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DNS over Tor

If you do not want to disclose your IP address to the resolver, you can use our Tor onion service. Resolving DNS queries through the Tor network guarantees a significantly higher level of anonymity than making the requests directly. Not only does doing so prevent the resolver from ever seeing your IP address, but it also prevents your ISP from knowing that you attempted to resolve a domain name.

Read more about this service in this blog post.

​​ Setting up a Tor client

The important difference between using all other modes of DNS and this one is that packet routing no longer uses IP addresses, and therefore all connections must be routed through a Tor client.

Before you start, head to the Tor Project website to download and install a Tor client. If you use the Tor Browser, it will automatically start a SOCKS proxy at

If you use Tor from the command line, create the following configuration file:

$ SOCKSPort 9150

Then you can run tor with:

$ tor -f tor.conf

Also, if you use the Tor Browser, you can head to the resolver’s address to see the usual page:


If you ever forget’s address, use cURL to retrieve it:

$ curl -sI | grep -i alt-svc
alt-svc: h2="dns4torpnlfs2ifuz2s2yf3fc7rdmsbhm6rw75euj35pac6ap25zgqad.onion:443"; ma=315360000; persist=1

​​ Setting up a local DNS proxy using socat

Of course, not all DNS clients support connecting to the Tor client, so the easiest way to connect any DNS-speaking software to the hidden resolver is by forwarding ports locally, for instance using socat.

​​ DNS over TCP, TLS, and HTTPS

The hidden resolver is set up to listen on TCP ports 53 and 853 for DNS over TCP and TLS. After setting up a Tor proxy, run the following socat command as a privileged user, replacing the port number appropriately:

$ PORT=853; socat TCP4-LISTEN:${PORT},reuseaddr,fork SOCKS4A:${PORT},socksport=9150

From here, you can follow the regular guide for setting up, except you should always use instead of If you need to access the proxy from another device, simply replace in socat commands with your local IP address.

​​ DNS over HTTPS

As explained in the blog post, our favorite way of using the hidden resolver is using DNS over HTTPS (DoH). To set it up:

  1. Download cloudflared by following the guide for connecting to using DNS over HTTPS clients.

  2. Start a Tor SOCKS proxy and use socat to forward port TCP:443 to localhost:

$ socat TCP4-LISTEN:443,reuseaddr,fork SOCKS4A:,socksport=9150
  1. Instruct your machine to treat the .onion address as localhost:
cat << EOF >> /etc/hosts dns4torpnlfs2ifuz2s2yf3fc7rdmsbhm6rw75euj35pac6ap25zgqad.onion
  1. Finally, start a local DNS over UDP daemon:
$ cloudflared proxy-dns --upstream "https://dns4torpnlfs2ifuz2s2yf3fc7rdmsbhm6rw75euj35pac6ap25zgqad.onion/dns-query"
INFO[0000] Adding DNS upstream url="https://dns4torpnlfs2ifuz2s2yf3fc7rdmsbhm6rw75euj35pac6ap25zgqad.onion/dns-query"
INFO[0000] Starting DNS over HTTPS proxy server addr="dns://localhost:53"
INFO[0000] Starting metrics server addr=""