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RFC 2616 Errata: 14.11 Content Encoding

From: Travis Snoozy (Volt) <a-travis@microsoft.com>
Date: Thu, 14 Dec 2006 11:09:11 -0800
To: "ietf-http-wg@w3.org" <ietf-http-wg@w3.org>
Message-ID: <86EDC3963F04D546BED8996F77D290F602F0119C58@NA-EXMSG-C138.redmond.corp.microsoft.com>

The third paragraph of section 14.11 (page 118) reads as follows:


If the content-coding of an entity is not "identity", then the response MUST include a Content-Encoding entity-header (section 14.11) that lists the non-identity content-coding(s) used.


Aside from being self-referential, the phrasing can be interpreted in at least two ways, neither of which is probably the *intended* meaning:

* If the content-coding of an entity [in the request] is not "identity", then the response MUST include a Content-Encoding entity header [...].

* If the content-coding of an entity [at the URI requested by the client] is not "identity", then the response MUST include a Content-Encoding entity header [...].

Because the requirement specifically applies to "the response", both of these interpretations place a burden only on the server. The client is not required to declare any Content-Encoding values on its request message. However, the paragraph afterward (as well as the BNF for Request; Section 5, P35) implies that clients are allowed to send content-encoded messages to the server (because the server SHOULD respond with a 415 status). Thus, unless it is truly the case that clients are NOT required to explicitly identify content-encodings, I would suggest the following modification:


If the content-encoding of an entity is not "identity", then the <del>response</del><ins>HTTP-message containing the entity</ins> MUST include a Content-Encoding entity-header <del>(section 14.11)</del> that lists the non-identity content-coding(s) used.


-- Travis
Received on Thursday, 14 December 2006 19:09:24 GMT

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