[tor-dev] onion v2 deprecation plan?

Alec Muffett alec.muffett at gmail.com
Fri Apr 27 19:36:32 UTC 2018

On 27 April 2018 at 19:48, Damian Johnson <atagar at torproject.org> wrote:

> > OnionBalance requires STEM support for V3
> Hi Alec, would you mind clarifying what you need from Stem? As far as
> I'm aware Stem supports v3 onion service creation...
> ...
> I'm unaware of the ball being in my court on any v3 Onion Service
> stuff. If there's something I should have on my radar then please let
> me know!

Hi Damian!

That's awesome, and good to know - I first wrote that text a few months ago
(on the basis of David's comments in that ticket) and haven't revised it
since, so I am heartened to see progress.

However I am also not the best person to say what else will be needed,
because that would probably be Donncha re: the future of OnionBalance for

At the moment in OnionBalance the v2 Introduction Points of the
(predetermined) worker onions are passively scraped from the HSDir; the
descriptors are parsed, the IPs are blended and re-combined and re-signed
under the master onion key (eg: nytimes3xbfgragh) and then published back
to the HSDirs, with the result that NewYorkTimes-browsing clients end up
communicating with 1 of N possible "worker" daemons, thereby sharing the

My understanding - and please jump in, if I am wrong - is that the
synthesis of a v3 descriptor which blends the introduction points of
several independent v3 "worker" Tor daemons will be a more complex affair
than the existing process, because (?) the "worker" tor daemons will
somehow have to be more actively involved - apparently they may have to
sign the v3 Introduction Points themselves, though I am not sure how that
will work for a blended descriptor? Multiple/distinct signatures, perhaps?
The last opportunity I had to speak with anyone (re: this) was more than 1
year ago, so I am rusty, and I apologise if I have gotten some details

So: OnionBalance relies heavily upon Stem (
https://github.com/DonnchaC/onionbalance/tree/develop/onionbalance) and I
am not qualified to say what, if any, additional v3 Stem features will be
useful or outstanding to support the descriptor-blending that is needed for
loadbalanced configurations.

But OnionBalance for v3 will certainly be necessary. :-)


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