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Re: [RFC2518 Issue] PROPFIND 'allprop' usage

From: Hartmut Warncke <hwarncke@Adobe.COM>
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 2000 17:58:26 +0100
Message-ID: <3A1BFB32.778D55BF@adobe.com>
To: "Hall, Shaun" <Shaun.Hall@gbr.xerox.com>, WebDAV WG <w3c-dist-auth@w3.org>

> The implications of PROPFIND with an infinite depth affect both the server
> and/or the client. Supposing you have a large WebDAV enabled repository. The
> PROPFIND request (a few hundred bytes) could potentially mean that (tens of)
> GBs of data is to be returned. Even if the server could generate such a
> large response (which is a feat in its own right), it will load the network,
> and what will happen when the client receives it? Pity the poor user sitting
> there for a long time (hours?), only to be told "timed out" or "out of
> memory" or something similar.

Yes, of course, I completely understand your point of view. But as a matter of
fact we like this "depth infinity" feature very much because we can use it in a
very efficient way in some situations and therefore we are struggleing so hard
for keeping that feature.

> Changing the specification could break existing products, which is a bad
> thing. Backwards compatibilty should be maintained.

Good to hear that. But I am not quite sure how you will do that because if a
server has the possibility to refuse a depth infinity request GoLive 5 will not
be able to handle that situation (synchronization of client and server content
will not work anymore).

> We think the way forward for the WebDAV specification is to allow servers
> the ability to refuse such requests and inform the client. A mechanism
> should be defined for the client to understand this. If the client received
> a response which basically stated that the server was refusing to service an
> infinite depth request, it could issue multiple requests with a Depth:1.

If you have to synchronize a very large site with thousands of files, replacing
depth infinity requests by depth 1 requests would be a huge performance disaster
for us.

Best, Hartmut
Received on Wednesday, 22 November 2000 12:13:17 UTC

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