Fresh Onions: Best Tor Link List?

onionscan-transitive

It doesn’t surprise me in the least that you dark web explorers are constantly looking for new links.

I used to often use Harry71’s Onion Spider as a go-to link list when I was looking for new and unusual onion sites. Unfortunately, he no longer updates the site (even though the URL is still active).

That being said, have you heard of the site Fresh Onions? It can be found at http://zlal32teyptf4tvi.onion/.

freshonions

Fresh Onions has its fair share of onion links, and like Harry71’s former site, it’s updated frequently. I was going to take a screenshot of the whole site, but on the device I’m currently using, that function was disabled.

Basically, the list of onions can be sorted by URL, Title, how recently it was added, when it was last visited, or when it was last up (i.e. active). At the time of this writing, it lists 4470 onions, and growing.

So you may be wondering – what kinds of sites are on it?? Well, at first glance, I see a lot of tech sites, some markets, a few forums, and some scam sites. Just what I expected!

While I have yet to create my own onion crawler, here’s a short sampling of some of the sites that are listed on Fresh Onions (note – I make no claim as to the authenticity of any of these; if it sounds like a scam, it probably is.):

http://geekrakaz7kioics.onion – Dark Forum (an anonymous hacking forum)

http://answerstedhctbek.onion – Hidden Answers

http://atmskima36v2nqdc.onion – ATM Skimmer for Sale (likely a scam)

http://hbwc3pyawkeixqtk.onion – DeepHouse – Bienvenue sur DeepHouse!

http://sourcel3zg2kzu4k.onion – Sourcery

http://by5cptxw44znwsbn.onion – Index of /

http://onicoyceokzquk4i.onion – .onion searcher

http://kwf4zz4colvmzb42.onion – Ooga Booga

http://4pf5lakpitrmnpnp.onion – Dungeon Masters: Welcome to Pier!

http://tordox5bgdpmnong.onion – couldn’t connect to this one, but it sounds like a doxing site.

http://nsz6gzlqldxhrvex.onion – NEMESIS Ransomware

http://dark666b5l2e3lcu.onion – Dark Host – real TORland hosting with onion address

Anyhow, if you want to check out the full list, visit the Fresh Onions link above. Have fun, dark web explorers, and don’t get scammed (or kidnapped, for that matter)! I kid.

6446164fc586e94687ab4f5e3c2ec12e--scary-pictures-old-pictures

 

Dark Web Links: New Tor Search Engine!

In some of my past posts, I’ve mentioned that there are a few search engines on Tor that you can use to find .onion links. These vary greatly in quality, but the main search engine that people seem to use is called “not Evil”: http://hss3uro2hsxfogfq.onion – in previous posts, I’ve referred to it as the “Google of Tor.”

NotEvilSearchScreenshot

Beyond not Evil, there’s also Candle, Ahmia, TORCH, and (of course) Grams. In a much earlier post, I interviewed the creator of Candle: A Chat With Jobi – Creator of Candle Search Engine.

One of the differences with Candle is that it gets far fewer results – however, Jobi stated in the interview that he focused on getting more accurate results, rather than the largest number. TORCH gets a reasonable number of results, but in my experience, they aren’t always accurate.

torch_search

Ahmia, on the other hand, gets results on its search engine results page (SERP) that are usually quite accurate, but like Candle, it doesn’t return a large number. One of the things I like about Ahmia is that if the results include something like CP, you can report it and they’ll exclude it from future searches. The same goes for not Evil.

ahmia

Where is the Darkest Search?

So what other search engines exist? Well, one of the link sites I like, called Welcome to Dark Web Links and More, added a search engine to their features. While it doesn’t get as many results as not Evil does, it’s interesting to compare the two and see if they come up with anything different.

welcometodarkweblinks

The actual search engine is located at http://bznjtqphs2lp4xdd.onion, and seems to index onion sites differently than the other search engines, although I couldn’t tell you exactly how the algorithms work. If anyone has a link to a repository for this search engine, I would be curious to find out some more!

One difference I’ve noticed between the WTDWLAM search engine and others is that it has an option called “View This Link with Proxy Redirection For Added Security.” Given that I don’t always trust proxies, because you don’t know who’s spying on your traffic, I hesitate to use this one. Plus, it’s Tor, for God’s sake – why would you need extra security?

2A5mxOZ

Read this WIRED article for more info: Proxy Services Are Not Safe. Try These Alternatives.

Anyhow, I did a few searches with the WTDWLAM search engine, and got quite a few results, although they weren’t always accurate, but that’s to be expected. If you search for the string “red room,” you get 567 results! Are there really 567 red rooms? (Well…no.)

