For my web front end's I plan to put the two of them against a load balancer (netscaler) the admin i'm working with gave me the option to Offload SSL on the load balancer...in 2010 I would have said yes to this but i'm not sure how this would work in 2013. Should I allow the load balancer to handle the SSL work or push it through to my WFE's.

If i'm offloading SSL to the loadbalancer do I still need to have my web applications setup to use HTTPS? can't I just get away with using HTTP now? the confusing point I am trying to figure out is...I read a lot about how the communication interfarm should be https...is it automatically https and the web apps are handled by my configuration either HTTP or HTTPS?


Yes, you need to ensure your published URLS for your farm are setup to use HTTP as the traffic from your Netscaler to the farm will be in HTTP.

This only matters for the published URLS as these are the URLS the Netscaler will use. Don't worry about the traffic between various servers in your farm as it doesn't make a difference from a SSL offload perspective. The only thing that matters is the connection from the Netscaler to the web front ends.

Here is something that may be worth reading about what needs to be done in SPS.

The Netscaler will keep the traffic between the client browser and itself secure. The below traffic flow is what you'll end up with:

Client PC --[Secure HTTPS]--> Netscaler --[HTTP]--> Web Front End Server

Hope this helps!

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  • Awesome!...so I have one remaining question...if the traffic hitting the Netscaler is https and the Netscaler is pushing it on to my WFE's that are accepting HTTP...when the connection for the client is made are they still using HTTPS in the browser or does it switch them to HTTP? is the Netscaler able to keep the session secure? – Jacob A Aug 22 '13 at 21:23
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    See my updated answer. The Netscaler will keep the session secure. If its configured correctly of course. :) Have you set it up to only listen on HTTPS? – Chris.ZA Aug 23 '13 at 4:40
  • Very helpful, I can understand it a bit more now for sure and to answer your question, I have not gone through configuring the netscaler with my infrastructure admin yet...I have only had experience with HTTP balancing as well as he. So i wanted to be sure that i had a good understanding of the possibilities of leveraging SSL in 2013 and how it could be done. Is there something i should know about listening on only HTTPS? – Jacob A Aug 23 '13 at 13:44

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