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    <a href="<page index>">Home &raquo; </a>
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    <a href="<page docs/tor-doc-relay>">Configure Tor Relay</a>
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    <h1>Configuring a Tor relay</h1>


    The Tor network relies on volunteers to donate bandwidth. The more
    people who run relays, the faster the Tor network will be. If you have
    at least 30 kilobytes/s each way, please help out Tor by configuring your
    Tor to be a relay too.

    <p>You can run a Tor relay on pretty much any operating system. Tor relays
    work best on Linux, OS X Tiger or later, FreeBSD 5.x+, NetBSD 5.x+, and
    Windows Server 2003 or later.

    <a id="zero"></a>
    <a id="install"></a>
    <h2><a class="anchor" href="#install">Step One: Download and Install Tor</a></h2>

    <p>Before you start, you need to make sure that Tor is up and running.

    <p>Visit our <a href="<page download/download>">download page</a> and
    install the "Installation Bundle" for your OS.

    <p>If it's convenient, you might also want to use it as a client for a
    while to make sure it's actually working.</p>

    <a id="setup"></a>
    <h2><a class="anchor" href="#setup">Step Two: Set it up as a relay</a></h2>
    <li>Verify that your clock and timezone are set
    correctly. If possible, synchronize your clock with public <a

    <li><strong>Manual Configuration</strong>:
    <li>Edit the bottom part of <a href="<page docs/faq>#torrc">your
    torrc file</a>. If you want to be a public relay (recommended),
    make sure to define ORPort and <a href="<page
    docs/faq>#ExitPolicies">look at ExitPolicy</a>; otherwise
    if you want to be a <a href="<page docs/faq>#RelayOrBridge">bridge</a>
    for users in countries that censor their Internet,
    just use <a href="<page docs/bridges>#RunningABridge">these lines</a>.

    <li><strong>Configuring Tor with the Vidalia Graphical Interface</strong>:

    	<dt>Right click on the Vidalia icon in your task bar.  Choose <tt>Control Panel</tt>.</dt>
    	<dd><img alt="vidalia right click menu" src="$(IMGROOT)/screenshot-win32-vidalia.png" /></dd>

    <li>Click <tt>Setup Relaying</tt>.</li>

    	<dt>Choose <tt>Relay Traffic for the Tor network</tt> if you
want to be a public relay (recommended), or choose <tt>Help
censored users reach the Tor network</tt> if you want to be a <a
href="<page docs/faq>#RelayOrBridge">bridge</a> for users in countries
that censor their Internet.</dt>
    <dd><img alt="vidalia basic settings" src="$(IMGROOT)/screenshot-win32-configure-relay-1.png" /></dd>

    <li>Enter a nickname for your relay, and enter contact information in
    case we need to contact you about problems.</li>

    <li>Leave <tt>Attempt to automatically configure port forwarding</tt> clicked.
    Push the <tt>Test</tt> button to see if it works.  If it does work, great.
    If not, see number 3 below.</li>

    <li><dt>Choose the <tt>Bandwidth Limits</tt> tab.  Select how much bandwidth you want to provide for Tor users like yourself.</dt>
    <dd><img alt="vidalia bandwidth limits" src="$(IMGROOT)/screenshot-win32-configure-relay-2.png" /></dd>

    <li><dt>Choose the <tt>Exit Policies</tt> tab.  If you want to allow others
    to use your relay for these services, don't change anything.  Un-check
    the services you don't want to allow people to <a href="<page
    docs/faq>#ExitPolicies">reach from your relay</a>.  If you want to
    be a non-exit relay, un-check all services.</dt>
    <dd><img alt="vidalia exit policies" src="$(IMGROOT)/screenshot-win32-configure-relay-3.png" /></dd>

    <li>Click the <tt>Ok</tt> button.  See Step Three below for confirmation
    that the relay is working correctly.</li>

    <li>If you are using a firewall, open a hole in your firewall
    so incoming connections can reach the ports you configured
    (ORPort, plus DirPort if you enabled it). If you have a
    hardware firewall (Linksys box, cablemodem, etc) you might like <a
    href="http://portforward.com/">portforward.com</a>. Also, make sure you
    allow all <em>outgoing</em> connections too, so your relay can reach the
    other Tor relays.

    <li>Restart your relay. If it <a
    href="<page docs/faq>#Logs">logs
    any warnings</a>, address them.

    <li>Subscribe to the <a
    mailing list. It is very low volume, and it will keep you informed
    of new stable releases. You might also consider subscribing to <a
    href="<page docs/documentation>#MailingLists">the higher-volume Tor lists</a>
    <li><a href="https://weather.torproject.org/">Tor Weather</a> provides
    an email notification service to any users who want to monitor the
    status of a Tor node. Upon subscribing, you can specify what types of
    alerts you would like to receive. The main purpose of Tor Weather is
    to notify node operators via email if their node is down for longer
    than a specified period, but other notification types are available.


