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URI References in HTTP Headers

From: Justin Chapweske <justin@chapweske.com>
Date: Thu, 14 Apr 2005 22:53:14 -0500
To: www-talk@w3.org
Message-Id: <1113537195.6702.1341.camel@bog>

Hello all,

I'm going through and cleaning out the protocol attics for our software,
and wanted to get an opinion.

We have an external file format, called THEX, that defines message
digests for blocks of a file
(http://www.open-content.net/specs/draft-jchapweske-thex-02.html), and
we wish to have a reference to this THEX file within the HTTP headers
for a piece of content.

We currently have response headers that look something like this:

200 OK
Connection: close
Date: Fri, 15 Apr 2005 02:14:46 GMT
Accept-Ranges: bytes
Content-Length: 20971520
Content-MD5: AuGvn1vh5gS3q/1MpPj31Q==
Last-Modified: Thu, 24 Feb 2005 05:29:55 GMT
X-Content-URI: urn:tree:tiger:7BBTDYRU2GHAIRZGMB3P6I4ZQDBULTMWIKJT7YI
X-Thex-URI:
http://foo.com:8080/thex?uri=http://bar.com/baz.zip;7BBTDYRU2GHAIRZGMB3P6I4ZQDBULTMWIKJT7YI

I'm wondering if a more generic header, like "Link:" with a "thex"
relation would be more appropriate here rather than the special purpose
"X-Thex-URI" header.

I realize that Link: was never adopted in HTTP and it may be too
overloaded by now to be useful, but it seems to make more sense to have
a generic reference or link header than custom headers for each type of
link you might have.

I appreciate your feedback.

-Justin
Received on Friday, 15 April 2005 03:56:28 GMT

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