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Re: HTTP Extension Framwork in SOAP 1.2

From: Mark Nottingham <mnot@mnot.net>
Date: Tue, 17 Jul 2001 17:06:36 -0700
To: xmlp-comments@w3.org
Cc: XML Distributed Applications List <xml-dist-app@w3.org>
Message-ID: <20010717170632.A18358@mnot.net>

I would prefer option i (removal) or, failing that,  option iii

Currently, the only way that SOAP uses the framework is through the
addition of the SOAPAction header; recent discussions indicate that
it may be removed. Even if it were not, we believe the preferable
mechanism for adding an HTTP header is publication of an RFC-track
document, as the P3P WG has chosen to do.

In the case that SOAPAction is not removed, use of the Framework
incurs a higher cost for HTTP implementations to discover the
'intent' of the message (because the 'Opt' header must be parsed for
the appropriate namespace, a new header name constructed, and that
header parsed, for every message), negating some of its value.

As such, the framework provides no value to SOAP applications.
Additionally, there is little evidence of use of the framework, and
few HTTP implementations which enable it.

On Tue, Jul 17, 2001 at 04:00:13PM -0700, David Fallside wrote:
> An issue[1] has been raised against the recently published SOAP 1.2
> specification[2] regarding the reference to a normative binding to the HTTP
> Extension Framework[3].
> The issue relates to the fact that the HTTP Extension Framework
> specification has no standing within the IETF but as an Experimental RFC.
> This "experimental RFC" status has specific meaning[4] within the IETF.
> >From RFC2026 section 4.2.3:
>    If (a) the IESG recommends that the document be brought within the
>    IETF and progressed within the IETF context, but the author declines
>    to do so, or (b) the IESG considers that the document proposes
>    something that conflicts with, or is actually inimical to, an
>    established IETF effort, the document may still be published as an
>    Experimental or Informational RFC.  In these cases, however, the IESG
>    may insert appropriate "disclaimer" text into the RFC either in or
>    immediately following the "Status of this Memo" section in order to
>    make the circumstances of its publication clear to readers.
> and indeed the IESG did insert such a disclaimer in [3]:
>    IESG Note
>    This document was originally requested for Proposed Standard status.
>    However, due to mixed reviews during Last Call and within the HTTP
>    working group, it is being published as an Experimental document.
>    This is not necessarily an indication of technical flaws in the
>    document; rather, there is a more general concern about whether this
>    document actually represents community consensus regarding the
>    evolution of HTTP.  Additional study and discussion are needed before
>    this can be determined.
>    Note also that when HTTP is used as a substrate for other protocols,
>    it may be necessary or appropriate to use other extension mechanisms
>    in addition to, or instead of, those defined here.  This document
>    should therefore not be taken as a blueprint for adding extensions to
>    HTTP, but it defines mechanisms that might be useful in such
>    circumstances.
> Having this "normative" binding within the SOAP 1.2 specification may be
> interpreted by some as W3C endorsement of this experimental RFC,
> encouraging its use.
> We would like to have your feedback/input as to whether the XMLP Working
> Group should preserve or remove the reference to the normative HTTP
> Extension Framework binding in the SOAP 1.2 specification.
> The XMLP WG is considering several options:
> (i) removal of all references to HTTP Extension Framework binding
> (ii) preservation of status quo
> (iii) relocate the references to the HTTP Extension Framework binding to a
> non-normative appendix or a separately published document
> Send formal comments to xmlp-comments@w3.org (archive available at [5]).
> [1] http://www.w3.org/2000/xp/Group/xmlp-issues.html#x109
> [2] http://www.w3.org/TR/2001/WD-soap12-20010709
> [3] http://ietf.org/rfc/rfc2774.txt
> [4] http://ietf.org/rfc/rfc2026.txt
> [5] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/xmlp-comments/
> ............................................
> David C. Fallside, IBM
> Chair, XML Protocol Working Group
> Ph: 530.477.7169
> fallside@us.ibm.com

Mark Nottingham
Received on Tuesday, 17 July 2001 20:06:39 UTC

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