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Running Tor on a Raspberry Pi Tor 0.3.2.8-rc (git-3696eb720795a666). From the command line, after starting the daemon I am able to use a localhost telnet connection to talk to the control port, following these guides:

https://gitweb.torproject.org/torspec.git/tree/control-spec.txt

https://www.reddit.com/r/TOR/comments/3aymds/how_to_get_info_about_current_tor_circuit_in/

Now that I can verify network status, etc -- is there a command to fetch data from a URL (https://www.nytimes3xbfgragh.onion/ for example) right from the command line? This is mainly for testing purposes.

** someone with more reputation than me should add a "control-port" tag!

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No.

The Control Port is used to control and query the Tor client.

Using Tor as a client and implementing the HTTP protocol is outside of the scope of what the Control Port and the Tor daemon aim to provide.

If you wish to fetch HTTP content over Tor from the command line then there are common commandline utilities like curl, e.g. curl -x socks5h://127.0.0.1:9050/ https://www.nytimes3xbfgragh.onion/ or using custom scripting around python's urllib or pycurl as shown by example in this Stem tutorial.

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