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Anonabox FAWKES Tor Router Review

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Anonabox FAWKES TOR Router Software:

Status Section:

When you first log into the Anonabox FAWKES, you are greeted with the Status page. The Status page gives you a quick glance at the operation of the Anonabox FAWKES. Some of this information has the host information, including IP addresses, version of kernel for the firmware, up-time, CPU and memory usage, and more. You can also get a quick glance at the wireless statistics. In addition, there are a few other sections we won't go too much into, such as editing the firewall, adding static routes, viewing logs, etc.

One section under Status, however, which will be very useful, is the TOR Status section. Clicking on that link brings you to the TOR status page, which lets you quickly see if TOR is connected, the circuits, and the versions. In case you are unaware of what TOR is, it stands for The Onion Router due to the way the process works. TOR selects multiple nodes from their advertised list of active nodes. This creates a circuit, and when the payload is wrapped and encrypted, each node of information is encrypted over the previous node. When the traffic is sent, the receiving node will decrypt and strip off a "layer" of the encryption, revealing the next node's information. It then sends the payload to that next node, which does the same thing, like peeling layers off an onion, and thus the name The Onion Router.

Each node only knows the next hop and nothing beyond that, which leads to its security and anonymity, so if a node is compromised, it will only be able to see the data for the next hop and not further down the line, like the destination. This process was originally developed by United States Naval Research Laboratory for the purpose of protecting sensitive intelligence communications, but later was taken over by the TOR Foundation.




System Section:

Next, we move on over to the System section of the Anonabox UI. The System section allows you to edit settings to tailor the product to best suit your needs. In the System section, you can edit the hostname, NTP settings, passwords, SSH access (should you choose to get really down and dirty in the command line), install additional software, configure the LED, and the all-important flashing the firmware. Anonabox releases new firmware from time to time, adding to the functionality.





Network Section:

We are going to skip over the Services section for now and look at the Network section of the UI. There is a lot going on in the Network section to allow you to configure the Anonabox FAWKES for your needs. As mentioned earlier, the FAWKES supports both wired and wireless communication and wireless includes both client mode for connecting to other wireless access points and AP mode for your devices to connect to it. This allows you to use a wide array of devices, including phones, tablets, laptops, and more, with ease. In the Interfaces sub-menu, you can create new interfaces and edit existing ones, including bridging them, if you so desire. This includes both the wireless and wired connections and the built-in switching module. In the DNS and DHCP settings, you can tailor them to your networking needs and ensure that your traffic is secure by using specified settings. You can also edit the hosts file for custom DNS and specify static routes, should you need it.








Now that we have the gist of the settings out of the way, let's move over and look at the Services section, where the meat of the Anonabox FAWKES resides.

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