I do not believe there are any other methods you could use that wouldn't ultimately harm the Tor network in some way.
Limiting the Bandwidth, and setting an Exit Policy are the only tools that Tor provides to configure your exit. Any other policy would have to either
Use some form of traffic inspection, to determine if the traffic is "malicious", for ...
Your running Tor will cache the descriptors of other relays in a file called "cached-descriptors". The descriptors include the exit policies for the relays.
This file will be located in the Tor data directory. The data directory may be specified in your torrc using the DataDirectory keyword. The location is by default within the TBB itself for Tor ...
No. Tor traffic does not necessarily all exit at the same exit node.
For each socket connection that the client sets up, a circuit is used that ends in an appropriate exit node. That is an exit node that allows the IP and port the client is trying to reach.
... most useful Tor node?
It mostly depends on you, assuming you can keep the machine up 24/7, all types of Tor relays are useful for the network.
If you have a good bandwidth, a good ISP and you can keep your box fairly secure, you should consider running an exit node. You may find Tor Exit Guidelines wiki page useful.
If you have a good bandwidth you may ...
Yes and no.
Can I pick and choose what sites a user can access via my exit node?
For instance I might be very pro-facebook, but I probably have no
interest in helping to conceal the identity of people downloading
child-porn or engaging in other things I might find morally
The point of Tor is to make everyone anonymous online; ...
Unfortunately, there are no Jordanian exit nodes currently listed:
Unless you can find one somehow that's miscategorized as being located elsewhere, I think you're out of luck.
To answer your questions in order:
"Are there steps that I should take to make its network contribution more useful?"
Yes: making sure you have adequate bandwidth is one, as well as keeping it up 24/7 and keeping it up-to-date. You may also want to set up a bridge of some kind, to help those in censored countries reach an uncensored internet.
Facebook says the location is based on an approximation, if you hover the mouse over the location you can see the IP Facebook bases its approximation on. Whois test of the IP shows it's not located in Baghdad/Iraq. So this, after all, may be a problem with Facebook handling Tor nodes.
Atlas uses Onionoo as its data back-end. From the Onionoo protocol specification:
Probability of this relay to be selected for the exit position. This probability is calculated based on consensus weights, relay flags, and bandwidth weights in the consensus. Path selection depends on more factors, so that this probability can only be an approximation. ...
Please see the ExitPolicyRejectPrivate torrc option. As the ExitPolicy man page entry says...
These addresses are rejected by default [...] unless
you set the ExitPolicyRejectPrivate config option to 0.
It's very much not suggested but if your goal in all this is to use your own relay as a single-hop exit see AllowSingleHopCircuits
Seconded on tor2web mode. When Tor 0.2.6.x comes out, see also:
for even better performance.
You can specify in advance what machine you want to be the Rendezvous Point. So the idea would be that you have two Tor instances, one relay and one client. Within the client's torrc you set the relay to be ...
Should the exit node be owned or compromised by an attacker the attacker will have it easier to analyzing your traffic (using your behavior, writing style, ...) . Depending on how you use Tor it might in certain circumstances make it possible to at least guess who you are.
If the traffic you produce is spread over more exits an attacker has to control or ...
How can I make sure that my node is as useful to the Tor network as possible?
To me useful means that many users can profit from your node. So a high-bandwith 24/7 running node would be best. However sometimes there are limitations. Maybe you have to pay for extra bandwidth or you can spend only a fixed amount of traffic. In general it is better for the ...
From TBB 3 release candidate 1, at least, the opening page has a link to Test for Network Settings, which leads to the old "Congratulations" page, which now has a link to Atlas: The Atlas page lists the exit and all the Exit Policy stuff.
Here's an example page:
Typically the IP address won't change. A large number of exit nodes are on dedicated servers or VPSs, so the public IP will likely stay same unless the owner moves to a new server. In this case they'll usually carry over the same secret_id_key so history and flags stay the same in Atlas/Globe even with the new IP.
Uptime only measures how long the node (...
Given the fact that exit nodes seem to be implicated with just about every bad story covering Tor - why have them?
I almost exclusively use non-onion sites via Tor. The only times I use hidden services is when I log into one of my machines using SSH and authenticated hidden services. I believe, like me, most people use Tor to be able to anonymously browse ...
It's a lot of wasted time, it's easily detectable and would likely be flagged as malicious and get any such relay ejected from the Tor network for it's efforts.
It might result in easier deanonymization, as is always the case in Tor-over-Tor. The resulting paths might overlap resulting in it using a single relay or relays within the same family as both ...
nope. tor uses both IPv4 and IPv6 if one of them is not prohibited explicitly
To reject IPv6 on all levels add this to your torrc:
ExitPolicy reject6 *:* - it will disable any exit traffic for exit relay, see ExitPolicy description
ClientUseIPv6 0 - it will prohibit Tor client functionality that serves your requests through Tor network to use ...
I've found a partial answer although browsing the tor source code, although reading the man page more closely would've sufficed. lol
There is a FetchUselessDescriptors option that, if you set it, causes Tor to fetch the old style full descriptors, not just the current microdescriptors. At that point, there are many reject lines for specific domains, but ...
A couple of times, I've recieved a mail from the security staff of the VPS service where my exit relay is running, and the solution was to reduce the exit policy.
For the beginning, I'd use only 80 and 443 as exits ports, and later, if no one complains, add more ports to the exit policy.
Running an exit tor relay it's not as "dangerous" as it's seem :)