Tor's Bug Smash Fund: Progress So Far
Published on April 1, 2020 by Al Smith
Admin

All contributions made to the Tor Project's Open Collective go towards our Bug Smash Fund. This fund ensures that the Tor Project has a healthy reserve earmarked for maintenance work and smashing the bugs necessary to keep Tor Browser, the Tor network, and the many tools that rely on Tor strong, safe, and running smoothly. Below we are sharing an update, which is a modified version of the a Tor blog post originally published January 21, 2020.

We want to share an update on some of the work the Bug Smash Fund has made possible.

So far, we’ve marked 77 tickets with BugSmashFund. As of today, 56 of those tickets have been closed, and 21 of them are still in progress. With this reserve, we’ve been able to fix bugs and complete necessary maintenance on core tor, bridgedb, Snowflake, and Metrics, as well as complete the Tor Browser ESR 68 migration. Roughly half of the Bug Smash Fund remains available for allocation, and we will continue to tag relevant maintenance work and bug fixing tickets that will be covered with this reserve. Thanks for supporting this work!

Below is a full list of the tickets we’ve closed so far.

Tor Browser – ESR Migration

Tor Browser is built on the Firefox Extended Series Release. When a new ESR is available, we migrate Tor Browser (both desktop and Android), which requires significant attention from the Tor Browser team. The Bug Smash Fund covered the following tickets associated with the ESR 68 migration completed in late 2019.

Anti-Censorship

Bridges are Tor relays that help people circumvent censorship against the Tor network. For several reasons, people may want to ask for a bridge via email, and for these circumstances, we have the [email protected] distribution method. When somebody emails [email protected] from a riseup or Gmail account, the account replies with a bridge. The Bug Smash Fund helped fix bugs related to this mechanism.

Snowflake is a new system to defeat censorship. The Bug Smash Fund also helped us to work on a spec that will contribute to the process of collecting metrics on Snowflake.

Core Tor

The Bug Smash Fund has helped the Network team to fix many bugs—from circuit padding to onion services to documentation—as well as backport many previous bug fixes.

Metrics

This fund made it possible for the Metrics team to improve tooling, as well as fix a bug in the Tor network data collecting service, CollecTor.

Thank you to everybody who made a contribution to the Bug Smash Fund. This work is critical in helping us to provide safer tools for millions of people around the world exercising their human rights to privacy and freedom online.