Any opinions expressed here are my own and not necessarily those of my employer (I'm self-employed).

Sep 5, 2010

Windows server 2003 vs 2008, SSL/TLS comparison

There are many differences between the Windows server 2003 and the 2008 version. We'll focus on the SSL/TLS support in 2003 vs 2008, there are important differences in both default configuration and cryptographic support.

The SSL (Secure Sockets Layer), and (its successor) TLS (Transport Layer Security) security protocols  can be used to secure many types of Internet services, such as web, FTP,  and e-mail communication. SSL/TLS handles negotiaton of cryptographic keys and cryptographic algorithms (ciphers), but the security of the TLS connection is both ensured and bound by the ciphers available for negotiation. To ensure security, weak encryption must be disabled and strong ciphers must be available and configured.  

The 2003 server supports weak SSL/TLS ciphers in its default configuration. This is not an issue in the 2008 server. On the contrary, the 2008 server offers new and more secure setups for SSL/TLS.

The 2008 server 
Windows Server 2008 was first available in February 2008, and later in R2 in July 2009. It introduces exciting new technologies such as AppFabric (high performance cache), and significant updates in the IIS 7.5. In addition, the 2008 server can be installed with a server core setup where the attack surface of the server has been reduced significantly, essentially offering only a console on the server. For those who work in a pure Microsoft environment, but occasionally miss Linux og *BSD servers (like myself), the server core installation might be the answer.

2008 Server includes Microsoft's new cryptographic framework, code named Cryptography Next Generation (CNG). CNG was developed to meet updated requirements from NSA for cryptographic software used by the U.S. government and constitutes a major update to the cryptographic support offered by the Windows Server product line.

SSL/TLS, 2003 vs 2008
The 2008 server offers up to date cryptographic capabilites, as shown by the following table (green cells indicate support):

Server 2003Server 2008Cipher suiteCipherKey length
* AES support provided by a hotfix to the 2003 server

The list includes ciphers that can be safely enabled in the SSL/TLS configuration, weak ciphers have been left out. Note that AES is the industry standard for the future, and is supported by the 2008 server, but not by the 2003 unless installed as a hotfix. The table shows that the 2008 server offer many more cipher suites. It is reasonable to assume that the 2003 server will never support all these algorithms, especially in light of their AES-hotfix which only adds two of these.

When comparing support for SSL/TLS protocol versions, the 2008 server comes out on top, with its support for SSL 3.0, and TLS versions up to 1.2. The 2003 server supports SSL 3.0 and TLS 1.0.

So, the lesson learned her is: If you want state-of-the-art cryptographic support, upgrade your 2003 servers to 2008!


  1. Commonly we attain confused when we finally hear the exact terms website development service in addition to internet developer getting used interchangeably. But thoughts is broken done looking over this, all your individual confusions may perhaps disappear. Poof!
    shell shockers

  2. One of the strategies the company has adopted in becoming the best Legitimate Essay Writing Service providing company in the industry is the focus on delivering Top Paper Writing Services that are 100% unique.

  3. Thanks for this valuable information sharing, and i learned a lot and cleared my all doubts in this.. keep posting like this useful information.
    post free classified ads in india

  4. Thanks for this valuable information sharing, and i learned a lot and cleared my all doubts in this.. keep posting like this useful information.
    Scaffolding Dealers in Chennai
    Aluminium Scaffolding Dealers in Chennai

  5. Thanks for sharing this wonderful information. I hope you will share more helpful information regarding the content.
    web portal development company in chennai

  6. Thanks for sharing this wonderful information. I hope you will share more helpful information regarding the content.
    scaffolding dealers in chennai
    aluminium scaffolding dealers in chennai

  7. I am glad that I saw this post. It is informative blog for us and we need this type of blog thanks for share this blog, Keep posting such instructional blogs and I am looking forward for your future posts.
    Cyber Security Projects for Final Year

    JavaScript Training in Chennai

    Project Centers in Chennai

    JavaScript Training in Chennai

  8. Very detailed comparison, please keep writing.

  9. Nice blog. If you need any quickbooks related support contact quickbooks support number. Read More: quickbooks customer care number

  10. Its really amazing blog.Thanks for the blog. If you need any assistance regarding quickbooks contact us. Read more: quickbooks support number

  11. (Michael Kors Outlet Online) thoughts (Jordan Shoes For Sale Online) at scientific tests and as a consequence creativity, Plasma tv created treatment options trade watch.

    Gains all the perks(Glass pitcher) (Cheap Jordan Shoes Websites) 4. Strikeouts(Glass pitcher) 5. Staff members is (New Yeezys 2020) victorious 6. Walking on in drenched feet isn your ultimate prospect of (Ray Ban Outlet Store) leisure, Regardless of what journey on the other (Coach Outlet Store Online) hand physical available one's own shoes shoes or boots (Michael Kors Outlet) are possibly. Which is which they can use some advanced suggestions about what to refill your cupboard while having. We refined much of the (New Jordan Releases 2020) stylish and a lot helpful sandals, In each sort this kind of, Intended keep feet dried out in the event going out.

  12. A Chatbot Development is a product program for reproducing wise discussions with human utilizing rules or man-made brainpower. Clients connect with the Chatbot development service by means of conversational interface through composed or spoken content. Chatbots can live in informing stages like Slack, Facebook Messenger bot developer and Telegram and fill some needs – requesting items, thinking about climate and dealing with your fund in addition to other things. As a Chatbot development company advancement organization our competency let you find happiness in the hereafter by taking care of clients all the more intelligently to accomplish wanted outcome. As a Chatbot companies we can streamline a large portion of your dreary undertakings, for example, voice bot advancement and client service, online business advices and so on.

  13. Those guidelines additionally worked to become a good way to recognize that other people online have the identical fervor like mine to grasp great deal more around this condition.
    CRM with Invoicing

  14. Windows server is very important for online businessmen, and they can improve their business in short time. They should manage their server carefully and enjoy earning money. Masters dissertation writing service.

  15. I would like to say that this blog really convinced me to do it! Thanks, very good post.Check out the way to fix Aol Error Code 475. Lean how you can fix it at your own or feel free to call our experts on our toll-free numbers or visit our website to know more!

  16. This comment has been removed by the author.

  17. Order fresh flowers Online from best online florist in bangalore. Send unique design flowers to bangalore for all special occasions to your loved ones

    send flowers to bangalore

  18. Sending gifts is easier now with GINBOX, no recipient address required, greater discount and faster checkout. Grab your globally unique & favourite GINBOX number and share it with friends and start receiving gifts.

    Send Gift Using Ginbox


Copyright notice

© André N. Klingsheim and www.dotnetnoob.com, 2009-2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to André N. Klingsheim and www.dotnetnoob.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Read other popular posts