Opened 5 weeks ago

Last modified 5 weeks ago

#32438 new defect

Inconsistent failure-then-success bootstrap behavior with clock set 24h in the past

Reported by: intrigeri Owned by: brade
Priority: Medium Milestone:
Component: Core Tor/Tor Version:
Severity: Normal Keywords: bootstrap, clock-skew, usability, ux, s8-errors, AffectsTails
Cc: brade, mcs, intrigeri Actual Points:
Parent ID: #23508 Points:
Reviewer: Sponsor:

Description

Context: I'm investigating which part of Tails' crazy clock fixing dance we can remove thanks to https://trac.torproject.org/projects/tor/ticket/24661. Corresponding Tails ticket: https://redmine.tails.boum.org/code/issues/16471.

Environment: Tor Browser 9.0.1 x86_64 on Debian unstable, clock set 24h before UTC. Tested both with direct connection to the Tor network and with bridges.

The first time I click "Connect" in Tor Launcher, I see a bootstrapping error (see attached screenshot and Tor logs):

Tor failed to establish a Tor network connection.

Loading authority certificates failed (Clock skew -81944 in microdesc flavor consensus from CONSENSUS - ?).

I guess that's kind of expected despite the improvements implemented as part of https://trac.torproject.org/projects/tor/ticket/24661.

But then, if I click "Reconfigure" and then "Connect", tor bootstraps successfully. This surprises me and feels inconsistent: the way I see it, either the clock is skewed enough for tor to fail bootstrapping, and then it should not succeed on second try; or tor can somehow deal with skewed clock, and then it should succeed on first try.

Child Tickets

Attachments (2)

tor-launcher-clock_skew.png (42.9 KB) - added by intrigeri 5 weeks ago.
tor-launcher-clock_skew.log (4.8 KB) - added by intrigeri 5 weeks ago.

Download all attachments as: .zip

Change History (4)

Changed 5 weeks ago by intrigeri

Attachment: tor-launcher-clock_skew.png added

Changed 5 weeks ago by intrigeri

Attachment: tor-launcher-clock_skew.log added

comment:1 Changed 5 weeks ago by mcs

Status: newneeds_information

Shouldn't this be a Core Tor ticket? Tor Launcher simply reports errors or accepts "success" as reported by Tor.

comment:2 in reply to:  1 Changed 5 weeks ago by intrigeri

Component: Applications/Tor LauncherCore Tor/Tor
Status: needs_informationnew

Replying to mcs:

Shouldn't this be a Core Tor ticket? Tor Launcher simply reports errors or accepts "success" as reported by Tor.

Yeah, that's what I thought, but I was not self-confident enough to trust my hunch, so I've reported this bug against the piece of software where the user-visible behavior seems wrong. You're the expert here so I've tried to adjust the ticket metadata accordingly. Dear network team, please bear with my lack of familiarity with your Trac workflow!

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