Bug #15783

Rephrase "Can I use Tails with a VPN?"

Added by sajolida 2018-08-11 11:43:07 . Updated 2019-06-11 08:34:42 .

Target version:
Start date:
Due date:
% Done:


Feature Branch:
Type of work:
End-user documentation

Affected tool:
Deliverable for:


The short answer is “no” but you have to read tons of text to get that short answer from our FAQ:


This is probably one of the top FAQ (and it’s here to stay) so I think it deservers a bit more attention. The whole section should be rewritten to follow “writing for the web” principles, be succint and favor scannability. For example, by putting the most important information first and the details next (“inverted pyramid”).

In this case, we should explain:

  • First and foremost that it’s not possible (in any of the three cases).
  • Then the three different cases.
  • Then for each case
    • Restate why it’s not possible
    • If it might be in the future (relevant use cases)
    • If we want to support this in the future, point to other relevant documents.

Also refer to other guidelines for writing documentation for Tails: https://tails.boum.org/contribute/how/documentation/guidelines/ (and ask or tell us what needs improvements in these guidelines).


Related issues

Blocks Tails - Feature #17247: Core work 2020Q1 → 2020Q2: Technical writing Confirmed


#1 Updated by Anonymous 2018-08-16 10:12:18

Starter tasks should provide relevant documentation for somebody who wants to pick up the task.

#2 Updated by sajolida 2018-08-16 17:15:42

  • Description updated

I tried to give a bit more detail in the description of the ticket.

#3 Updated by SillyPutty 2018-12-12 16:33:08

This is very disappointing from a user’s point of view. Talk to “old hands” using Tor and they all say the same thing: Use Tor on top of a vpn. Never just Tor!!! This means I have to find a way to connect to vpn outside of Tails, which means running TWO OS’s somehow. Certainly not ideal.

#4 Updated by Dustyb07 2019-04-23 00:27:19

The best way to do this without modifying anything in the tails session is to run the vpn behind tor on the router. Open/dd-wrt has its own documentation on this as well, which can be linked to if needed to allow the user to read the semi-advanced documentation through that site and keeping the FAQ starter friendly.

#5 Updated by cbrownstein 2019-06-05 01:50:38

  • Assignee set to cbrownstein

I’ll take this for now.

#6 Updated by sajolida 2019-06-10 14:45:13

@cbrownstein: If you want to do this as part of the technical writing core work (eg. get paid), please add a “Blocks” relationship to Feature #15941 (until July 1) or Feature #16711 (next quarter). I think it could fit because it’s a very frequent FAQ.

#7 Updated by cbrownstein 2019-06-10 16:13:30

  • blocks Feature #15941: Core work 2018Q4 → 2019Q2: Technical writing added

#8 Updated by sajolida 2019-06-11 08:34:42

We already have some sentences about VPNs on /doc/about/tor (“Why does Tails use Tor?”) what about extending them into a proper section on this page and replace the FAQ entry?

#9 Updated by sajolida 2019-07-18 17:00:56

  • blocks Feature #16711: Core work 2019Q3 → 2019Q4: Technical writing added

#10 Updated by sajolida 2019-07-18 17:00:58

  • blocked by deleted (Feature #15941: Core work 2018Q4 → 2019Q2: Technical writing)

#11 Updated by sajolida 2020-01-05 16:26:55

  • blocks Feature #17247: Core work 2020Q1 → 2020Q2: Technical writing added

#12 Updated by sajolida 2020-01-05 16:27:01

  • blocked by deleted (Feature #16711: Core work 2019Q3 → 2019Q4: Technical writing)