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Re: HTTP/1.2 stuff: try it out!

From: Jeffrey Mogul <mogul@pa.dec.com>
Date: Wed, 23 Aug 95 14:12:39 MDT
Message-Id: <9508232112.AA27927@acetes.pa.dec.com>
To: Dave Kristol <dmk@allegra.att.com>
Cc: http-wg%cuckoo.hpl.hp.com@hplb.hpl.hp.com
       If the connection is left open, then the client may send more
       requests along the same connection.  Any time the Connection:
       Keep-Alive header is sent and received back, then the connection
       should stay open.

    Okay.  But there's a potential problem here.  If the server sends the
    response header, then encounters some kind of problem, it may be forced
    to close the connection, thus "lying".

The basic rule for a persistent-connection HTTP has to be that either
client or server (or proxy, for that matter) is allowed to close any
connection at any time.  This isn't "lying", this is life.

The word "should" (as in "should stay open") in IETF-speak usually
has the meaning "do this unless you cannot".  I think we need to
word the spec using "may"; neither side can compel the other to
keep a connection open.

-Jeff
Received on Wednesday, 23 August 1995 14:22:30 EDT

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