I have Sandboxie I use with my firefox when looking in dangerous areas of the regular web and wanted to know if i can use it with Tor? This lets me simply close the browser if there is an infection and it will not spread to other areas of my PC.

1 Answer 1


The premise of your question is flawed. First you need to define what an "infection" is. Presumably you are referring to a virus that can "infect" your computer from the web. Second, Tor is not "sandboxed" from the rest of your OS (unless you're running something like Qubes/Tails).

The default Tor browser is not "sandboxed" any more than any arbitrary application on your computer is "sandboxed." Further, there is no guarantee that actions you take within the Tor browser will not impact the rest of the operating system.

For example, if you download a file in Tor browser, the file now exists on your computer. There is no "sandbox". If the file is malicious, running it can infect you with a virus the same way that running any file can. Your computer does not care that you downloaded it via Tor.

From a practical standpoint, the best advice I can give is to not open files you download over Tor. If you must open them, open them in a virtual machine. You should be especially wary of .pdf files, as they are some of the most commonly exploited.

In general, the risk of downloading a malicious file from a Tor hidden service is far higher than the risk of downloading a malicious file from a clearnet site. That's just the nature of the beast.

  • I guess I am referring to when i am surfing and open a page of the web (which has malware, or trys to immediately infect my PC) and my AV software grabs the infection right off. Not from downloading or opening anything which you are correct, and stops nothing. And is Sandboxie compatible with the Tor browser? Commented Mar 23, 2016 at 22:19
  • You need to understand the path malware takes to your system. It starts on the server, which responds to your HTTP request with a response page containing HTML and Javascript. Some of that Javascript might execute malicious code or exploit a vulnerability to force a download onto your system. The download is a separate HTTP request, and the response is a file that you save to your system. Once you save the file, it exists on your system just like any other file. It does not matter that it came from the Internet. If it contains code exploiting an active vulnerability, it can "infect" you.
    – Miles R
    Commented Mar 23, 2016 at 23:46
  • Went on sandboxie forum, Tor is not supported. Causes it to crash. Thanks for the input Miles. You provided excellent info. Commented Mar 24, 2016 at 8:54

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