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SPEC Announces SPECweb99_SSL Benchmark for Measuring Secure Web Server Performance

New benchmark adds SSL support to industry-standard SPECweb99

WARRENTON, Va., April 2, 2002 -- The Standard Performance Evaluation Corp. (SPEC) has released SPECweb99_SSL, a new benchmark that adds Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) Protocol support to SPECweb99, the acknowledged worldwide standard for web server performance evaluation.

"SPECweb99_SSL adds a reliable way to measure secure web server performance to the widely endorsed methodology used in SPECweb99," says Kaivalya M. Dixit, SPEC president. "It continues the SPEC tradition of providing the most objective and representative benchmarks for measuring web server performance."

SPECweb99_SSL is built on the same test harness and uses the same workload and filesets as SPECweb99. It tests secure web server performance using HTTP 1.0/1.1 over the SSL Protocol. It is an extension of, rather than a replacement for, SPECweb99.

Prevalence of SSL use on the Internet
The benchmark answers the need for a meaningful measure of the web server load generated by servicing encrypted requests, which have become more prevalent on the web over the last few years. SPECweb99_SSL adopts an industry-accepted workload to measure the performance capabilities of a web server with added SSL encryption/decryption.

The benchmark's metric is SPECweb99_SSL. It represents the number of simultaneous connections that a secure web server can support while meeting specific throughput and error-rate requirements. SPECweb99_SSL emulates clients sending the HTTPS requests in the workload over slow Internet connections to the web server.

Available Now
SPECweb99_SSL is available immediately on CD-ROM for $800. A discount is available for universities and other non-profits as well as for SPECweb99 licensees. SPECweb99 is still available for measuring the performance of HTTP web servers that do not use SSL.

Initial SPECweb99_SSL performance results are available on SPEC's web site ( Subsequent results will be posted on an ongoing basis following SPEC's review cycle. Because SPECweb99_SSL adds SSL operations and encryption to the workload, its results cannot be compared to those for SPECweb99.

SPECweb99_SSL was developed by SPEC's Open Systems Group (OSG). SPEC is a non-profit corporation formed to establish, maintain and endorse a standardized set of relevant benchmarks that can be applied to the newest generation of high-performance computers. In addition to OSG, SPEC member groups include the High-Performance Group (HPG) and the Graphics Performance Characterization (GPC) Group. SPEC membership consists of leading computer hardware and software vendors, universities and research facilities.

For more information, contact Dianne Rice, SPEC, 6585 Merchant Place, Ste. 100, Warrenton, VA 20187; telephone: 540-349-7878; fax: 540-349-5992; e-mail: or visit

Additional information, including answers to frequently asked questions about SPECweb99_SSL and the latest benchmark results, is available at:

Press contacts:
Bob Cramblitt, Erin Hatfield
Cramblitt & Company