JanusPA - A hardware Privacy Adapter using Tor

Jonathan Yu jonathan.i.yu at gmail.com
Tue Dec 23 16:18:26 UTC 2008


What about the Soekris boards?

The lowest end board, net4501, with a case is $173 USD.


133 Mhz CPU, 64 Mbyte SDRAM, 3 Ethernet, 2 Serial, CF socket, 1
Mini-PCI socket, 3.3V PCI connector.

The low processor speed may hinder encryption, but other than that, it
looks like it would make a pretty good replacement for Gumstix.
Probably not as small, though.

It might be nice to note that these boards have been in production for
a pretty long time and continue to be so. Also some firmwares like
DD-WRT support this hardware.



On Sun, Dec 21, 2008 at 8:14 AM, Kyle Williams <kyle.kwilliams at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hello Everyone,
> I've been working on a project for a couple of months now that I'm sure
> would be of interest to some of you.  The goal was to apply the same
> transparent model coderman and I  used with JanusVM and Tor VM into
> hardware.  I wanted something small that you could connect, power on, and
> use.  Literally plug-n-privacy.  After several weeks of searching the web
> looking at different hardware configuration, specs, etc, etc, I decided to
> go with Gumstix(.com).
> The privacy adapter is a ARM 400MHz Xscale CPU with 64MB RAM (@100MHz), 16MB
> of Flash memory for storage, and *TWO* 10/100 NICs.  It uses Linux for the
> OS.
> The first thought that many people get, including myself, have is that it is
> not powerful enough to run Tor.  Well, after 2 months of breaking this in,
> I'm very happy with the results.
> I ran this as a Tor server for about 4 days, and got a good baseline for how
> much data it can handle.  As a Tor server, it was pushing about 250KB/sec
> (125KB in, 125 KB out).
> As a Tor client, the best speed test I got was about 1.2MB/sec.  BTW, that
> was after about 45 minutes of "SIGNAL NEWNYM" and speedtest before I found a
> fast circuit.
> Here's the URL for what I've got so far.
> http://www.janusvm.com/goldy/JanusPA/index.html
> It is lacking all forms of documentation, and the source code needs to be
> cleaned up some.
> It does have a general description, the index of the soon to come
> documentation, openssl speed test benchmarks, pictures, and stats of when I
> tested it as a Tor server.
> After about two months of using it, I've never felt more secure and
> satisfied when using Tor.  This is a hardware router that routes your
> traffic through the Tor network, it's small, and is easy to use.  As for
> security, all TCP and DNS are routed through Tor, and everything else is
> dropped.  So all the nasty side-channel attacks that us hackers have been
> working on to leak your real IP address are rendered useless.
> But there is good news and bad news.
> The bad news:
> The manufacture (Gumstix.com) is "Phasing Out" this particular setup at the
> end of DECEMBER 2008!!  That's in 10 days!  Any orders after Dec. 31, 2008
> will have to be in bulk orders, which is 120 or more units.  Shitty.
>  Because of the short amount of time left to get this hardware, I've jumped
> the gun and chosen to notify the Tor community about this hardware before it
> is gone or out of a practical price range for most of us.
> The good news:
> I've been in communication with a very nice gentleman at gumstix who said
> "Gumstix is also working on a netDUO expansion board for Overo, although a
> release date has not been announced."  There is reasonable hope that there
> new motherboad product line (the Overo) will at some point have a dual NIC
> expansion board.
> So this is somewhat a conflicting situation.  I've spent months working on
> this awesome anonymity adpater, and it's about to be discontinued without
> knowing an exact date as to when the new line with have the capabilities to
> do what needs to be done.  ugh.  I'm very much looking forward to their new
> product line when a dual NIC expansion board is available, but I don't know
> when that'll be.  If anyone is interested in this, but cannot afford to buy
> hardware at the moment, please contact Don Anderson (don at gumstix.com)and
> encourage the idea of extending their phase out date or express and interest
> in a dual NIC expansion board for their new Overo product line.
> If anyone is interested in getting a hardware based Tor solution, you might
> want to consider buying a gumstix soon.
> You'll need the following.
> Connex 400mx Motherboard:
>  http://www.gumstix.com/store/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=27&products_id=136
> netDUO-mmc/SD expansion board:
>  http://gumstix.com/store/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=31&products_id=156
> 4.0v Power Adapter:
>  http://gumstix.com/store/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=28&products_id=148
> Screws and spacer kit:
>  http://gumstix.com/store/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=28&products_id=161
> This will run you $237.00 USD + shipping and handling.
> I would also *HIGHLY* recommend the following because flashing the device
> over the network is very, very risky and has resulted in me having to
> re-flash it through the serial port many, many times.
> Serial null-modem cable:
>  http://gumstix.com/store/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=28&products_id=85
> Serial port connector:
>  http://gumstix.com/store/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=31&products_id=106
> This will run you $32.00 USD.
> If anyone is seriously thinking about a good hardware based solution for
> Tor, I'd buy the gumstix now.  In fact, I just bought a couple more just in
> case mine breaks. I'll have the source code up withing a week, two tops  The
> FULL documentation will take about a bit longer to get done.
> Well, that's about it.  Feedback is welcome.
> Best Regards,
> Kyle
> PS.  Happy Holidays!

More information about the tor-dev mailing list