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Article: Fat protocols slow Web services

From: Roger L. Costello <costello@mitre.org>
Date: Tue, 08 Jan 2002 15:34:18 -0500
Message-ID: <3C3B57CA.19A1CF4E@mitre.org>
To: xml-dist-app@w3.org
CC: costello@mitre.org
Any comment on this article?


Some snippets:

"there's an evil little secret about Web services that most vendors
don't talk about. Web services' protocols are very fat, and that means
that Web services interactions over the network will be slow and eat up
a large chunk of bandwidth"

"it's a pain for network administrators, because they end up with more
network traffic to deal with. How much more? At this point, it's hard to
say, since Web services are still in their infancy. But Microsoft XML
Web services project manager Philips DesAutels admits that "there's a
cost to everything," and I believe the cost is performance with
SOAP-based Web services."

"Add to this that Web services have no built-in security. Because SOAP
sends everything in cleartext ASCII, that's a true security headache.
Your choices are:

- Insist on server- and client-side encryption, which will eat up time
on both ends of the Web services transaction

- Use Security Socket Layer (SSL), which, as DesAutels says, can also be
network and server/client side time-intensive, since for each
transaction "you're taking SSL up and down" 

- Use a virtual private network (VPN), as DesAutels suggests.

I like the VPN option myself, because it's the least costly in overall
performance, but VPNs aren't security solutions in and of themselves. Of
course, the common factor in each of these is that they all slow down
the network."
Received on Tuesday, 8 January 2002 15:34:58 UTC

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