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Tutorial - Getting Started with Tor

museJun 19, 2018, 1:36:28 AM

This blog is an introduction to using Tor. I will write elsewhere why you might want to do this. For now, I will just assume that you want to do this. Below, I will demonstrate two methods for connecting to the Tor Network. Using Tor Browser(Method 1) and using Firefox(Method 2). You can choose which way you prefer.

You can check to see if your browser is connected to the Tor network at any time using the link:


Using Firefox without connecting to the Tor network, it will look something like this:

Firefox Browser not using the Tor Network

Method 1 - Tor Browser

The easiest way to connect to the network is with Tor Browser. You can install it using the link below.

Download Tor Browser

After installing Tor Browser and using Tor Browser to see if we are connected it should look something like this:

Tor Browser using the  Tor Network

Method 2 - Connecting to Tor with Firefox

If you wish to connect other services to Tor, or any browser of your choice, you can install Tor in the command line. The code I use will apply to Linux Debian systems(including Ubuntu and Mint), but will probably be quite similar for CentOs, OSX and Windows.

Step One - Install Tor

On a Debian based system you can install Tor command line with:

sudo apt install tor

Note, this will not give you the newest version of Tor, if there is interest, I will show you how to install the newest version. After installation, you should get an output something like below, if it fails, step two might fix it for you:

Red Arrow points to IP address and Port on which Tor is running

Step Two - Configure Tor Port

It's only necessary to Configure Tor more if running Tor didn't work for you in step one. This probably happened because you were already using the default port, probably with Tor Browser. To Configure Tor edit the file /etc/tor/torrc and change the number pointed to by the red arrow below:

Tor Port

Step Three - Edit Firefox Preferences

To get Firefox running through Tor, click Preferences -> Advanced -> Network and then edit the Connection Settings

Preferences -> Advanced -> Network -> Connection -> Settings

You will get a pop up, change the red boxes to what you see in the image below, but use the correct port number. This will probably be 9050 unless you changed it in Step Two. After changing your settings. Click OK.

Firefox Proxy Settings

Step Four - Check to see if Connected

If you have followed through the steps above, check the link again within Firefox to see if you are connected to the Tor Network. You should get something like the image below. Note, it is using the Tor Network, but it is also aware that you are not using the Tor Browser. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but Tor Browser does have other security settings by default, and some of your Firefox plugins might actually reveal your identity.

Firefox Browser using the Tor Network


This Tutorial has walked you through connecting to the Tor Network from either the Tor Browser or from Firefox. An additional Tutorial could show you how to run other things through the Tor Network from the Tor Node you have installed on your computer, this could potentially include setting up a browser on your mobile device that connects to your Tor Node. But this would take some extra configuration steps. Please let me know if you find this Tutorial interesting or helpful.

More In This Series

Tor - Basic Concepts
Tutorial - Tor: Using Services Through the Tor Network
Tutorial - Tor: Running an IPFS Node behind Tor
Tutorial - Tor: Connecting to Tor with an Android device
Tutorial - Tor and Nginx: Hosting your own Onion Website
Tutorial - How to not accidentally buy crack on the Darknet