What is TOR and why is the browser slow
First of all you have to talk about what is the TOR network. The acronyms come from The Onion Router, which in Spanish can be translated as onion routing. It basically means that our connection passes through many nodes until it reaches its final destination. There are many layers that prevent personal data from being leaked. For example, if we enter a destination web page, it would not know where that connection comes from.
The TOR network is used to connect to the Dark or Deep Web. For this it is possible to use the tor browser, which will also serve to improve privacy when browsing and hide information such as the real IP address.
Having explained how the TOR network works we can understand a little better why Tor browser is slow. Due to its own operation, due to the fact that the connection travels through multiple nodes until it reaches the destination, it causes it not to be as fluid as if we were browsing from Chrome or Firefox without further ado.
But not only its own operation influences, as we can imagine. The truth is that there are factors that will affect performance, such as having an outdated browser, a bad configuration or that there are even other programs that may interfere.
Steps to improve speed
So what can we do to make the Tor browser run fast and there are no outages? We will explain some advice interesting that we can put into practice. In this way we will ensure that entering a website or downloading a file is not torture due to its slowness.
Configure security options
This must be taken with caution, since what we are going to do is change the security levels browser. For this we have to go to Options and enter the Security and privacy section. Once there we will find different options and one of them is Security level.
There we will have several levels: standard, safest and the safest of all. This is to enable or disable different features. The less we have enabled, the better for security. But of course, performance can also be affected, which is what we care about in this article.
Have the browser updated
We have the last version Tor browser installed? This is really important. We are not only talking about speed, but also about safety itself. It is essential to always have everything updated, but even more so in programs that we are going to use to connect to the Internet.
The best thing is to have the updates configured automatically. In this way, as soon as we enter the browser, it will install new versions if they are available. We can verify it if we enter Options and, in the General section, we go to Tor Browser Updates. We have to check the option to Allow updates automatically.
Improve the speed of the network itself
But sometimes the speed problem with Tor is not because of the browser or because it is browsing through nodes. Sometimes the cause is a problem with our own connection. For example, if we are connected by Wi-Fi and the signal is weak, specific errors usually appear, especially when browsing with this type of program.
So what can we do? If we are connected wirelessly and we want to improve the signal, something we can use is a Wi-Fi repeater. We can also use PLC devices or Mesh systems. All three types of devices enhance the signal and allow the connection to go further.
Now, improving the Internet connection is not only putting an amplifier, but also taking advantage of the available resources. For example, something that can affect is if at the same time we are browsing Tor we are downloading large files or we are using the cloud.
Control security programs
Another issue to take into account is to control security programs that we have installed and that may be affecting the speed when browsing Tor. For example we speak of a antivirus or a firewall. With both types of applications we could have certain problems.
Sometimes the firewall can block the connection and make Tor run slower. Also the antivirus could be blocking that connection if it thinks it is a threat. For this reason, we must control the programs that we have installed.
As an example of antivirus we can name Windows Defender, Avast or Bitdefender. Our advice is to never have more than one antivirus installed on the computer, as this could generate conflict and further affect the speed of the connection.
Use or not a proxy
One option offered by Tor is to access the Internet through a proxy. We can configure this if we are interested. It can be one of the reasons why the connection is slow, so we must configure it correctly and use a good proxy.
To do this we have to go to Options, we enter the Tor tab and once there we go down to Advanced. There we will see the proxy section, where we can mark or not the option and fill in the data with the proxy that interests us. We can choose one that works well, that is fast. On the Internet we can find many different ones and check their performance. In this way we will always have the one that offers greater speed and fewer cuts.
In short, the Tor browser usually works slower than if we open a website from Chrome or download a file. However, we can take into account some tips that can improve the connection and avoid cuts and speed failures. Some small changes, as we have seen, can serve to make the connection faster.