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Android supports both Chromium-based and Firefox-based browsers since long now.

While those browsers have full support for HTTP/SOCKS proxies under all other OSes (Linux, OSX and even Windows), they are lacking it completely under Android. There's no setting at all to configure one.

I can easily configure a SOCKSv5 proxy on my Android device with, say, ssh -D to be used over whatever connections I have (wifi, ethernet, mobile data...), but I cannot use it with my browsers.

There's some system-wide support when you configure wifi, but that's not what I talk about. I mean the good ol' application-level proxy support. I don't want to send all traffic through a proxy, but just that for a specific browser on demand.

For the curious, I am asking this because I need and can compare results on my landline Internet link, but I cannot do the same on my mobile one.

Please, forget about VPNs which are also system-wide solutions like wifi proxies. I need to configure a proxy on a per-browser basis, just like I can do on a PC, and not a VPN.

So, why this lack?

  • Firefox has some proxy settings in about:config on Android, but they never worked properly for me. You can try them. – glebtv Sep 18 '18 at 7:22
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There's no apparent "technical" reason for that lack. I suspect it'd be something related to the "Android Program Policy" (or whatever else it's called). In my opinion it looks like an intentional choice as the system-level proxy you can normally configure could be leaking information for some reason or bug.

Anyway, we can configure the SOCKSv5 proxy for Firefox for Android, but there seems to be no way to do the same for Chrome/Chromium.

Provided that you already established such a proxy, for example with a suitable SSH client (-D option).

  1. In Firefox address bar type: about:config. A page full of settings will pop up.
  2. In the search box type network.proxy to reduce the settings to those we are interested in.
  3. For a SOCKv5 proxy you can set:

    • network.proxy.socks to the proxy IP address
    • network.proxy.socks_port to the proxy TCP port
    • network.proxy.type to 1 for manual proxy configuration
    • (optional) network.proxy.no_proxies_on to address that need not to be proxied (or clean it up to reach remote loopback addresses)
  4. For a "regular" HTTP proxy, any other proxy type or even any other setting that's not available in the setting menu, please refer to the above settings page and to the official online documentation.

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