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Re: 4xx responses for bad query strings?

From: Dominique HazaŽl-Massieux <dom@w3.org>
Date: Tue, 03 Aug 2004 12:10:38 +0200
To: NESTING@w3.org, "DAVID M (SBCSI)" <dn3723@sbc.com>
Cc: www-talk@w3.org
Message-Id: <1091527838.1416.136.camel@stratustier>
> I'm trying to determine a proper way to indicate a requested piece of
> information was not found, where the information is keyed not just on the URI
> components identifying the HTTP resource, but upon the query string as well.

> If I have a content display resource at, say, http://example.com/path/display, and that resource generates a
> different page depending upon query string*, I might have URLs like:

> http://example.com/path/display?page1
> http://example.com/path/display?page2

As you mention in your email, I think the preferred solution would be to
translate the URIs in URIs without query strings - one of the reasons
being for instance caching information, that HTTP clients are allowed to
ignore in case the URI has a query part.

Lacking this, I think it's perfectly OK to send a 404 in these cases,
since the resource is identified by the whole URI, including the query
part; that is, replying 404 on http://example.com/display?pageFoo
doesn't imply that http://example.com/display doesn't exist.

Hope this helps,

Dominique HazaŽl-Massieux - http://www.w3.org/People/Dom/

Received on Tuesday, 3 August 2004 06:11:10 UTC

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