Tor Hardware Privacy Adapter


The Janus team have published a preview of their new Privacy Adapter. It’s a small two port router. You just plug it in-line between your computer/switch and your internet connection. It will then anonymize all of you traffic via the Tor network. You can also use it with OpenVPN. The hardware appears to be a Gumstix computer mounted to a daughtercard with two ethernet ports. It will have a web configuration just like a standard router. This looks like a great plug-n-play privacy device. The only improvement we would suggest is adding auto-detect so a crossover cable isn’t required.

Janus is responsible for JanusVM, a virtual machine designed to protect your privacy with technologies like Tor and OpenVPN.

[via @hdmoore]

33 thoughts on “Tor Hardware Privacy Adapter

  1. Kind of off topic, but does anybody know any forums or websites with other gumstix projects? I’ve searched around a bit but can’t find much. They seem perfect for a hand held web tablet or something similar.

  2. superjdynamite:

    I use Tor occasionally. I also run an exit node. (This makes IRC fun and exciting!)
    Sometimes you’ll luck out and get a circuit composed of several high-bandwidth machines. However, much of the time, you’ll get circuits composed of machines -like mine- that transmit @ 20 Kbyte/s.
    I also find that tor takes a few minutes to “warm up” after I first start using it. There’s some mumbo-jumbo behind “establishing a circuit” that I’m sure a Tor developer could clue us all in about.

  3. I can see a real market for these in Aus if the mandatory filter takes hold…Tor might be slower than normal browsing, and this might still need to be ironed out some BUT its better than the alternative

  4. This would be good for situations where you don’t control the software on the computer, but would still like to access tor (workplaces, schools, internet cafes and libraries). I wonder if this works with hidden services.

  5. JanusPA is now selling. The website has been updated. I would recommend reading the FAQ, it’s very informative as to what it can be used for and how to use it.

    Two power options: USB or an AC outlet.
    The USB doubles as an Ethernet connection.

    Just to sum it, you can use it for a single PC or a whole network. The choice is yours.

  6. I live in China where ALL web traffic is censored. I have many friends in Taiwan and to be able to chat with them, or even read their blogs, I have to use tor. So tor is a must have for foreigners in China.

  7. Wow, must have missed this one, nice little device.
    A further improvement would be support for I2P and similar encrypted networks.
    Guess this could be V2, since it looks like they are now selling this one.

  8. On the survey for the website it says
    “q: would you buy a pre-built januspa for $150?
    584 people said ‘yes’
    505 people said ‘no’

    Also from the website if you click “no” on the survey, it says
    “that’s sad. :(
    there is always ‘tor vm’ or ‘janusvm’ which are both free software solutions.” which has links to both of those projects.

    Sell it for $19.99? It’s a portable router, not a usb flash drive, and I’m sure that free software is making them money…not. If $150 is too rich for your blood, you can always get the free version, janusvm or tor vm.

    Anyone who has tried to make a living on freeware knows it doesn’t work out well. If these guys are selling hardware to try and compensate for the freeware they release, more power to them. After looking at how many people voted Yes, I suspect they are not doing too bad, possibly doing quite well.

  9. Tor is really unusably slow 90% of time, so its just not practical. Not for web surfing and especially not for any kind of live or dynamic content.

    As for less bandwidth intensive traffic like messaging/chat its a nice idea.

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