protects a user by bouncing the communications around a distributed network of relays, it prevents somebody(may be Authorized personnel in case) watching a user’s Internet activity from learning sites being visited, and it prevents the sites from learning user’s physical location. The original IP is masked by passing it through special(Onion) routers, and hence it prevents Internet applications that are configured to send their traffic from compromising user’s privacy. Tor works with many existing applications, including web browsers, instant messaging clients, remote login, and other applications based on the TCP protocol.
Tor anonymizes the origin of your traffic, and it encrypts everything between you and the Tor network and everything inside the Tor network, but it can’t encrypt your traffic between the Tor network and its final destination.
1) Installing Tor :- Open the terminal and type
sudo gedit /etc/apt/sources.list
Add this line to the list, save the file and exit.
deb http://deb.torproject.org/torproject.org lucid main
(Use “lucid” both for Maverick and Lucid as of now)
Then add gpg keys for the package:
gpg –keyserver keys.gnupg.net –recv 886DDD89
gpg –export A3C4F0F979CAA22CDBA8F512EE8CBC9E886DDD89 | sudo apt-key add -
Now, update your sources and install Tor
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install tor tor-geoipdb
and its done.
We recommend you to use Firefox browser for browsing using Tor.
2) Installing Vidalia :-
Vidalia is a cross-platform controller GUI for the Tor software, built using the Qt framework. Vidalia runs on most platforms supported by Qt 4.3 or later, including Linux or other Unix variants using the X11 window system.
Open the terminal and type the following to install vidalia :-
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install vidalia
and you are good to go. Vidalia resides in Applications>Internet.
3) Installing tor-button :-
Open Firefox, click Tools> Addons and search for ‘torbutton’. Click to install and restart firefox.
You will see a small text in the right bottom corner of your screen .ie “Tor Enabled/Disabled”. Click on it to Enable/Disable Tor.
All done. Now you can configure Tor to your choice and start browsing without any worries at all
Tor-Browser Package :- The Tor-Browser Bundle lets you use Tor on Linux,Mac OSX and other OS’s without needing to install any software. It can run off a USB flash drive, comes with a pre-configured web browser, and is self-contained. So its totally upto you to use it or not.
For languages other than English, see this page. After the download, locate the download directory, right-click the file and extract it. Open the file and double click “start-tor-browser” script and run it.
Else, after the download, open the terminal and access that particular directory and type in this :-
tar xvzf tor-browser-gnu-linux-i686-1.0.15-dev-en-US.tar.gz
This will launch Vidalia and once that connects to Tor, it will launch Firefox.
Note:- While installing using the Ubuntu package repos, replace “lucid” by your Distribution name. Eg:- “karmic” for 9.10, “jaunty” for 9.04, “hardy” for 8.10 and so on.
-Now, for Tor-browser-bundle, please replace the directory names carefully if you download packages other than English language.
-Also, before using Tor, please read the warning page properly.
Queries regarding this post or anything about Ubuntu can be asked here.