I've already read an excellent explanation of what is HTTPS and SOCKS proxy. What I understand, is that by HTTPS proxy people mean:

  1. Secure channel between proxy and target server
  2. Secure channel between client and proxy
  3. Both from above: secure channel between client-proxy and proxy-target_server. But that requires two SSL (one nested inside other). This is pretty complex.

In other hand, SOCKS protocol is more low level and it's easy to configure with SSH and forget about pain of configuring nested SSL:

An alternative is to use a SOCKS proxy. This is easy to setup with SSH. With a SSH-powered SOCKS proxy, all the communications emanating from your browser will go through a SSH tunnel between your client machine and the proxy server.

So why SOCKS proxies haven't forced HTTPS proxies out yet? When HTTP proxy is better?

1 Answer 1


So why SOCKS proxies haven't forced HTTPS proxies out yet? When HTTP proxy is better?

Convenience, HTTP proxies handle HTTPS connections transparently; by creating a tunnel and through the HTTP CONNECT method. For any non-TLS connections, it will forward HTTP requests just as well.

Since the majority of "legitimate" traffic is HTTP(s) anyway (i.e: a hotel / airport / ... is more likely to let you do http(s) traffic), it's more riskier for a company to allow sock proxies. This will allow people to use their connection to perform outbound connections (spam, bruteforce attacks, ...)

  • so SOCKS proxy is better if it's allowed, right? But usually SOCKS isn't allowed, so I have to stay with HTTP(s), right?
    – VB_
    Mar 14, 2017 at 23:46
  • I don't know if you can call something "better", when it's barely usable (again, thinking of public networks). They provide a similar tunneling experience; perhaps timeout and deep packet inspection differences.
    – ndrix
    Mar 14, 2017 at 23:52

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