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I'm on Ubuntu 12.04 and constantly experience trouble browsing, i.e. extremely slow-loading websites. I'm fairly confident it's not just a network problem.

Sometimes I find that when Chrome repeatedly times out, Firefox works better. However, googling anything from Firefox usually brings me to the Google error message: It appears your computer is sending automated requests, where I have to enter a captcha to continue. These error messages also indicate that my queries are coming from strange IPs from all over the world. The last one a few minutes ago was (supposedly in Florida, though I'm in Ontario).

Googling these IPs usually brings up some databases about spambots and some lists of Tor end nodes. I once had a Torbutton extension installed in Firefox but it was buggy so I removed it.

Could my surfing problems be the result of a remaining Tor configuration within Firefox and the result of something unrelated in Chrome? Is it likely that I have been made a spambot and need a clean install of the OS? How could I diagnose the Tor theory further?

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What's the result of sudo ps aux | grep tor? – m4573r Sep 11 '12 at 13:16
By Jupiter, there it is. I could swear I checked ps a thousand times before. Removed it, and now Firefox doesn't load any websites, though Chrome still does. Any ideas how to reconfigure Firefox to use my "normal" DNS settings? (Also, post your answer and I'll accept it.) – sebastian_k Sep 11 '12 at 13:29
@m4573r: Actually, found it. Please post your answer so I can accept it. Maybe the reason was that I always just checked ps aux and never thought of running sudo ps aux. – sebastian_k Sep 11 '12 at 13:32
Alright, glad I could help ;) – m4573r Sep 11 '12 at 13:52
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Try sudo ps aux | grep tor, you'll know if it's working ;)

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As someone who doesn't have tor and isn't running Ubuntu, I'm curious as to what it shows such that you know it's working. – ioSamurai Sep 11 '12 at 14:34
@libertas, m4573r had answered my questions in the comments above, that's what he means by "it's working". ps lists all running processes (similar to Windows' Task Manager), and tor showed up in that list on my computer, so I knew it was running in the background. – sebastian_k Sep 11 '12 at 14:43

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