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Stem PathSupport project idea

Adding a project that I'd really like to mentor this GSoC: a stem port for
TorCtl's PathSupport module. Hopefully this idea will get a few interested
students...

Damian Johnson authored on 26/02/2012 23:01:45
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     testing, documentation, and API. This project is not yet feature complete.
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     </p>
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+    <p>
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+    <b>Project Ideas:</b><br />
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+    <i><a href="#stemPathsupport">Stem PathSupport Capabilities</a></i>
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+    </p>
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+    
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     <a id="project-metrics"></a>
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     <h3><a href="https://metrics.torproject.org/">Metrics</a> (code: <a
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     href="https://gitweb.torproject.org/metrics-db.git">db</a>, <a
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     robustness.</p>
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     </li>
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+    <a id="stemPathsupport"></a>
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+    <li>
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+    <b>Stem PathSupport Capabilities</b>
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+    <br>
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+    Priority: <i>Medium</i>
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+    <br>
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+    Effort Level: <i>High</i>
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+    <br>
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+    Skill Level: <i>Medium</i>
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+    <br>
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+    Likely Mentors: <i>Damian (atagar)</i>
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+    <p><a
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+    href="https://trac.torproject.org/projects/tor/wiki/doc/stem">Stem</a> is a
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+    python controller library for tor. Like it's predecessor, <a
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+    href="#project-torctl">TorCtl</a>, it uses tor's <a
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+    href="https://gitweb.torproject.org/torspec.git/blob/HEAD:/control-spec.txt">control
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+    protocol</a> to help developers program against the tor process, enabling
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+    them to build things similar to <a href="#project-vidalia">Vidalia</a> and
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+    <a href="#project-arm">arm</a>.</p>
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+    
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+    <p>While TorCtl provided a fine first draft for this sort of functionality,
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+    it has not proved to be extensible nor maintainable. Stem is a rewrite of
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+    TorCtl with a heavy focus on testing, documentation, and providing a
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+    developer friendly API.</p>
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+    
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+    <p>At the moment stem is still very much incomplete, missing several pieces
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+    of functionality that TorCtl provides. This is a project to fix that by
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+    porting TorCtl's <a
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+    href="https://gitweb.torproject.org/pytorctl.git/blob/HEAD:/PathSupport.py">PathSupport
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+    module</a> to stem, writing tests for it, and migrate a couple clients to
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+    use it.</p>
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+    
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+    <p>PathSupport provides applications with programmatic control over how
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+    tor's circuits are built, for instance letting you exit from particular
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+    relays. This is used by projects like <a href="#project-torbel">TorBEL</a>,
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+    <a href="#project-torflow">the Bandwidth Scanners, and SoaT</a>.</p>
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+    
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+    <p>This project can be broken into three parts...</p>
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+    
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+    <ol style="list-style-type: decimal">
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+      <li><p>Look at PathSupport's clients to figure out how it is used and
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+      come up with the API that we will use for stem. Note that the goal if
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+      this project is <b>not</b> to simply copy PathSupport, but to make it
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+      better. This task would ideally be done as part of writing the GSoC
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+      application.</p></li>
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+      <li><p>Implement the PathSupport counterpart for stem. This should be
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+      done in an incremental fashion, writing the feature, tests, and going
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+      through a code review before moving on. I'll be pretty anal about making
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+      it as good as we can during these code reviews so plan for this to take a
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+      while. ;)</p></li>
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+      <li><p>The real test of the API that you've developed will come when we
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+      use it in some real applications. Try to migrate a TorCtl client or two
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+      to stem, filling in functionality that we're missing and improving our
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+      API as we discover issues. A particularly good client to start with would
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+      be TorBEL.</p></li>
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+    </ol>
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+    
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     <a id="geoIPUpgrade"></a>
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     <li>
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     <b>Improve our GeoIP file format</b>