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Re: Byte ranges -- formal spec proposal

From: Jim Seidman <jim@spyglass.com>
Date: Thu, 18 May 95 15:12:19 -0500
Message-Id: <9505182012.AA24764@hook.spyglass.com>
To: Brian Behlendorf <brian@organic.com>
Cc: http-wg%cuckoo.hpl.hp.com@hplb.hpl.hp.com
Brian Behlendorf writes:
>Now we get into some other subtleties - can we really reconstruct a 
>document from its fragments?

If we defined the standard in such a way that a byte range could never
be mistaken semantically for something else (like CGI script input),
then it seems like the easier thing for a proxy server to do would
be to request (and cache) the entire document, but only pass on the
requested range.  While this provides some performance degradation
to the first client if it requests a range well into the document,
it strikes me as much more reliable than trying to reconstruct a
document from fragments.

I agree that expecting a proxy server to correctly handle other units
(words, paragraphs, etc) might be a stretch.  Obviously there could be
cases where the proxy wouldn't understand the file format.  (Imagine
trying to have a proxy intelligently cache a page range off a postscript
file!)  This is part of the reason why trying to standardize ranges other
than bytes strikes me as somewhat pointless.

--
Jim Seidman, Senior Software Engineer
Spyglass Inc., 1230 E. Diehl Road, Naperville IL 60563
Received on Thursday, 18 May 1995 13:12:57 EDT

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