SQL 2016 – It Just Runs Faster – AlwaysOn AES-NI Encryption

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The SQL Server 2016, AlwaysOn, log transport takes advantage of hardware based encryption to significantly improve scale and performance.


SQL Server 2016 development efforts continued focusing on the AlwaysOn log shipping transport.  Testing revealed that software based encryption, while fundamentally sound, could be improved using hardware based capabilities.


The exchange of information between AlwaysOn instances takes place over a message protocol.   When encryption is configured the messages are encrypted and decrypted at the designated endpoints.  Because the messages are delivered across a remote environment the overhead of encryption activities can increase the latency of the communications.