Whonix vs Tor Browser Bundle vs Tails...which offers the greatest anonymity?

Discussion in 'privacy technology' started by DesuMaiden, Jan 9, 2014.

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  1. DesuMaiden

    DesuMaiden Registered Member

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    I was just wondering. Some people say Whonix isn't as scare as most people think. Also I haven't see any proof that Tails is more secure than Tor Browser Bundle (TBB). Overall, I haven't see any proof that Whonix and Tails are more secure than TBB.

    According to ip-check.info, Whonix and Tail's Tor Browser is less secure than Tor Browser Bundle. That's because Whonix and Tails has more red and yellow fields than Tor Browser Bundle.

    So what do you guys say? Or am I incorrect?
     
  2. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

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    TBB, Tails and Whonix have different goals, and different target audiences.

    TBB is targeted at casual users, and anonymity (all users looking alike, and preventing tracking) is its main goal. That's also JonDo's main goal, so it's not surprising that TBB scores best on their test site.

    Tails and Whonix are both targeted at sophisticated users, but their goals are different. While both strive for anonymity, Tails focuses on amnesia, although there is an option for saving stuff when run from a USB flash drive. Whonix, on the other hand, focuses more on security, by isolating Tor and apps in separate VMs.
     
  3. DesuMaiden

    DesuMaiden Registered Member

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    I'm a causal user of Tor so I guess I'm going to stick with TBB. Thanks for the info, mirimir.
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2014
  4. adrelanos

    adrelanos Registered Member

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    What is the definition of proof here? What would you accept as valid proof?

    This isn't arm wrestling where one opponent is better than the other one, where one wins and one loses. I am afraid I have to say, I don't think there can be any "more secure than". it's not that simple, it depends. There are certain requirements one may have, threat models one can make up, and there are facts about these systems. Facts about differences, conceptual and technical. Easier ones that can be verified with low effort and ones that can be verified with more knowledge. The more one understands about these things, the more educated decision one can make in which system to choose.

    Can only speak for Whonix, but Whonix and TBB shouldn't have any differences with respect to browser fingerprinting (on ip-check.info or any check page). Because Whonix is using Tor Browser. [WIth the only difference, that it uses Tor running on Whonix-Gateway, not the one that comes with TBB - ip-check.info (or similar pages) have no way to detect that.]

    For my comments on ip-check.info in general, see:
    https://anonymous-proxy-servers.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=7319

    I am wondering how many man hours world wide are wasted discussing that page is creating. Scaring users into believing something could be wrong, doing research, discussion in forum, developers constantly explaining what it is about, and so forth.

    You get more "green" by using JonDoFox. Accidentally, ip-check.info and JonDoFox come from the same producer. You should not count "more red vs more green", because for example a "red IP" would be a much more serious concern than "red tab history".

    Let's waste some more time discussing ip-check.info.

    Using TBB, hovering over TAB history.

    "Using the attribute history length, this website can see how many pages you have visited before."

    "Recommended: The number of visited pages should be reset to 2 whenever you change to a new domain.

    Firefox: Update to Version 4 or higher. Open about:config and set browser.sessionhistory.max_entries to 2."

    Yeah. Great. But... Every time I used TBB no matter where it was always 5. So this value can not be used for anything. All TBB users are uniform. What's the matter? Why does it get an orange color, not green?

    I did try to talk to them (link above) about these issues. They are still recommend using TorButton to TBB users. Exactly that I complained about months before. They replied. Now I see it was ignored. I am tired for repeating myself and gave up, because I am not sure anymore they really want to make that a fair check where JonDoFox has no advantage.

    There are lots of people out there having concern. Putting energy into that page and research and workarounds and so forth. If you want to use your energy for something truly useful, forget about ip-check.info. Maybe use it as a source for inspiration what tests one could do. Start a Free Software project, share the source code, invite others to add new tests, to fix bugs. Having such test pages is a nice service, but it shouldn't compete with commercial interests.
     
  5. The Red Moon

    The Red Moon Registered Member

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    Doesnt whonix use tor in some way(the whonix gateway).
     
  6. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

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    Yes.

    But it's not your typical TransPort (transparent proxy) gateway setup. There's a different SocksPort for each app running in the workstation, which provides stream isolation.
     
  7. caspian

    caspian Registered Member

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    From what I have understood, with Whonix, you don't have to worry about Javascript and that sort of thing. And I think that it would be more impervious to malware than the TBB. Although opening the TBB in Sanboxie is evidently pretty darn good.

    I am not too interested in Tails since you cannot start a VPN on your computer first. I prefer to run Tor through a VPN when I use it. Which hasn't been often. But I am thinking about using it more often. I just have to get use to using a virtual machine.
     
  8. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

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    @caspian

    Whonix is a good way to start using VMs, because there's no setup involved. You just install VirtualBox, import the VM images, and start the VMs.
     
  9. Paranoid Eye

    Paranoid Eye Registered Member

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    I enjoy whonix but find it can be a bit of a headache to get it started more so if one is restarting and switching the pc on and off regularly.

    I keep my PC virus and spyware clean and keep to the basics and my VPN IP and DNS leaks are fixed, do you think its ok to go back to using TBB package?

    Felt more lazy friendly :D
     
  10. zero_Phil

    zero_Phil Registered Member

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    Is there anywhere you can download all of the older versions of TBB?
     
  11. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

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    The risk of leaks between non-Tor and Tor is much greater using TBB than with Whonix.
     
  12. Paranoid Eye

    Paranoid Eye Registered Member

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    thanks think ill stick to whonix
     
  13. caspian

    caspian Registered Member

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    Thanks yes. I am using it right now. It's pretty cool. I did learn how to do the update and the upgrade. But evidently this version of whonix is unable to update the new tor browser. So I learned how to manually install it. So I learned a little something new and am gaining a better understanding of how it works.

    It won't install pidgin either and I haven't found instructions for a manual install yet. I used sudo apt-get install pidgin on my older portable version of Whonix and it worked. but not on the current version that I have installed on my computer.

    So my plan is to play around with Whonix a little and then start on your tutorial.
     
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