Tor often unable to connect


#1

I am using Brave Browser on macOS and the Tor feature often says its unable to connect and I have to retry a few times before it will work. Is this a known bug in Brave for macOS? Note: My ISP does not filter Tor traffic nor does the VPN I use filter it. In-fact Tor Browser itself works without an issue.


Private Tab with Tor not connecting (but at the beginning it says successfully connected)
#2

When it fails to connect, before you hit retry or restart the browser, can you please save a copy of your tor.log file and send it to us?

There’s no sensitive information in it, but it may help diagnose the problem. It’s located at: ~/Library/Application Support/brave/tor/data/tor.log

(If you hit the retry button or restart the browser, it will be overwritten.)

The console output may also be helpful.


#3
Last login: Wed Jul 11 10:43:33 on console
Nathaniels-MacBook-Pro:~ nathanielsuchy$ cat ~/Library/Application Support/brave/tor/data/tor.log
cat: /Users/nathanielsuchy/Library/Application: No such file or directory
cat: Support/brave/tor/data/tor.log: No such file or directory
Nathaniels-MacBook-Pro:~ nathanielsuchy$ 

Err, problem!


#4

You’ll have to escape the space so that it doesn’t get passed as two separate arguments to the cat program:

% cat ~/Library/Application\ Support/brave/tor/data/tor.log

Alternatively, just open it in a text editor and copy & paste from there.


#5
Nathaniels-MacBook-Pro:data nathanielsuchy$ cat tor.log
Jul 11 12:14:58.000 [notice] Tor 0.3.3.7 (git-035a35178c92da94) opening new log file.
Jul 11 12:14:58.322 [notice] Tor 0.3.3.7 (git-035a35178c92da94) running on Darwin with Libevent 2.1.8-stable, OpenSSL 1.0.2o, Zlib 1.2.11, Liblzma N/A, and Libzstd N/A.
Jul 11 12:14:58.323 [notice] Tor can't help you if you use it wrong! Learn how to be safe at https://www.torproject.org/download/download#warning
Jul 11 12:14:58.323 [notice] Configuration file "/nonexistent" not present, using reasonable defaults.
Jul 11 12:14:58.338 [notice] Scheduler type KISTLite has been enabled.
Jul 11 12:14:58.339 [notice] Opening Socks listener on 127.0.0.1:9250
Jul 11 12:14:58.340 [notice] Opening Control listener on 127.0.0.1:0
Jul 11 12:14:58.340 [notice] Control listener listening on port 49389.
Jul 11 12:14:58.000 [notice] Bootstrapped 0%: Starting
Jul 11 12:14:59.000 [notice] Starting with guard context "default"
Jul 11 12:14:59.000 [notice] Bootstrapped 80%: Connecting to the Tor network
Jul 11 12:14:59.000 [notice] New control connection opened from 127.0.0.1.
Jul 11 12:14:59.000 [notice] Bootstrapped 85%: Finishing handshake with first hop
Jul 11 12:15:00.000 [notice] Bootstrapped 90%: Establishing a Tor circuit
Jul 11 12:15:03.000 [notice] Tor has successfully opened a circuit. Looks like client functionality is working.
Jul 11 12:15:03.000 [notice] Bootstrapped 100%: Done
Jul 11 12:37:05.000 [notice] Your system clock just jumped 238 seconds forward; assuming established circuits no longer work.
Jul 11 12:39:11.000 [notice] No circuits are opened. Relaxed timeout for circuit 54 (a General-purpose client 3-hop circuit in state doing handshakes with channel state open) to 60000ms. However, it appears the circuit has timed out anyway.
Jul 11 12:39:12.000 [notice] Extremely large value for circuit build timeout: 127s. Assuming clock jump. Purpose 14 (Measuring circuit timeout)
Jul 11 12:39:12.000 [notice] Extremely large value for circuit build timeout: 126s. Assuming clock jump. Purpose 14 (Measuring circuit timeout)
Jul 11 12:39:12.000 [notice] Extremely large value for circuit build timeout: 125s. Assuming clock jump. Purpose 14 (Measuring circuit timeout)
Jul 11 12:39:12.000 [notice] Extremely large value for circuit build timeout: 124s. Assuming clock jump. Purpose 14 (Measuring circuit timeout)
Jul 11 12:39:12.000 [notice] Extremely large value for circuit build timeout: 123s. Assuming clock jump. Purpose 14 (Measuring circuit timeout)
Jul 11 12:39:13.000 [notice] Our IP address has changed.  Rotating keys...
Jul 11 12:39:15.000 [notice] Tor has successfully opened a circuit. Looks like client functionality is working.
Jul 11 12:39:15.000 [notice] Tor has successfully opened a circuit. Looks like client functionality is working.
Jul 11 12:46:09.000 [notice] Tor has not observed any network activity for the past 112 seconds. Disabling circuit build timeout recording.
Jul 11 12:46:10.000 [notice] Our IP address has changed.  Rotating keys...
Jul 11 12:46:11.000 [notice] Tor now sees network activity. Restoring circuit build timeout recording. Network was down for 113 seconds during 1 circuit attempts.
Jul 11 13:05:37.000 [notice] Our IP address has changed.  Rotating keys...
Jul 11 13:11:36.000 [notice] Your system clock just jumped 148 seconds forward; assuming established circuits no longer work.
Jul 11 13:14:51.000 [notice] Your system clock just jumped 144 seconds forward; assuming established circuits no longer work.
Jul 11 13:14:54.000 [notice] Tor has successfully opened a circuit. Looks like client functionality is working.
Jul 11 13:14:54.000 [notice] Tor has successfully opened a circuit. Looks like client functionality is working.
Jul 11 13:21:58.000 [notice] Your system clock just jumped 199 seconds forward; assuming established circuits no longer work.
Jul 11 13:23:17.000 [notice] Tor has not observed any network activity for the past 501 seconds. Disabling circuit build timeout recording.
Jul 11 13:23:17.000 [notice] Tor now sees network activity. Restoring circuit build timeout recording. Network was down for 501 seconds during 2 circuit attempts.
Jul 11 13:23:19.000 [notice] Tor has successfully opened a circuit. Looks like client functionality is working.
Jul 11 13:23:19.000 [notice] Tor has successfully opened a circuit. Looks like client functionality is working.
Jul 11 13:26:04.000 [notice] Our IP address has changed.  Rotating keys..

Got the log


#6

Does it usually happen after you have suspended and resumed the machine? If so, it is to be expected that it may take a minute or two to realize that is on a different local network and to reestablish a connection to the Tor network.

However, if it happens when you have not suspended and resumed, then the lines like

Jul 11 12:37:05.000 [notice] Your system clock just jumped 238 seconds forward; assuming established circuits no longer work.

are suspicious and may suggest something is wrong with your system clock.

Can you get the tor log out of the Tor Browser for comparison? Hit the onion button in the toolbar, select ‘Tor Network Settings’, and hit ‘Copy Tor Log to Clipboard’. It is possible that the Tor Browser is seeing the same hiccups, but Brave is more aggressive about reporting potential network problems — I’m not sure.