This might be a fun experiment to play around with, and see what mysterious sites you can find. Hint: they probably won’t be much different than the ones you’ve found before.

On the other hand, if you do find anything cool, let me know in the comments!

(Just don’t spam me, OK? Or spam me. I don’t really care.)

Username666_07

Dark Web Links of the Day Pt. 1

blackmarketammo.png

by Ciphas

I’ve been receiving comments on my profile asking if I could post some links, so I’m more than happy to oblige. One thing I should remind my readers about, though – Tor and its darknet brethren are rife with scams. So if anything sounds too good to be true (triple your bitcoin in 2 seconds!!), then it probably is.

TorBay (forum) https://2or24opd2hkebadv.onion

Digital Gangster https://2fwqhlzx5dxiyggr.onion

IDC – Italian Darknet Community https://2qrdpvonwwqnic7j.onion/

Walmart Stuff https://42bu3fd5gaxu3xbn.onion

TorRoulette https://4mxhmvyfba2ji7lb.onion

W38M411 https://23tjl3xpt5btiqms.onion

GRAVES DESIGN https://362jdnvs4w5itsql.onion

A Chat With Jobi – Creator of Candle Search Engine

by Secrets of the Dark

Candle search

Those of you who’ve used the Tor network probably know that it can be very hard to navigate at times, even when using the different pages that share links.  In fact, I too, can relate to this – the first time I used it, I just relied on some of the link lists, which turned out to be semi-disastrous.

It does, of course, have its search engines, including not Evil, Ahmia, Grams, Sinbad, and the search engine in question – Candle, which can be accessed at Candle Search Engine.(Once again, don’t forget to access it through Tor.)

Candle’s memorable motto is “no parentheses, no boolean operators, no quotes, just words.”   I recently interviewed its creator, who goes by the name “Jobi.” If you’re unfamiliar with how search engines work in general, read on, and you’ll gain some insight!

In his words, he chose the name “Candle” because it:

  • “has the right amount of letters
  • Ends with ‘le’
  • Refers to a thing that brings light in darkness…
  • …but not a lot.” Reddit: Candle (a search engine)

46919-Candles-And-Bokeh

This is how I picture Candle – I’m visual that way.

When we spoke initially on Reddit, I had asked Jobi why he wrote Candle.  He said, “I wrote Candle because it was a challenge.  To see if I could do it and how it would turn out.  It was not designed to be a ‘dark net search engine’, just a search engine.  It could index anything.  I chose to index the Tor web for a couple of reasons.  Mostly because it is nice and small.

“Candle runs on a Macbook.  I don’t have fiber connected server farms.  For me, indexing the real web would be like sucking down an ocean through a garden hose; indexing the Tor web is like sucking down a bathtub through a straw.  Neither are ideal but the latter is not impossible.  Also, the Tor web isn’t that well indexed, so it would be more useful.”

If you happen to be on the Tor network and feel lost, I’d recommend trying out Candle; anyhow, on to the meat of the interview!

Secrets of the Dark: What is your background with regard to coding and web development? (i.e. Do you have formal schooling in programming?)

Jobi: Yes. I studied computer science, and have been coding professionally for almost 20 years.

I have very little experience in web development. I can write HTML 1.0 and…some [Javascript], but that’s it. Candle only produces very few different pages; they are pretty much identical and very simple. All self contained, no external resources.

SOTD: What have been your experiences with running a Tor node?  Have you experienced any harassment or difficulties in the process?

J: No.  It just runs by itself.  I have never talked to my ISP about it and they have never contacted me.  Some web sites block me, but none that are important to me.  My relay is not an exit.  It is just a small relay on a low power machine, a single core 16Ghz Atom.

SOTD: Prior to creating Candle, what are some software projects you have worked on?

J: I created a clickable map of the universe of some space RPG.  It uses only HTML and javascript [sic].  I created a thing where you can upload a picture and it converts it into a format suitable to Flash on phones as a boot-up screen.  It uses PHP to invoke shell scripts.  This is probably [the] most serious web development project I’ve done.

SOTD: You said that you ‘wrote Candle because it was a challenge.’  Do you think that the result you came up with was a successful answer to that challenge?

J: I came across a bunch of issues that I didn’t know before I started.  Mostly things that are a bit fuzzy, that you can not just calculate.

It took a lot of tweaking and tuning in order to prevent lots of rubbish in the index, without filtering out good data. Wikis and forums have lots of links that are just not worth crawling. [My sentiments exactly! – Ed.]

