I installed Tor on a Windows 10 Insider Build but it fails to run. I opened Taskmanager but failed to detect any activity from Tor. Tor has run successfully 'out of the box' under earlier builds but not under builds since 16226. Is there a configuration issue?

I tried running in compatible mode and with admin rights to no avail. The Tor version is configured for Windows, i.e not under Cygwin or MinGW. The 'vanilla' version of Firefox runs, but not the TOR configured version. I've been unable to find any console log files.

  • can you paste the log from console/cmd? What exactly the way you're doing it? standalone dot-exe or Cygwin or MinGW?
    – Alexey Vesnin
    Commented Jul 26, 2017 at 18:04
  • the version being used is the stand-alone dot-exe rather than through Cygwin or MinGW.
    – JGI
    Commented Jul 28, 2017 at 10:35
  • There are no console log files. Can you advise what program need to be run to generate the required information?
    – JGI
    Commented Jul 28, 2017 at 10:36
  • The latest 'vanilla' version of Firefox runs without any difficulties.
    – JGI
    Commented Jul 28, 2017 at 10:39
  • Just run it in cmd.exe - the program is tor.exe and give it no arguments. It should start on a reasonable defaults and print all the logs to the console
    – Alexey Vesnin
    Commented Jul 28, 2017 at 12:55

1 Answer 1


So - thanks to moderator - the question is reopen. What's your situation looks like is a fake distribution of Tor or TorBrowser. It sounds weird, but I've helped a person about a year ago with the exactly the same problem: tor.exe binary was replaced and did not worked as supposed to, but it have tried to imitate the Tor's real console output and even passed something through! I suspect it was even trying to wiretap the data, so I hope you haven't tried anything privacy-sensitive so far. Here is what you need to do - please follow it step by step and I think your problem will be fixed as well. If some part of the problem will remain - feel free to drop a line and we'll fix it all! So - shall we begin?

  • First of all - pack your "fake tor distribution" in an archive for further investigation and delete the folder after the archive was made. Tor distributions are not requiring any registry or service tasks, so just removing the folder will be fine.

  • This step is kind of optional, but - as a precaution - run a full antivirus check with a proper antivirus. Who knows what exactly was in that fake distro. If you're using a crap Like Esen NOD32 or any of Kasperskiy's products - REMOVE IT, it's a crapware, spying for you. Under the windows I do recommend BitDefender or Sophos - in both the SSL traffic inspection is turned on by default, but you can turn it off and it actually turns off. Sophos is more like a PRO-tool, so if you're not so experienced in a system administration area - no problem, just use BitDefender. SSL inspection there is turned off in Web protection gear sign.

  • Now you go to TorProject full downloads page https://www.torproject.org/download/download.html.en and downloading the Expert Bundle, not the browser one. You get the exe and the dot-sig file. It's a digital signature that is elaborated not just for authenticity ferification, but also for intergrity purposes, i.e. the distro you'll about to download was not modified on-flight. After that use this tutorial from TorProject to verify the signatures. As you'll verify it all - you'll extract the zip into c:\tor folder. You can change the drive letter, but change the following lines as well then. Do not use any space-containing, non-english or long names for a directory - it will save you tons of time! After doing this you'll have 2 folders from zip - Tor and Data as c:\tor\Tor and c:\tor\Data. Create a folder c:\tor\local and leave it empty.

  • Next step is to create a very basic config file for Tor. It does have a very reasonable defaults, but let us just be specific. Create file c:\tor\Tor\torrc - without any extension, just name it torrc. If you have any difficulties with that - create it as torrc.txt and replace it in lines below. The contents of this file will be simple and straightforward as well:

    RunAsDaemon 0
    FastFirstHopPK 0
    AllowSingleHopCircuits 0
    EnforceDistinctSubnets 1
    UseEntryGuards 1
    DisableAllSwap 1
    DataDirectory c:\tor\local
    GeoIPFile c:\tor\Data\Tor\geoip
    GeoIPv6File c:\tor\Data\Tor\geoip6
    Log notice stdout
    ExitPolicy reject *:*
    ExitPolicy reject6 *:*

Cool, but what does it means? Basically, we're about to store the local instance data in c:\tor\local subfolder, i.e. in case of future updates you just safely overwrite the Data and Tor folders as you need and leaving the instance data intact. We instruct Tor to avoid disr swap and usage as good as possible - nowdays we have enourg RAM on computers to run Tor: Raspberry Pi B+ with 512Mb and one core runs Tor just perfect without any need in swap, so your PC will do as well. We're instructing Tor to run in foreground, not as a service and log everything to the console - so if something is wrong, we will see it. We prohibit any traffic exiting from the node and telling where to get a copy of MaxMind GeoIP base - it's free edition is distributed with Tor.

  • Next we need to run our Tor :) Create a batch file - like torrun.bat with the next lines in it:

    @echo on
    cd c:\tor\Tor
    C:\tor\Tor\tor.exe -f C:\tor\Tor\torrc

    Remember I was talking about torrc..txt instead of just torrc ? If you did txt file - a line C:\tor\Tor\tor.exe -f C:\tor\Tor\torrc goes to be C:\tor\Tor\tor.exe -f C:\tor\Tor\torrc.txt

Run this - and if you'll see Bootstrapped 100% line - you're in! Use Firefox and FoxyProxy add-on to divert all the traffic through SOCKS at port 9050 and don't forget to click checkbox to resolve DNS via proxy. Feel free to ask any further questions! If your Tor will not bootstrap to 100% - send the console log via pastebin.com

  • 1
    Can you explain why you think that @JGI has a 'fake distribution'?
    – Jens Kubieziel
    Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 21:43
  • @JensKubieziel because of the odd thing that he described - tor.exe if runned in console DOES prints something, AT LEAST. And the asker has stated clearly "There are no console log files" - that was quite similar to the situation I helped to solve. When the fake exe was given a -f key with the config - it did not succeeded in running it, but tried to mimic the output. So - the tutorial I gave has actually solved the problem that time, and I think it will fix the things up this time too.
    – Alexey Vesnin
    Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 22:33
  • Dear Alexey, sorry for the delay - work intervened! Deleted the original exe version and downloaded the 'expert' version. initially ran Tor.exe directly without creating the torrc and bat files and achieved Bootstrapped 100% Done. then created and ran the torrc and bat files with limited success! the console output suggests reading config failed due to malformed IP. (The fake distribution was the files from the Tor site not any mirror!!)
    – JGI
    Commented Aug 4, 2017 at 13:17
  • without using torrc or the bat file running tor then firefox appears to work, however it is unclear whether the browser is running under under tor.
    – JGI
    Commented Aug 4, 2017 at 13:45
  • Please post the console errors and your torrc. If you have got the messages now in console - it means that an expert bundle is working
    – Alexey Vesnin
    Commented Aug 4, 2017 at 14:25

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .