CHAPTER 10

Other Applications of SSL

So far, this book has been almost myopically focused on the application of TLS to HTTP. Although HTTP was the primary motivation for the development of SSL in the first place, and continues to be the principal driver behind its evolution, HTTP is not the only protocol that relies on SSL/TLS to provide privacy and authentication extensions. This chapter examines a few of these other applications, and looks at some of the ways that the HTTP-focused design decisions in TLS complicate its adaptation to other protocols.

Adding the NTTPS Extension to the NTTP Algorithm

Network News Transfer Protocol (NNTP) is one of the oldest Internet protocols still in use. "In use" might be a charitable term — although the paramedics haven't pronounced NNTP dead, they've stopped resuscitating it and are just waiting for the heart monitor to stop beeping. I must admit I have a warm place in my heart for NNTP and the Usenet community that relied on it — before there was the National Center for Supercomputing Application's Mosaic or Mosaic's successor, Netscape Communicator, there was Usenet. I remember spending many hours in college, when I should have been working on programming assignments, in front of tin: the command-line, curses-based Unix Usenet reader. Although the newsgroups have since devolved into an unusable morass of spam, the early character-based Usenet is an example of what the Internet could be in its finest form. I blame high-speed connections and ...

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