I am very conservative about what I consider a ‘word’: Anything under 3 letters is not a word.  Anything with a non-letter in it is not a word.  Anything with more than 3x the same letter in a row is not a word.  Etc…

In the end I’m quite happy with the quality of the index.

SOTD: I’ve noticed that Candle only returns the top 20 search results (as opposed to all of them). Why did you design it this way?

J: It is part of keeping it lightweight. It also prevents Candle from becoming a tool for others to just suck down the entire index.

Having a ‘next page’ button would mean I’d either have to redo the query, or cache results in ‘sessions’.

SOTD: What kind of work do you do professionally? Is it related to software development, or is that a hobby?

J: I’m a software developer. My day to day work happens in C and C++.

SOTD: Even though a developer, like a magician, might ‘never reveal his secrets,’ would you be willing to give a basic explanation of how the Candle search engine is different from other popular search engines?

J: I don’t believe that Candle is ‘more special’ than others. It is different because I didn’t use any standard framework and came up with my own solutions for things like filtering and ranking.

Also, there is nothing secret about it. I just can not open source it because it uses proprietary libraries from work.

SOTD: Would you be willing to talk about yourself a little (like your educational background)?

J: As I said in question #1, I have studied computer science.

But before that I already coded. As a kid, I got an 8 bit micro. It came with a thick manual and I was curious enough to teach myself how to program it. First in BASIC, then in assembler. This was before the Internet was a thing. Later, I got (access to) a PC and started learning Pascal and C.

SOTD: Did you work with others on this project, or was Candle designed solely by you?

J: I did it solely by myself. At first I never even told anyone it was running. At some point [it] was discovered and the number of hits slowly started to ramp up.

SOTD: Have you ever used other anonymity networks besides Tor (like I2P, Freenet, or GNUnet)? If so, what has been your experience with them? (Has it been positive, negative, or something in between?)

J: I have not. I don’t use Tor that much either, but when I do, it works well enough and I don’t have problems.

SOTD: Is there any kind of content that you try to exclude from Candle search results (such as child pornography)?

J: No. That would be a very slippery slope. Once I start filtering out one thing, I implicitly start condoning everything else.

SOTD: What sorts of changes might you make to Candle’s search algorithms so that it could improve (if any)?

J: The crawling is as good as it gets.

The search result ranking is basically good, but I do still tweak it a little bit from time to time. I do not have a very satisfactory strategy to determine the order in which I visit pages. I have way more URLs than I can visit in a reasonable time, but some URLs deserve to be on a higher rotation than others.

I might add [an] ‘onion history’ feature, where it shows when an onion was up/down, when the home page title changed, things like that. I already keep track of some of that, and I would have to look into how clean and useful that data is.

SOTD: Have people in the Reddit community given you good feedback about Candle, or about Tor in general?

J: I have had a bit of good constructive feedback, but most of it was just ‘hey that looks nice’. Nobody was negative about it, i.e. ‘You suck for making this’.

SOTD: What advice might you give to someone who says, ‘I’d like to develop my own search engine – where should I start?’

J: You can always start with a crawler: read a page with links, parse it, extract the links, add those URLs to your list.

Have it crawl for a few hours, then look at your dataset and see what’s in there that shouldn’t [be].

Come up with filtering rules for those and then restart clean. Repeat this until you are happy with the dataset.

You should also determine your feature set early on. For example, in Candle you can only search for individual words, not phrases.

For certain features it might be necessary to keep copies of the content you index. I decided I didn’t want that.

SOTD: You had told me that ‘With Candle, I try to deliver diverse results. It won’t return multiple results from the same onion, or from the same ‘identical/very similar’ onion.” Would it be possible to explain a little about how this is done?

J: When you enter some words, I look up all the URLs that have those words in it. This might contain multiple URLs from the same onion domain. If so, I only keep the ‘best’ one. It also might contain URLs from onions that are mirrors/copies/clones of each other. This is harder to determine.

Since I don’t keep copies of content, I have to base ‘identicality’ on stats and metadata like title, size, number of words, links, etc. (Have you noticed the ‘onion:…’-link underneath each result?)

Which one is the best is based on how often the words occur, how strong those words are, how many words the page has, etc.

SOTD: What projects are you currently developing, or do you plan to develop, if given the time?

J: I got an Arduino for Christmas, so currently my evening hours are devoted to making LEDs flash.

Writing Candle was really just an exercise for myself. I am still surprised about the amount of use it gets every day.

9edcab8725bed60303c07546d5931839

 

(Well Jobi, I’m glad you created it – and I’m sure millions of other Tor users are too!)