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[liberationtech] Questions on upcoming next-gen onion services

Yosem Companys companys at
Sat Feb 11 11:06:04 PST 2017

Subject: Questions on the coming next-gen onion services
From: David Goulet <dgoulet at> via tor-talk at

On 11 Feb (06:14:34), Lolint wrote:
> Hi


> I have some questions about the coming switch to next-gen onion services:
> o What will happen to current onion services? Will they all be simply
> discontinued or will there be a process by which they will be
> built again to form next-gen onions?

The current services will still function for a while before we actually
the support from tor. And that "while" will be few years at least. Both
versions will live in parallel so you'll be able to have current service and
next-gen service on the same tor instance.

Currently, we do not plan to have an automatic transition to a next-gen
address so if you want to create a next-gen address for your service, you'll
have to simply configure a second service in the torrc indicating that you
want the new version. We'll be documenting that process upon release.

> o What will happen to all the relays that are running versions of Tor that
> don't support next-gen onion services?

Good question. Onion services need basically three different type of relays,
HSDir (directory), Intro point (IP) and Rendezvous Point (RP).

The tor 0.3.0 release has the next-gen support for HSDir and IP. For the RP,
the all current relays will work with next-gen. And for IP, next-gen
have a legacy option to use old IPs (<= 0.2.9). It has been put there
for this
transition period where we expect to have unfortunately a lot more tor out
there that don't support next-gen.

What is left is the HSDir that will have to be selected based on the
version advertised by the relay. So at first, there might be very few of
so there will be a period of time before we reached what we call "network
maturity" which will allow us to switch from the current service protocol to
the next-gen for all newly created services.

This post on tor-dev@ kind of explain our intentions (but that might change
overtime of course):


> Thx --Jeff
> --
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