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Re: [tor-talk] Tor Relay Smartphone App

Casey Rodarmor transcribed 2.0K bytes:
> What is the minimum bandwidth/latency that a node requires in order for it
> to benefit the network? I read here* that 100 kilobytes/s each way would be
> enough, which I imagine many phones are capable of handling, and represent
> a small fraction of a wifi network's bandwidth.
> *https://www.torproject.org/docs/tor-doc-relay.html.en

Hello Casey,

We're currently discussing that the above page should be updated to about
250KB/s. [0]

The problem is this: All clients fetch information about all the relays in the
network from the Directory Authorities/Mirrors, and these fetches take up a
certain amount of bandwidth. If the relay is too slow, the bandwidth provided
by that relay does not compensate for the directory fetching bandwidth used to
tell people about the relay, and thus it is actively harming the network.

Additionally, since Tor processes are normally CPU-bound, most relays aren't
able to use all their available bandwidth with a single Tor process. Running a
relay on ARM (or likely any other mobile/low power) CPU will only further
limit how much traffic your relay is actually pushing.

Additionally, if you're attempting to do this with Orbot on an Android device,
you'll run into issues with Android's process management system and the Tor
process randomly dying unexpectedly. This means that you are providing an
unreliable, flapping relay which is actively messing up other people's
connections through the Tor network.

For the full thread where Mike Perry, myself, and other Tor developers are
discussing the details of how badly slow relays mess up the network, see [0].

[0]: https://lists.torproject.org/pipermail/tor-dev/2014-September/007558.html

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