Tor is killing off all v2 domains on October 15th, 2021

on blog at

For the last 15 years or so I've made sure to put all my websites on both the clear web and tor. I liked tor because I believed that I owned my domain name on tor. This is unlike the clear web with DNS and registrars merely leasing you a domain name. But it turns out that even on tor you don't own your domain name.

Today I learned that the Tor project is killing off *all* tor v2 domains in October 2021, a handful of months from now. All of the tor web, the links between sites, the search engine indices, the rankings and reputations for onion domains, they will all disappear in a puff of smoke. I never really owned my tor domain. I owned my keys but The Tor Project owns the domains. And the Tor Project has decided to take my domain away from me.

Yes, I understand why tor v2 is depreciated. The hash of the keys is short enough that brute forcing a prefix to imitiate some v2 address is nearly possible. But v2 has worked alongside v3 just fine for a couple years now. The idea that they have to completely remove it is false.

And the consequences of doing so are dramatic. The very heart of the tor web will be destroyed. All the links, the search indices and rankings, the domain reputations and bookmarks will all disapear. Some of the domains may create a new website using tor v3 but it will have no link back to the v2 version. The web of tor sites will simply disappear. Decades of community building gone in an instant.

I thought tor was useful for owning my domain but I was wrong. I no longer see any reason to run tor onion services and I will not be creating a v3 service like I'd been planning to. I guess nows the time to try i2p.

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1:13:08, Sat May 1, 2021 : /blog/blog.html/, It's not just the key length, there are lots of other vulnerabilities that make v2 onions fundamentally unsound and insecure. It isn't just about you, the host it's also about protecting the identities of the people who installed Tor to browse the internet safely and anonymously. Personally, I don't think that search rankings and reputations are much of a concern since onions are almost exclusively discovered by word-of-mouth, onion-location headers, and webrings. The deprecation period has been very long, any actively updated onion site should have added a v3 link a long time ago. Lastly, of course it's not your domain you're joining a network of volunteer-run servers with a consensus - you can feel free to run your own network if you want complete control of the domain, but it's going to be awfully lonely. Anyway, I hope you change your mind and decide to keep a v3 site, but I'm interested in hearing more about i2p as well
10:47:29, Sun Nov 27, 2022 : /blog/2021-04-30-1.html/, lol