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Proposal: 205 Bodies [#88]

From: Mark Nottingham <mnot@mnot.net>
Date: Mon, 8 Jun 2009 20:16:14 +1000
Message-Id: <DF32202B-E65B-4631-B158-5E4A89BD897C@mnot.net>
To: HTTP Working Group <ietf-http-wg@w3.org>
> RFC2616 Section 4.3 "Message Body" enumerates those messages that  
> don't include a message-body;
> All 1xx (informational), 204 (no content), and 304 (not modified)  
> responses MUST NOT include a message-body. All other responses do  
> include a message-body, although it MAY be of zero length.
> However, it does not list 205 (section 10.2.6).
> Also if you look at the texts for 204, 304 and 205 responses, you  
> see that 204 and 304 say "MUST NOT include a message-body", whereas  
> 205 says "MUST NOT include an entity". 204 and 304 go on to say that  
> the message is terminated at the first empty line, but 205 does not  
> say that.


  - Add 205 to p1 sections 4.3 and 4.4 (which is where 2616's 4.3  
ended up), and
  - Revise the language in p2 8.2.6 (the definition of 205 Reset  
Content) to use the "MUST NOT include a message-body".

The only argument I can see against this is that someone might include  
entity headers in a 205 response, in the belief that that response  
updates a cache. This could be fixed by adding the phrase "or entity  
headers" to the MUST NOT requirement above. However, I would note that  
204 doesn't have any such language, and this confusion hasn't come up  
before, so I don't think it's really necessary.

I think this is *almost* editorial -- any objection?

Mark Nottingham     http://www.mnot.net/
Received on Monday, 8 June 2009 10:16:52 UTC

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