[tor-talk] OTFC IRC issues - new Tor friendly IRC network?

Asa Rossoff asa at lovetour.info
Fri Jul 4 06:19:57 UTC 2014

Hi Patrick,
I reported that issue to OFTC on their support channel and was told by an
operator that they believed they had a temporary Tor block in -place at the
moment, however, I was able to reconnect with a new ciruit (and before
identifying to services, got a Tor cloak, oddly enough).  I hit that issue
(same .at server noted in disconnect notice) just after 22:00 UTC on 2 July.
A new ciruit immediately resolved the problem for me.

It's possible that the OFTC operator was incorrect about what the issue
was.... If it persists, naming that server, I think it is up to them to fix
(and users to report).

I tried following the web page instrucions and reporting via email :), but
their mail exchange was over-zealous and bounced my message, which I also
reported.  The op said they have some unidentified/unresolved issues
communicating with certain mail servers.

As to whether 37lnq2veifl4kar7.onion is official, http://www.oftc.net/Tor/
only says "There is even a hidden service onion address that someone has
taken upon themselves to maintain, it is however not supported in any
official capacity by OFTC."

So, it is not official, and being thrid-party maintained, is certainly
routed through a normal exit node, so the issue with at least that exit node
at that time being rejected by OFTC should be independent of using the
hidden service to connect or not.

It is also extra-advisable to use SSL to connect, since there is an
additional man-in-the-middle running the hidden service... But of course SSL
should always be used anyway.

OFTC occasionally bans Tor connectinons to the best of their ability when a
lot of abuse is happenning, but most IRC servers seem to ban Tor connections
outright.  I'm happy enough personally with OFTC and it is suitable
considering their mission.  If we can suggest better ways for them to handle
abuse they might consider them, but it is a challenging issue on IRC as we
have seen on our own Tor channels lately.

One partial workaround is to use/also use a trusted IRC bouncer with a very
stable connection  to reduce the chances you will be disconnected and then
become subject to any ongoing ban.


> -----Original Message-----
> From: tor-talk [mailto:tor-talk-bounces at lists.torproject.org] On Behalf
> Of Patrick Schleizer
> Sent: Thursday, July 03, 2014 7:42 AM
> To: tor-talk at lists.torproject.org
> Subject: Re: [tor-talk] OTFC IRC issues - new Tor friendly IRC network?
> BlueStar88:
> > On Wed, 02 Jul 2014 09:15:47 +0000
> > Patrick Schleizer <adrelanos at riseup.net> wrote:
> >
> >> BlueStar88:
> >>>
> >>> 37lnq2veifl4kar7.onion:6697 is up and running fine.
> >>
> >> Who runs that server? Inoffical one?
> >>
> >> I was more looking for a scalable, robust solution rather than
> >> individual quick fix.
> >
> > Hello Patrick,
> >
> > I don't know, who runs that service, but by using SSL, certificate
> verification and fingerprinting and optional OTR on top of that,
> there's nothing wrong with that one. Better having a stable unknown
> channel, than blocked official ones.
> >
> > That hidden service works well with my IRC-bouncer, which I use with
> "usewithtor" (torsocks wrapper). It seems to be quite robust to me.
> >
> > Well, your initial request was to have at least a temporary
> alternative.
> Doesn't work either at the moment.
> Closing Link: asteria.debian.or.at (No more connections from this host
> allowed.  See http://www.oftc.net/oftc/LimitExceptions for more info.)
> Disconnected (Remote host closed socket).
> --
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