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I want to run a bunch of Tor relays, and so plan to buy 10 $5 VPS's from a company called Beastnode. I have had an amazing experience with this company for game servers and websites in the past, so I hope that it'll be fast.

The specs of the VPS I plan to buy is as follows: • 512MB of RAM • 25GB of SSD space (though I doubt this matters?) • 2000GB (2TB) of Bandwidth.

I don't really understand all this bandwidth/s thing on Tor relays, as that 2TB is how much I can use before having to pay bandwidth fees. Is 2TB enough bandwidth overall, and how can I limit how much my relay uses OVERALL (or individually, if you have any recommendations)?

P.S. I would like my relays to be a fast relay.

  • I assume those 2TB are per month. Do you know how fast the network connection is? – Jobiwan Dec 30 '14 at 20:15
  • You can download various sized files on the site to test for yourself, but in my experience they are very fast. And yes, it is per month. – user3994981 Dec 30 '14 at 20:41
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    Beastnode don't allow you to "contain any kind of proxy server or other traffic relaying programs" on their services. Check their T&Cs under Acceptable Use. – Andrew Lott Jan 1 '15 at 4:17
  • There's a list of which hosts and ISPs support/accept Tor. SolarVPS has similar specs for the same price. – Ian Dunn Mar 5 '15 at 7:11
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Those specs don't include CPU speed, number of cores, network speed. 512MB of RAM may be a bit tight.

You can use the following directives in your torrc to influence the bandwidth usage of your relay:

  • RelayBandwidthRate - Limits the average incoming bandwidth usage for relayed traffic on this node to the specified number of bytes per second.
  • RelayBandwidthBurst - Allow up to this much for short periods.
  • AccountingMax - Never send more than the specified number of bytes in a given accounting period, or receive more than that number in the period.
  • AccountingStart - Specify how long accounting periods last. If month is given, each accounting period runs from the time HH:MM on the dayth day of one month to the same day and time of the next.

Your provider will count data in and out separately, so you can relay 1 TB/month, which is 364 KB/sec.

If you set this as your RelayBandwidthRate then you will only get to your 1 TB if your relay is constantly saturated. This is unlikely.
If you set your RelayBandwidthRate too high, you will hit your AccountingMax too soon and your relay will hibernate, which you would want to avoid.

I would set
AccountingMax and AccountingStart to 0.95 TB / month, so you never get to pay overage charges.
RelayBandwidthRate to about 150% or 200% of the calculated 364 KB, so that would be 600 KB/s or so. If you hit your AccountingMax, turn it down a bit. If you don't hit it in your 3rd month, turn it up a bit.
RelayBandwidthBurst to 90% of your actual maximum speed.

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