Use TcpClient with SslStream to request an HTTPS URL (And add your own headers!)

Posted by Gal Ratner on 11/9/2021

You can use a Socket to request any http URL on the web just by sending your own HTTP formatted request, but what about https URLs?

To programmatically request a secure URL over SSL we will need to use an SslStream stream and negotiate the exchange od certificates.

First lets construct the request we will be sending to the remote server over port 443.

string host = "";
	string path = "/Psychic/lucinda";
	int port = 443;
	string request = "GET "+ path + " HTTP/1.1\r\nHost: " + host + "\r\n" +
	"Referer: Gal Ratner's Blog\r\n" +
	"User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; Win64; x64) AppleWebKit/537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/95.0.4638.69 Safari/537.36\r\n" +
	"Accept-Encoding: deflate\r\n" +
	"Connection: close\r\n\r\n";

The code to send the request and write back the response is:

public static void TcpClientSendReceive(String server, int port, String message)
	using (TcpClient client = new TcpClient(server, port))
		using (SslStream sslStream = new SslStream(client.GetStream(), false))
				Byte[] data = System.Text.Encoding.ASCII.GetBytes(message);
				sslStream.Write(data, 0, data.Length);

				Console.WriteLine("Sent: {0}", message);
				string responseData = String.Empty;
				using (StreamReader sr = new StreamReader(sslStream))
					responseData = sr.ReadToEnd();
				Console.WriteLine($"Received: {responseData}");
			catch (ArgumentNullException e)
				Console.WriteLine("ArgumentNullException: {0}", e);
			catch (SocketException e)
				Console.WriteLine("SocketException: {0}", e);
			catch (Exception e)
				Console.WriteLine("Exception: {0}", e);

Finally lets call our function:

Console.WriteLine($"Requesting URL {host}");
GetSocket.TcpClientSendReceive(host, port, request);

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1 Comments. Join The Conversation

Madison Jones, 11/15/2021

Thank you for the tutorial. Saved me hours of research!