[tor-relays] tor network "loses" ~50 relays/day due to bw auth problem

Tom Ritter tom at ritter.vg
Wed May 20 21:13:57 UTC 2015

On Wednesday, 20 May 2015, Speak Freely <when2plus2is5 at riseup.net> wrote:

> To be a bwauth you have to be a dirauth, if the bwauth draft spec I read
> was correct. But how do you become a dirauth? The addresses are
> hardcoded into Tor, so it's not like I could just spin up a dirauth in
> an evening and let the network do the rest. There's got to be more to it.

You don't need to *be* a DirAuth, but you do need to work closely with a
DirAuth to have them use your data to vote.  Being a DirAuth requires an
incredible amount of trust by the community, established operational
skills, and usually a solid public reputation.

Right now Tor has two new BWAuths spinning up, one of which will hopefully
be included in the vote this week or weekend. One of the things we're
finding through the process is that the torflow scripts are a little
buggy.  So far they've been buggy in obvious ways, but the worry is that
they're buggy in non-obvious way - that some change in the dependencies
since they've been written are causing wrong results.  We're not sure if
that's the case yet.  If it is, we will hopefully be getting an indication
soon, and will want to work on debugging it, possible with the affected
relay operators.

The code is at

While reviewing and testing the code may be useful, I would caution against
everyone spinning up a BWAuth though.  By it's very nature, it uses a lot
of bandwidth.  I don't know if it would put strain on the network if
suddenly 16 BWAuths were running instead of 6. (Maybe someone better at the
math part of the network bandwidth would have an idea.)

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