    <a id="check"></a>
    <h2><a class="anchor" href="#check">Step Three: Make sure it is working</a></h2>

    <p>As soon as your relay manages to connect to the network, it will
    try to determine whether the ports you configured are reachable from
    the outside. This step is usually fast, but may take up to 20
    minutes. Look for a <a href="<page docs/faq>#Logs">log entry</a> like
    <tt>Self-testing indicates your ORPort is reachable from the outside. Excellent.</tt>
    If you don't see this message, it means that your relay is not reachable
    from the outside &mdash; you should re-check your firewalls, check that it's
    testing the IP and port you think it should be testing, etc.

    <p>When it decides that it's reachable, it will upload a "server
    descriptor" to the directories, to let clients know
    what address, ports, keys, etc your relay is using. You can <a
    href="">load one of
    the network statuses manually</a> and
    look through it to find the nickname you configured, to make sure it's
    there. You may need to wait up to one hour to give enough time for it to
    make a fresh directory.</p>

    <a id="after"></a>
    <h2><a class="anchor" href="#after">Step Four: Once it is working</a></h2>

    We recommend the following steps as well:

    6. Read
    <a href="<wiki>doc/OperationalSecurity">about operational security</a>
    to get ideas how you can increase the security of your relay.

    7. If you want to run more than one relay that's great, but please set <a
    href="<page docs/faq>#MultipleRelays">the
    MyFamily option</a> in all your relays' configuration files.

    8. Decide about rate limiting. Cable modem, DSL, and other users
    who have asymmetric bandwidth (e.g. more down than up) should
    rate limit to their slower bandwidth, to avoid congestion. See the <a
    limiting FAQ entry</a> for details.

    9. Back up your Tor relay's private key (stored in "keys/secret_id_key"
    in your DataDirectory). This is your relay's "identity," and
    you need to keep it safe so nobody can read the traffic that goes
    through your relay. This is the critical file to keep if you need to <a
    or restore your Tor relay</a> if something goes wrong.


    10. If you control the name servers for your domain, consider setting your
    reverse DNS hostname to 'anonymous-relay', 'proxy' or 'tor-proxy', so when
    other people see the address in their web logs, they will more quickly
    understand what's going on. Adding the <a
    exit notice</a> on a vhost for this name can go a long way to deterring abuse
    complaints to you and your ISP if you are running an exit node.


    11. If your computer isn't running a webserver, please consider
    changing your ORPort to 443 and your DirPort to 80. Many Tor
    users are stuck behind firewalls that only let them browse the
    web, and this change will let them reach your Tor relay. Win32
    relays can simply change their ORPort and DirPort directly
    in their torrc and restart Tor. OS X or Unix relays can't bind
    directly to these ports (since they don't run as root), so they will
    need to set up some sort of <a
    port forwarding</a> so connections can reach their Tor relay. If you are
    using ports 80 and 443 already but still want to help out, other useful
    ports are 22, 110, and 143.

    12. If your Tor relay provides other services on the same IP address
    &mdash; such as a public webserver &mdash; make sure that connections to the
    webserver are allowed from the local host too. You need to allow these
    connections because Tor clients will detect that your Tor relay is the <a
    way to reach that webserver</a>, and always build a circuit that ends
    at your relay. If you don't want to allow the connections, you must
    explicitly reject them in your exit policy.

    13. (Unix only). Make a separate user to run the relay. If you
    installed the OS X package or the deb or the rpm, this is already
    done. Otherwise, you can do it by hand. (The Tor relay doesn't need to
    be run as root, so it's good practice to not run it as root. Running
    as a 'tor' user avoids issues with identd and other services that
    detect user name. If you're the paranoid sort, feel free to <a
    href="<wiki>doc/TorInChroot">put Tor
    into a chroot jail</a>.)

    14. (Unix only.) Your operating system probably limits the number
    of open file descriptors per process to 1024 (or even less). If you
    plan to be running a fast exit node, this is probably not enough. On
    Linux, you should add a line like "toruser hard nofile 8192" to your
    /etc/security/limits.conf file (where toruser is the user that runs the
    Tor process), and then restart Tor if it's installed as a package (or log
    out and log back in if you run it yourself). The Debian/Ubuntu package
    does this step for you.

    15. If you installed Tor via some package or installer, it probably starts
    Tor for you automatically on boot. But if you installed from source,
    you may find the initscripts in contrib/tor.sh or contrib/torctl useful.

    When you change your Tor configuration, remember to verify that your
    relay still works correctly after the change. Be sure to set your
    "ContactInfo" line in the torrc so we can contact you if you need to
    upgrade or something goes wrong. If you have problems or questions, see
    the <a href="<page docs/documentation>#Support">Support</a> section or
    <a href="<page about/contact>">contact us</a> on the tor-ops list. Thanks
    for helping to make the Tor network grow!


    <p>If you have suggestions for improving this document, please <a
    href="<page about/contact>">send them to us</a>. Thanks!</p>
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