OS X support document suggestions
chris at eff.org
Mon Apr 3 21:53:43 UTC 2006
It looks like this message didn't make it to the list, probably because
of the large attachments. At least, I never saw it hit the list. If a
message is refused due to size, it seems like the list server should
tell the sender that instead of silently dropping it.
Oh well. Anyway, the screenshots (now edited and PNGed) mentioned in
the message are available at:
Note the nice information disclosure in the Firefox GUI elements like
the tabs and Google search box. ;)
----- Forwarded message from Chris Palmer <chris at eff.org> -----
From: Chris Palmer <chris at eff.org>
To: Rixor <wethepeople1776 at excite.com>, or-talk at freehaven.net
Date: Sun, 2 Apr 2006 22:09:49 -0700
Subject: Re: OS X support document suggestions
> > In theory it should just work by default. Did you have problems?
> > What are the details of OS X's builtin firewall?
> I've been trying to get you to a technical page on the apple website
> the free connection I'm at right now keeps timing out. If you go to
> Apple.com then Developers and you can get the fireewall specs there.
> Sorry. I'm not a developer.
> Problem - I think the crawling connections may have been related to
> the privoxy proxy trying to get out from behind my builtin firewall.
> if i use ichat with audio or video for example I need to use port
> forwarding (or triggering?) between my router's firewall and my
> builtin firewall. I use my laptop all over so I always leave the
> firewall on.
With the default configuration of OS X' built-in firewall, I've never
had problems browsing the web through Privoxy and Tor. As far as I
know, the firewall does only ingress filtering, not egress filtering;
which is to say, it only blocks incoming connections but not outgoing
connections. When an application (such as your web browser, or Tor, or
Privoxy) tries to establish an outbound connection, the firewall allows
that and also remembers to allow (for the duration of the connection)
traffic incoming on the port from which your application started the
So unless you've done something weird to your firewall configuration,
the firewall is probably not responsible for your performance problems.
> > > 2. how to figure out why browsing slows down to 9000 baud modem
> > > speed when Tor and Privoxy are installed and how to troubleshoot
> > > it
> > http://wiki.noreply.org/noreply/TheOnionRouter/TorFAQ#WhySlow
> Hmm. that just gave ways to support TOR not troubleshoot the client. I
> have a donate link to EFF on my blog. I'm not a developer. I can't
> help that way.
Well, the first paragraph says that Tor is, necessarily, inherently
"slow" (i.e. latency is increased and bandwidth may be decreased).
There's not much troubleshooting you can do in the client -- there's no
trouble to shoot.
That said, I find Tor's performance varies widely depending on the time
of day and how lucky I get when Tor creates its circuit -- sometimes I
get a circuit through low-latency, high-bandwidth servers, and web
browsing feels only slightly slower. Other times I get an unlucky
circuit and web browsing feels much slower.
You don't have to be a developer to help fix this problem. You can run
a fast server and thereby increase the chances that people will get
faster circuits more often.
> > > 3. how to actually configure Privoxy using the Firefox plugin (the
> > > instructions are Windoze only)
> > No, the instructions work on OS X too. They even work on Linux and
> > BSD.
> Nope - I'm afraid they don't, and I wrote to you about it back when it
> was installed on my machine, but had to delete it because of the 9000
> baud speed problems or I would have sent you screenshots. The Windoze
> instructions do not work on OS X firefox plugin. If someone has gotten
> it to work, then they should take screenshots and post them.
Here I agree with you and not with Roger. This page:
does not mention Firefox or any Firefox plugin at all. The proxy
setting instructions only work for applications that obey your
systemwide proxy settings, such as Safari. Firefox does not pay
attention to the systemwide proxy settings.
I've attached screenshots to this message which, with some editing and a
format change, may be suitable for the web page. Basically, the recipe
1. Select the menu item Firefox -> Preferences...
2. Click the Connection Settings... button in the General tab.
3. Fill in the proxy information as in the screenshot.
The SwitchProxy and TorButton plugins make turning the proxy
configuration on and off much easier, and it should be pretty obvious
how to install and use them if you've ever installed another Firefox
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