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Bug #16993

Circuit view broken after resuming from suspend or disconnecting+reconnecting to/from the network

Added by sajolida 4 months ago. Updated about 1 month ago.

Status:
Confirmed
Priority:
Normal
Assignee:
-
Category:
Tor configuration
Target version:
-
Start date:
Due date:
% Done:

0%

Feature Branch:
Type of work:
Code
Blueprint:
Starter:
Affected tool:
Browser

Description

As reported by Michael Gerstacker on tails-testers:

  • Start Tor Browser.
  • Open "debian.org" in a 1st tab.
  • Open "potager.org" in a 2nd tab.
  • Suspend.
  • Resume from suspend.
  • Open "riseup.net" in a 3rd tab.
  • The embeded circuit view from Tor Browser is not shown.

It's older than 4.0~beta1 but still affecting it.

2.cleaned.png View - x webpage after refreshing, the circuit view disappears (241 KB) ignatius, 11/06/2019 10:53 AM

1.cleaned.png View - x webpage where circuit view is present (216 KB) ignatius, 11/06/2019 10:53 AM

3.cleaned.png View - y webpage where circuit view was absent from the start (392 KB) ignatius, 11/06/2019 10:53 AM


Related issues

Related to Tails - Feature #16531: Define our core code base In Progress 03/05/2019

History

#1 Updated by intrigeri 4 months ago

  • Subject changed from Circuit view broken after resuming from susend to Circuit view broken after resuming from suspend

#2 Updated by intrigeri 4 months ago

  • Subject changed from Circuit view broken after resuming from suspend to Circuit view broken after resuming from suspend or disconnecting+reconnecting to/from the network

Gah, it's even worse than that: disconnecting/reconnecting is enough to break the circuit view. I suspect that's related to the fact we restart Tor when we connect to a network.

Restarting Tor Browser fixes the problem (not saying it's a good solution for users, but it's useful debugging information :)

I'm not sure if it's because our Onion Grater control port filtering proxy fails to reconnect to Tor after it has restarted, or if it's because Tor Browser fails to notice its connection was broken and it should reconnect.

#3 Updated by intrigeri 4 months ago

Meta: we should discuss whether this circuit view is part of "the core Tails system". It's for sure very nice (even though we have OnionCircuits for a reason) but in general I'd rather not see every feature added on a hunch without much coordination, by someone on their spare time, automatically become something we have to maintain forever.

#4 Updated by intrigeri 4 months ago

#5 Updated by sajolida 4 months ago

I think that we should keep the UX of Tor Browser in Tails as close as
possible from the UX of Tor Browser outside Tails.

Assuming that most of our users were Tor Browser users first outside of
Tails, they will look for the same features and might be confused or
worried if they are not in Tails without any further indication.

Michael's report could illustrate that. It seems like:

  • He relied on the embedded circuit views before Onion Circuits,
    possibly because he learned it outside of Tails.
  • He got worried when some tabs didn't display it.

Of course, that's too little information to draw clear conclusion of how
would users feel if the embedded circuit view wasn't here in Tails in
the first place.

Another solution would be to replace the embedded circuit view with a
hint to use Onion Circuits instead.

#6 Updated by op_mb 4 months ago

Onion Circuits, as far as i can tell, do not allow to actively select a new circuit -

some websites block certain exit nodes and/or countries,
if the "new circuit for this website" button not showing, your stuck on the denied webpage without ability to actively change the circuit, so you are forced to wait until the circuit changes automatically, or you have to restart the browser.

in any case, as long as the is no other option to actively change the circuit, the button should stay.

#7 Updated by op_mb 4 months ago

also,

because the circuits are still active after sleep/disconnect, but the button is not there,
it is possible that it is just an object.draw refresh issue, so it might not be that hard to fix.

was working a year ago or so, before new interface was introduced, maybe go through old code have a look?

#8 Updated by ignatius about 1 month ago

Circuit view for me also breaks randomly after refreshing the page, at least I was not able to find any pattern.

I am attaching 3 images,

- 1st one is a webpage where circuit view was present
- 2nd one is that ^ same webpage where circuit view disappeared after a refresh
- 3rd one is another webpage where circuit view was absent from the start

The Amnesic Incognito Live System
Build information:
4.0 - 20191021

#9 Updated by intrigeri about 1 month ago

FWIW, I've seen circuits view disappear (or not be present at all right from the beginning) on a pristine Tor Browser 9.0.1 outside of Tails.
I was focused on something else so I did not debug this further.

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