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Tor Browser 7.0.4 in OpenBSD -current ports

395 words by gman999 written on 2017–08–27, last edit: 2017–09–03, tags: openbsd, ports, tbb, tor-browserPrevious post: Testing obfs4proxy on FreeBSD and OpenBSDNext post: A BSD-focused Tor Bridge Installfest


Earlier today, Tor Browser 7.0.4 was committed to OpenBSD’s -current ports.

On some levels it’s a non-spectacular event. We build the packages, test those packages, rebuild, retest and then Attila submits the diff to OpenBSD’s ports@ list. Sometimes I retest from source or packages on i386 before it gets into ports. Other times it’s tested after it gets into ports on the most recent snapshot.

It may be a boring routine to the outside world, occuring mostly on offline build servers and laptops. You can’t watch it on GitHub. But it’s also remarkably time-consuming. We fight with ancient hardware, the issues of multiple admins on the same server, not to mention the host of Mozilla zig-zags Attila maps and translates. The statues of Christopher Columbus and Lewis and Clark should be replaced with him. Each release can be a step into uncharted territory on many levels.

Some shiny donated hardware would help a lot, such as a couple of amd64 laptops from this century for testing and a contemporary 64-bit server for the builds. We are running off of our own stock of hardware and colocation donated by NYC*BUG and New York Internet.

Regardless, it remains TDP’s most basic activity. Tor Brower on the BSDs idled as a topic of chatter for years, since matching a critical anonymity tool with arguably the most secure open-source operating system was a logical progression. TB ported to OpenBSD put TDP on the map for some and on the radar for many others.

Besides hardware, another contribution we request is some feedback. We get loads of feedback from the OpenBSD ports list, but we have little idea of the usage. OpenBSD doesn’t keep statistics on package downloads or port installs. That’s where you come in. Let us know what you think.

Have you tried TB on OpenBSD -current? -stable? Would a maintained -stable release (via backporting) be of use? Have you tested the pluggable transport obfs4proxy as a client in the browser? Are there differences with the Windows or Linux TB releases that you notice?

We need to know. TDP’s OODA Loop is inadequate without that feedback. Notify us with a GitHub issue for the www site.

In the next few days, the TDP email address with PGP fingerprint will be posted.


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