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 Forum index » House Training » HOWTO ( Solutions )
How to make TOR Browser Bundle work as root
Moderators: Flash, Ian, JohnMurga
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Cryrogenica

Joined: 06 Dec 2012
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Fri 07 Dec 2012, 00:33    Post subject:  How to make TOR Browser Bundle work as root
Subject description: TOR--run the browser bundle as root!
 

I found a way to make the latest Tor Browser Bundles work with versions of puppy that use root as the default user (I used Precise 5.4.2), that is easy and straightforward:

Download the appropriate (32 or 64 bit) Tor Browser Bundle from the Tor Project website
https://www.torproject.org/download/download-easy.html.en
Extract the files to whatever directory you want.
Open the "tor-browser_en-US" directory, then right click on "start-tor-browser" and select "open as text". Scroll down until you find this piece of error output code:

if [ "`id -u`" -eq 0 ]; then
complain "The Tor Browser Bundle should not be run as root. Exiting."
exit 1
fi


Delete the above code, then save your changes to the file. Now execute the file as root (just left click). For me, this simple change allows Tor to be run as root without any problems. Try it and see if it works for you.

I've been banging my head against the wall for ages trying to figure out how to download and use the most up to date versions of TOR privacy/anonymity software with my various versions of Puppy over the years. It seemed that as soon as someone posted a .pet they'd made of the latest TOR package, TOR issued some dire warning that everyone needed to upgrade NOW to the different version to avoid newly discovered security flaws.

Well, I was invariably disappointed when my newly download GNU/Linux TOR browser bundles (they work with ALL linux distro's....simply unpack and run!) said "you shouldn't be running as root...exiting". My subsequent compilation efforts of the TOR source code using the .devx sfs's on earlier versions of Puppy always ran into a quagmire of dependencies that also needed compiling--a never ending rabbit hole of confusing layers of dependencies.

When that failed, I researched how to create/login as different users in Puppy (Fido, Spot) and tried downloading the TOR browser bundles and running them as Fido or Spot, but there were always errors that prevented Vidalia from communicating with TOR because some files had permissions that were set when the file was download through the root user etc...ad naseum.

Basically, never ending obstacles to what should have been a simple fix. Little did I know, it actually was.
So finally, I just opened up the "start-tor-browser" file inside the "tor-browser_en-US" directory in a text editor and sat down and read all of the error messages and the logic behind them. What I discovered was this:

if [ "`id -u`" -eq 0 ]; then
complain "The Tor Browser Bundle should not be run as root. Exiting."
exit 1
fi


What it's saying is this: "if the user id (id -u) equals 0 (0=root), then send this nasty message and exit the program."

I thought, "well, they say the Tor Browser Bundle SHOULD NOT be run as root, not that it WILL NOT RUN as root...what if I just delete this line of code and try executing the file again?"

WALLAH! Tor initialized, Vidalia opened and the secure firefox browser appeared. It was a seeming miracle.

I understand the desire of the Tor Project people to make Tor more accessible to everyone, but their supposedly user-freindly, no-set-up-required GNU/Linux browser bundle was severely biased against being used by the large community of Puppy linux users. Sure running as root can be dangerous, but if you're concerned about your privacy and booting from a live cd without saved sessions on an HD, running as root is very safe. They should display a warning about running as root, but then allow it to be overridden by simply checking a box that says "I understand the risks".

Try it and post your results!
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tlchost

Joined: 05 Aug 2007
Posts: 1721
Location: Baltimore, Maryland USA

PostPosted: Fri 07 Dec 2012, 09:58    Post subject: Re: How to make TOR Browser Bundle work as root
Subject description: TOR--run the browser bundle as root!
 

Cryrogenica wrote:
I found a way to make the latest Tor Browser Bundles work with versions of puppy that use root as the default user (I used Precise 5.4.2), that is easy and straightforward:
Try it and post your results!


Works great in Slacko 5.4 on a bootable USB drive....and since it's in /mnt/home does not take up space in the save file.

Now, it would be great to be able to do SSH over TOR ....

Thanks

Thom
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anikin

Joined: 10 May 2012
Posts: 505

PostPosted: Fri 07 Dec 2012, 20:52    Post subject:  

Runs just fine on Dpup Exprimo 5.X.3.4.12.
Not without a warning, though . . .
But the tonality of the warning is amicable and permissive, I should say.
Thank you, Cryrogenica.
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amigo

Joined: 02 Apr 2007
Posts: 2257

PostPosted: Sat 08 Dec 2012, 03:24    Post subject:  

Never trust the advice of someone who says: WALLAH
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greengeek

Joined: 20 Jul 2010
Posts: 2594
Location: New Zealand

PostPosted: Sat 08 Dec 2012, 05:42    Post subject: Re: How to make TOR Browser Bundle work as root
Subject description: TOR--run the browser bundle as root!
 

Cryrogenica wrote:
Sure running as root can be dangerous, but if you're concerned about your privacy and booting from a live cd without saved sessions on an HD, running as root is very safe.

<chuckle>
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s243a

Joined: 02 Sep 2014
Posts: 30

PostPosted: Thu 16 Oct 2014, 19:15    Post subject:  

I'll do this but the warning is probably there for a reason. Is there a way to launch the process in a non-root session if you are using puppy in root mode?
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Flash
Official Dog Handler


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 11117
Location: Arizona USA

PostPosted: Thu 16 Oct 2014, 22:48    Post subject:  

Maybe as Spot?
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s243a

Joined: 02 Sep 2014
Posts: 30

PostPosted: Fri 17 Oct 2014, 18:59    Post subject:  

Flash wrote:
Maybe as Spot?

I just tried this.
then I typed:
Code:

sudo ./start-tor-browser

In then asks me for a pasword, which I don't know. I am using precise.

Since that failed I exited back to root. I used the command:
passwd

to change the pasword.

I then changed the user back to spot but this new password id not work with sudo.
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s243a

Joined: 02 Sep 2014
Posts: 30

PostPosted: Fri 17 Oct 2014, 19:47    Post subject:  

I figured out the problem was that I download and decompressed the file as root so spot didn't have permission to enter the director even after I moved it to root/spot

so I exited to root, changed the owner of the directory to spot, changed the user back to spot and it worked.
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s243a

Joined: 02 Sep 2014
Posts: 30

PostPosted: Yesterday, at 15:45    Post subject:  

For posterity, I think the command that I used to change the directory permission was:

Code:

chrown -r spot tor-browser_en-US


However, once I started tor after using that command I couldn't see what I typed because the terminal was tied up with running tor. I may have forgot to start tor in a new shell instance.

Last edited by s243a on Yesterday, at 19:13; edited 1 time in total
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disciple

Joined: 20 May 2006
Posts: 6447
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

PostPosted: Yesterday, at 17:39    Post subject:  

I guess that should be chown
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s243a

Joined: 02 Sep 2014
Posts: 30

PostPosted: Yesterday, at 19:14    Post subject:  

disciple wrote:
I guess that should be chown


Post edited.

thankyou Smile
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disciple

Joined: 20 May 2006
Posts: 6447
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

PostPosted: Yesterday, at 19:19    Post subject:  

It's still wrong Wink
_________________
DEATH TO SPREADSHEETS
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Classic Puppy quotes
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mikeb


Joined: 23 Nov 2006
Posts: 8342

PostPosted: Today, at 03:40    Post subject:  

The dumb answer is to use normal firefox and the tor daemon.... just needs the network settings altering....
http://www.proxomitron.ru/proxwiki/anonymity/setup/recommendations
that method may not use enough MB's though

mike
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