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Re: I-D Action:draft-nottingham-http-portal-00.txt

From: Stefan Eissing <stefan.eissing@greenbytes.de>
Date: Thu, 5 Aug 2010 10:06:29 +0200
Message-Id: <7BC47D1E-07B6-455E-A65A-B7250C76832D@greenbytes.de>
To: HTTP Working Group <ietf-http-wg@w3.org>
Interesting. "Network Auth Required" makes a lot of sense. It might also make sense to define a code for "Network Access Denied", when a network provider does not allow traffic to certain subnets/hosts. This is common in enterprise access to the outside world and some countries are known to implement such measures as well. A 403 is not really the same.

I would not put this in the scope of the draft, but:

As for non-HTTP connections (POP/IMAP etc.): an alternative to hacking OS network stacks might be to define a fixed URL where network restrictions can be retrieved. For example:


which serves a document listing restrictions (preferably human and machine readable). Owners of captive portals could redirect such requests and provide their own answer, listing the restrictions currently in place. It is then trivial to develop applications that check that url when the OS connects to a network. (The question is who wants to operate the real server which gets bombarded with requests from unrestricted networks? Anyone from akamai raises a hand?)

Just a thought.

Cheers, Stefan

Am 05.08.2010 um 08:11 schrieb Mark Nottingham:

> [ reply-to http list ]
> FYI. There was an old discussion about this on the HTTP list, starting at <http://www.w3.org/mid/76F49FF4-54D7-4917-85A3-A0D648E57C7E@mnot.net>, and I think it's time to do something about it.
> Feedback appreciated. My intent is to engage with folks who are using captive portals (have already made some small headway there) and register a new status code if a) feedback here and there is good and b) they indicate willingness to implement.
> Cheers,
> Begin forwarded message:
>> From: Internet-Drafts@ietf.org
>> Date: 5 August 2010 4:00:02 PM AEST
>> To: i-d-announce@ietf.org
>> Subject: I-D Action:draft-nottingham-http-portal-00.txt 
>> Reply-To: internet-drafts@ietf.org
>> A New Internet-Draft is available from the on-line Internet-Drafts directories.
>> 	Title           : Considerations for Captive Portals in HTTP
>> 	Author(s)       : M. Nottingham
>> 	Filename        : draft-nottingham-http-portal-00.txt
>> 	Pages           : 6
>> 	Date            : 2010-08-04
>> "Captive portals" are a commonly-deployed means of obtaining access
>> credentials and/or payment for a network.  This memo discusses issues
>> of their use for HTTP applications, and proposes one possible
>> mitigation strategy.
>> This memo should be discussed on the ietf-http-wg@w3.org mailing
>> list, although it is not a work item of the HTTPbis WG.
>> A URL for this Internet-Draft is:
>> http://www.ietf.org/internet-drafts/draft-nottingham-http-portal-00.txt
>> Internet-Drafts are also available by anonymous FTP at:
>> ftp://ftp.ietf.org/internet-drafts/
>> Below is the data which will enable a MIME compliant mail reader
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>> Internet-Draft.
> <Mail Attachment>
>> _______________________________________________
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> --
> Mark Nottingham     http://www.mnot.net/

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Received on Thursday, 5 August 2010 08:07:00 UTC

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