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I want to measure the connection setup times between an SSH client and server, using different Key Exchange methods. I've got the client and server configured and working properly on the same machine, but cannot find any tool that will let me measure just the connection establishment time.

There is sshping, but it measures latency and bandwidth for a SSH session.

Is it even possible? Any pointers in the right direction will be appreciated!

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I don't know any proper benchmark approach (in terms of scientific approach), but if you'd like just to have an idea, you could try something like this as a starting point:

$ time ssh [other options] user@server.IP.address.here  "true"

This way it will show you the time needed to connect to the remote server and call the command "true". Please note, that to get better results you should loop this with a proper warm-up phase, be aware (and ideally get rid of) various influencing factors, like DNS resolution, concurrent connections, load on both machines (and routers between), etc. This will not test the encryption only but everything that happens in between.

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