Performance Analysis of TLS Web Servers

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Executive Summary

TLS is the protocol of choice for securing today's ecommerce and online transactions, but adding TLS to a web server imposes a significant overhead relative to an insecure web server on the same platform. Authors perform a comprehensive study of the performance costs of TLS. The methodology is to profile TLS web servers with tracedriven workloads, replacing individual components inside TLS with no-ops, and measuring the observed increase in server throughput. Authors estimate the relative costs of each component within TLS, predicting the areas for which future optimizations would be worthwhile. The results they show that RSA accelerators are effective for e-commerce site workloads, because they experience low TLS session reuse.

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