Tor is a free browser that allows for a more secure way of browsing the internet as it conceals the users location. Since it is an open source software it is also difficult to hide malware in it. Although this is a solid performing software there are instances when certain issues can occur which we will be addressing today. In this latest installment of our troubleshooting series we will tackle the Tor secure connection failed in Windows 10 issue.
Before performing any of the recommended troubleshooting steps listed below it’s best to restart your computer and router first. This action refreshes the operating system and remove any corrupt temporary data that could be causing the problem.
Check if you have more than one instance of Tor running
One of the common causes of this problem is when you have another instance of the browser running. Make sure you have only one instance of the browser running. To be sure you can restart your computer then open the Tor browser.
Turn off the antivirus
Another factor that can cause this problem is interference from the antivirus program. To check if this is the culprit you should deactivate your antivirus software.
If you are using Windows Security
- Select Start – Settings > Update & Security – Windows Security – Virus & threat protection > Manage settings
- Switch Real-time protection to Off.
If you are using Avast
- Search for the Avast icon in your computer’s system tray and right-click on it.
- Click on Avast shields control.
- Locate the options to disable the program – the options are to disable it for 10 minutes, an hour, until the computer is restarted or permanently (until you yourself turn it back on). Select whatever option suits you best and use it to disable the program.
If you are using AVG
- Search for the AVG icon in your computer’s system tray and right-click on it.
- Click on Temporarily disable AVG protection.
- Choose how long you want AVG to be turned off and whether you want AVG to disable its Firewall too.
- Click on OK to disable the antivirus program.
If you are using McAfee
- Search for the McAfee Antivirus icon in your computer’s system tray and right-click on it.
- Click on Exit.
- You should see a dialog box warning you that McAfee‘s protection will be turned off. Click on Yes in this dialog box to disable the antivirus program
If the issue does not occur after turning off the antivirus then I suggest that you turn on the antivirus then add Tor in its exception list.
- Click the Windows button and in the search bar type “Windows defender”.
- Open the application named “Windows Defender Security Center”.
- Select the option “Virus and threat protection”.
- Go to Virus and Threat Protection Settings. Windows may prompt you to allow an administrator access to use this feature. If so, press Yes.
- Search the window which says “Add or remove exclusions”. Click it and you will be navigated to a menu where you can add exclusions.
- Click on the option which says “Exclude a folder” and navigate to your Tor directory. Once you reach the location select the folder and save changes.
- Open Bitdefender and go to the Protection Window by clicking the shield icon shown below in the picture.
- Click on the link which says View Modules.
- Click on the Settings icon which you can see on the upper right corner of the antivirus.
- Go to the Exclusions tab present in the window.
- Click on “List of files and folders excluded from scanning”.
- Click on the ADD button. Navigate to your Tor directory and select the folder to exclude it from the scanning process. You should also select the Both option before you add an exception
- Click Add and save changes.
- Open the Avast interface.
- Click on Settings found at the bottom left corner of the screen.
- From Settings, browse to General and scroll down the options until you find Exclusions.
- Expand the section and you will see a dialogue where you can add global exceptions. Navigate to your Tor directory using the option of Browse.
- Once you have selected the Tor folder, click on ADD found at the bottom left side of the screen. Press OK and it is now added to global exceptions of Avast antivirus.
- Open McAfee Antivirus by clicking on its icon present on the toolbar on the bottom right side of your Windows.
- Click on Manage Security.
- Select the option of Schedule and run scans option present in the box of Virus and Spyware Protection.
- Select the option of Schedules scans from the list of options that follow. A new window will open and from there you will see the Add button present under the tab of Excluded Files and Folders. Select the Tor directory after clicking Add through the file explorer.
- Once you reach the location select the folder and save changes.
- Open Kaspersky AV from the icon present in your taskbar at the bottom right of the screen.
- Navigate to the Settings menu.
- Select the tab of Additional and select the tab of Threats and Exclusions from the list of options given.
- Click on the Configure Exclusions present in the middle of the screen.
- Select the option of Add present in the bottom right of the screen.
- Now navigate to the Tor directory using the Browse button. Once you reach the location select the folder and save changes.
- Open your Malwarebytes window by either clicking on the icon in the taskbar located at the bottom right side of the screen, or by clicking the program’s launch file.
- Once the program is opened, click on the Malware Exclusions tab located on the left side of the window.
- In this tab, you find an option which says “Add folder”. Click it and you will be navigated to File Explorer from where you can select your Tor directory.
Once done, try checking if the secure connection failed error still occurs.
Turn off the firewall
There’s a possibility that the problem is caused by the firewall. To check if this is the case try to turn off the firewall.
Open Run with the Windows key + R.
Enter ‘Control Panel’ in Run’s text box, and click the OK button.
Then enter ‘firewall’ in the Control Panel’s search box, and click Windows Defender Firewall to open further options.
Click Turn Windows Defender Firewall on or off.
Select both the Turn off Windows Defender Firewall options, and press the OK button.
Try checking if the Tor secure connection problem still occurs. If it doesn’t then you will need to allow the browser to communicate through the firewall.
Type “firewall” in the search box.
Then select to open Allow an app through Windows Firewall.
Press the Change settings button to adjust the options.
Select both the check boxes for the Tor software on the Allowed apps list that the “Windows Firewall has blocked some features” alert keeps popping up for.
Click the OK button.
The problem could be caused by some corrupted files in the browser which is why you should try to do a reinstallation.
Go to the Windows start menu then Settings then Apps .
In the list of your installed programs, look for Tor and Tor-related applications.
Single click on each of them and select uninstall.
Confirm the removal.
Then press Windows key + R, type regedit, and press Enter.
Open Edit tab and select Find.
Type Tor in the search address and check if there are any related keys. Remove all of them.
Execute the file you downloaded to extract the Tor Browser into a folder on your computer (or pendrive).
Then simply open the folder and click to start Tor Browser.
Try checking if the Tor secure connection failed issue still occurs.
Other steps to try
You should confirm if the computer you are using is connected to the internet.
Check if your ISP is blocking your connection to the TOR network.
Make sure your computer has the correct time and date.
Make sure you are not behind a restrictive corporate firewall.
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