In recent years, the TOR browser has gained fame all around the world as a must-use browser for privacy lovers, whistleblowers and people who want to share their opinions freely.
It’s security vs speed
It is an acronym for “The Onion Router” & if you aren’t familiar with how it came into being or who should use it, you can read it here & here. While Tor has made optimum privacy possible for many, there has always been quite a difficulty surrounding TOR browser, “its speed”
Tor browser is designed & developed to obfuscate the users’ identities and mask them so that no one from anywhere can steal it from them. It works so by encrypting the data multiple times (similar to the onion layers) This encrypted data then passes through different nodes and each node decrypts one layer at a time.
Also, the destination of the next node is only revealed at each node. But while this multi-encryption sure makes your data private, safe and anonymous, it does so by costing you some speed. Tor isn’t as fast as some other browsers or networks, but it is worth it.
Especially, in the last few years, its speed has improved greatly and while it may still need some time to catch up with other most fast browsers, the loss of some speed is better than the loss of your personal information.
But there are 3 tips which you can use to make Tor faster by yourself. Let’s discuss these tips:
Don’t use Tor for heavy data transfer
Well, this is something that every Tor user or contributor needs to understand. Tor wasn’t and isn’t ideal for torrenting or uploading heavy files. Due to the multiple encryptions and relaying, it will have to take a lot of time before the data is processed.
This not only makes it slower for you but also affects the whole network of other users. Many young users think of TOR as torrent and they use it in the same way. However, Tor is nothing like that it. You should use it to share the data that is useful to you, and not mostly for entertainment purposes.
Now many a time, the ISPs get a hint of whois using Tor or which data flow has Tor connections in it. What they do next is they block the traffic flow. Also, they often limit the bandwidth or take other steps to make it harder for Tor users to browse through the internet. What you can do here is that you can request a new bridge from your Tor provider.
Bridges are alternative relays that the ISPs aren’t aware of. We have also written another blog on the use of bridges, you can read it here. Configuring your browser with a new bridge will make it difficult for the ISP to block your data stream and thus your connection will be faster.
Check for software that might be meddling with TOR
Frankly, TOR isn’t everybody’s favorite involving some security software. This software includes antiviruses, security roots, security essentials by Microsoft and so on. Did you know even if the clock on your computer is a few hours behind TOR might not be able to make a connection?
Yes, that’s true. We’ll cover this subject in another blog. For now, just make sure if it’s any kind of software that’s meddling with your connection. If it is, disable them for a while and use TOR. ou will see a difference in speed.
Bonus tip: You can combine a VPN with Tor
While many people think that VPN & TOR don’t go along with each other, they are at mistake here. Many users prefer to use a TOR browser with a VPN, or a VPN through a TOR browser. There are some combinations available using which you can speed up the TOR browser to some extent.
Well, now you know how to speed up your Tor browser. It may not be speedy as a cheetah, but the difference will still be better.