Greetings wonderful carbon-based residents of the Internet. I’m pleased to announce the 1.4.0 release of Stem!
What is Stem, you ask? For those who aren’t familiar with it Stem is a Python library for interacting with Tor. With it you can script against your relay, descriptor data, or even write applications similar to Nyx and Vidalia.
So what’s new in this release?
Ephemeral Hidden Services and Descriptors
Tor’s 0.2.7.1 release is bringing with it new hidden service capabilities, most notably ADD_ONION and HSFETCH. Ephemeral hidden services let you easily operate a hidden service that never touches disk.
This latest Tor release also brought with it the ability to retrieve a hidden service’s descriptor information. Stem knows how to parse, validate, and decrypt these documents.
Faster Descriptor Parsing
When reading descriptors without validation (which is the new default), documents are now lazily parsed. This provides a very substantial speedup depending on the document’s type…
- Server descriptors: 27% faster
- Extrainfo descriptors: 71% faster
- Microdescriptors: 43% faster
- Consensus: 37% faster
Prefer to keep validation? No problem! Just include ‘validate = True‘ and
you’ll be good to go.
As always this is just the tip of the iceberg. For a full rundown on the myriad of improvements and fixes in this release see our change log.