I am on a school controlled mac laptop that is running various management utilities, notably JAMF's Casper. These are set up with a script that seems to auto-kill all the programs in the Tor Browser Bundle every 5 seconds or so, making it impossible to use Tor on these machines. Is it possible to circumvent this kind of attack, short of using TAILS or a virtual machine? I also don't want to disable any of the school's software if it is at all possible.

P.S. I do have root access.

2 Answers 2


Well, you could install VirtualBox, and run Whonix. Whonix comprises a pair of Debian VMs, one being a Tor gateway and the other a workstation.

That would probably prevent the laptop from killing Tor. But maybe it also kills VirtualBox. That would be rather a no-brainer, no?

Does the laptop belong to you or to the school? If the school owns it, you may get busted for circumventing controls (or even for attempting).

  • No, it doesn't kill VirtualBox. I specifically said "short of using TAILS in a virtual machine" (TAILS is quite similar to Whonix). Yes, the school owns the laptop, but I am friends with one of the techs so that isn't an issue. I have circumvented their internet filtering numerous ways but tor was always the easiest and best option. I was just thinking that this is a bit of a design flaw, when tor is supposed to help stop censorship and stuff but it can be blocked that easily.
    – felixphew
    Commented Apr 23, 2014 at 20:55
  • Right, you did exclude VBox etc. Missed that. I don't believe that Tor is designed to resist the OS that it's running in. And here, this truly isn't your computer. So why are VMs and Tails out?
    – mirimir
    Commented Apr 24, 2014 at 1:38
  • Too slow. I want something that is just a quick, open-a-program solution. Also, it's fairly resource-intensive. As for "not truly my computer", it may as well be. If I really cared I could just re-image the thing with a clean Mac OS, but there are other reasons that I want to stay within their system.
    – felixphew
    Commented Apr 24, 2014 at 6:49
  • I don't understand "too slow". Once you install VBox and import the VMs, starting them only takes a minute or two. And although I've never used VMs on Macs, they're not very resource-intensive. Whonix gateway and workstation together need ~0.9 GB RAM, and 7-8 GB disk. A decent dual-core CPU with virtualization enabled is enough.
    – mirimir
    Commented Apr 25, 2014 at 4:31
  • OK, that would work, but I have worked out a better way (see my answer).
    – felixphew
    Commented Jul 1, 2014 at 1:13

You could always compile the Tor binary from scratch - this is a different program to Tor Browser.app and so it may not be blocked.

You would need to get the source code from the Tor Project website, and probably libevent as well. Then, compile them as usual (libevent first: unzip the tarball, ./configure && make && sudo make install and then the same for tor). Then, start Tor (type tor in Terminal - you may want to configure it to run as a daemon - the included example /usr/local/etc/tor/torrc.sample is well commented) and point your web browser to SOCKS5 proxy localhost:9050. Done! You can use this on many applications.

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