rend_consider_services_upload waits up to 4 hours to publish the first HS descriptor by default
From the documentation comment on
rend_consider_services_upload (in src/or/rendservice.c):
* For the first upload, pick a random time between now and two periods * from now, and pick it independently for each service.
“first upload” means the first HS descriptor upload after the service is configured in the Tor instance (i.e. when Tor is started); the ‘period’ referred to there is that specified in the
RendPostPeriod configuration option (default 2 hours).
Users have complained that HSes don't work for a while after they are set up. Now we know why they don't work for a while.
Should this be changed? I assume this huge delay was intended to (a) conceal associations between different hidden services run on the same Tor client, and (b) try a little bit to conceal associations between hidden services run on a relay and the relay's uptime. Do users really gain any privacy/security/whatever from this delay? If so, how much?
If this shouldn't be changed, we need an FAQ entry about this somewhere.