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Microsoft, WebDAV, and XML namespaces, was: ISSUE-120 CP

From: Julian Reschke <julian.reschke@gmx.de>
Date: Fri, 21 Jan 2011 13:39:45 +0100
Message-ID: <4D397E91.9090506@gmx.de>
To: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
CC: public-html@w3.org
On 19.01.2011 22:06, Ian Hickson wrote:
>
> Here is a CP for ISSUE-120:
> http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-archive/2011Jan/att-0022/cp-120.html

Citing from there:

> WebDAV
>     The most widely-deployed WebDAV implementation has namespace-related bugs.

Yes, it does. The most-widely deployed HTML user-agent also has bugs, 
related to HTML, CSS, JS, whatnot.

So a statement like this really is misleading.

The bug Ian is referring to probably is 
<http://greenbytes.de/tech/webdav/webfolder-client-list.html#issue-namespace-handling>:

"DAV: namespaced elements in a PROPFIND responses can not use a default 
namespace; each element must be explicitly prefixed with a namespace 
prefix defined in itself or a parent. If a default namespace is used the 
client will give no errors, but will not display any resources."

(there's a similar bug in the newer WebDAV mini-redirector).

So what does this mean?

Servers can't use a default XML namespace for elements in the WebDAV 
namespace. Period.

On the other hand:

1) Servers do not need to use a specific prefix -- so the bug is not 
about expecting a specific prefix, but just assuming that a prefix is used.

2) Other uses of XML namespaces, such as for identifying WebDAV property 
names aren't affected at all.

So this is an annoying, but somewhat harmless bug; server implementers 
have learned that they can't use the default namespace, and use a prefix 
instead.

Lessons:

It's always bad when a big vendor starts with good support for a 
specific technology, but then essentially leaves the standards body, and 
moves their code into "maintenance". What happened here is not unlike 
what happened with HTML between IE6 and IE7.

Best regards, Julian
Received on Friday, 21 January 2011 12:40:38 UTC

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