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Running Tor on Android

Some apps, such as Tor Browser or Cups Messenger, have Tor built in. They do not require additional software or configurations to utilize Tor. Most apps, however, do not have Tor built in. They require an app called Orbot to be installed in order to utilize Tor.

Running Orbot

Orbot is a system wide proxy for your Android or Graphene device that enables communications over Tor.

  1. Download Orbot from the Play Store , or from F-Droid.

  2. Launch Orbot.

  3. Open the kebab menu in the upper right hand corner and select Settings:

Orbot menu
  1. Make sure the options for Start Orbot on Boot and Allow Background Starts are checked:

Orbot settings
  1. Go back, and tap start:

Orbot start
  1. Orbot will start up the Tor service. Once complete, you will see:

Orbot started
  1. That’s it. Certain apps, such as Firefox or DuckDuckGo will now just work. Other apps, however, require that Orbot be running VPN mode.

Orbot VPN mode

To utilize Tor, most apps require that Orbot be running in VPN mode.

  1. Disable Private DNS on your device. To do so, navigate to:

    Settings > Network & Internet > Advanced > Private DNS > Off

Private DNS off

Toggle Private DNS to “off”

  1. Launch Orbot and toggle VPN Mode on:

Orbot vpn mode

Toggle VPN Mode to “on”

Under Tor-Enabled Apps, click the gear icon and add apps you want to utilize Tor.

Orbot apps

Examples of applications that need this feature are:

  • Bitwarden

  • Element

  • Zeus

You can also add the following browsers to the Tor-Enabled Apps list to easily access Tor addresses (.onion URLs):

  • Chrome

  • Brave