Proposal 164: Reporting the status of server votes
nickm at torproject.org
Fri May 22 07:00:42 UTC 2009
Title: Reporting the status of server votes
Author: Nick Mathewson
When a given node isn't listed in the directory, it isn't always easy
to tell why. This proposal suggest a quick-and-dirty way for
authorities to export not only how they voted, but why, and a way to
collate the information.
Right now, if you want to know the reason why your server was listed
a certain way in the Tor directory, the following steps are
- Look through your log for reports of what the authority said
when you tried to upload.
- Look at the consensus; see if you're listed.
- Wait a while, see if things get better.
- Download the votes from all the authorities, and see how they
voted. Try to figure out why.
- If you think they'll listen to you, ask some authority
operators to look you up in their mtbf files and logs to see
why they voted as they did.
This is far too hard.
We should add a new vote-like information-only document that
authorities serve on request. Call it a "vote info". It is
generated at the same time as a vote, but used only for
determining why a server voted as it did. It is served from
It differs from a vote in that:
* Its vote-status field is 'vote-info'.
* It includes routers that the authority would not include
in its vote.
For these, it includes an "omitted" line with an English
message explaining why they were omitted.
* For each router, it includes a line describing its WFU and
MTBF. The format is:
"stability <mtbf> up-since='date'"
"uptime <wfu> down-since='date'"
* It describes the WFU and MTBF thresholds it requires to
vote for a given router in various roles in the header.
The format is:
"flag-requirement <flag-name> <field> <op> <value>"
"flag-requirement Guard uptime > 80"
* It includes info on routers all of whose descriptors that
were uploaded but rejected over the past few hours. The
"r" lines for these are the same as for regular routers.
The other lines are omitted for these routers, and are
replaced with a single "rejected" line, explaining (in
English) why the router was rejected.
A status site (like Torweather or Torstatus or another
tool) can poll these files when they are generated, collate
the data, and make it available to server operators.
This document makes no provisions for caching these "vote
info" documents. If many people wind up fetching them
aggressively from the authorities, that would be bad.
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