I have a Hidden Service running on a couple of Raspberry Pi's on my home network, one of the Pis is running The Prosody jabber server and the other Pi is running Tor with a Hidden Service configured on it pointing to the Prosody server. If that makes sense!

However, after an unfortunate meeting with a glass of water the Raspberry Pi has now gone to the great raspberry patch in the sky. Which obviously means that it's taken the Hidden Service with it.

Now, in an unusual fit of foresight I remembered to save the output of the following two commands to removable storage:

sudo more /var/lib/tor/keys/secret_id_key

sudo more /var/lib/tor/keys/secret_onion_key

I did this as it was my understanding that I would be able to transfer this information to a new machine and recreate the Hidden Service on the new machine.

So, I now have a new installation of Raspbian and Tor running on a new Raspberry Pi, but I can't recreate the old service. I really need to recreate it because a few people already have the address and I'd rather not have to make everybody recreate their accounts you see.

I tried putting those two files back in their respective places, but nothing happened and I wasn't able to connect to the same Hidden Service address as before. I've also tried creating a new hidden service, and once created tried substituting my private keys for the ones Tor created for the new service.

Neither of which approaches worked.

Now,I'm sure I'm missing something completely obvious, but can somebody point me in the right direction please?

1 Answer 1


If the files are copied correctly then you should be able to do so. Please make sure your new hidden service points to the correct folder for where it get's its domain + key.

HiddenServiceDir /Library/Tor/var/lib/tor/hidden_service/
HiddenServicePort 80

make sure you set 'HiddenServiceDir' to the dir where you store your files. If it still fails - then please check the Tor log for more information about what's going wrong.

  • and copy the cache folders too - speed things up
    – Alexey Vesnin
    Feb 7, 2016 at 20:11

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