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Re: OPTIONS

From: John Stracke <francis@ecal.com>
Date: Wed, 14 Feb 2001 11:00:25 -0500
Message-ID: <3A8AAB99.D245DFB7@ecal.com>
To: w3c-dist-auth@w3.org
Kevin Wiggen wrote:

> 1)  /foo is a directory with no contents.
>     OPTIONS to /foo returns a 200 with the appropriate headers
>     OPTIONS to /foo/bar returns??  200 or 404??
>     OPTIONS to /foo/bar/fee returns a 404

[...]

> Since OPTIONS
> in 2068

(Side note: you want 2616, which obsoletes 2068.)

> states "the OPTIONS request applies only to the options that are
> available when communicating with that resource."  Thus to get a 200
> response a resource must exist!!!

Well, let's see.  Consider PUT, for example; obviously, you can PUT to a
resource which does not exist (in the sense that GET would return 404).
Therefore, it is useful for OPTIONS to be able to tell you that PUT is allowed
on that resource.

<tries stuff>...OK, let's see.  Running against Apache, if I do OPTIONS against
a non-existent resource (in a non-existent directory), I get a 200, with the
expected data.  GET against the same resource returns 404; SMURF against that
resource returns 405.

To me, this seems reasonable.  I believe that *all* resources exist.  A
resource is an object whose methods are HTTP methods; you can issue an HTTP
method against any Request-URI in the server's namespace; the server will
respond.  By definition, the response is the result of that object's method.
Therefore, there is an object named by that Request-URI.  Note that 2616,
section 10.4.5, defines 404 as meaning, "The server has not found anything
matching the Request-URI".  This is *not* the same as saying that the specified
resource does not exist.

--
/==============================================================\
|John Stracke    | http://www.ecal.com |My opinions are my own.|
|Chief Scientist |=============================================|
|eCal Corp.      |"Call me a Nervous Nellie, but I am concerned|
|francis@ecal.com|about the sale of nuclear arms in my general |
|                |neighborhood." -- Dave Barry                 |
\==============================================================/
Received on Wednesday, 14 February 2001 10:55:05 GMT

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