Re: Semantics of multiple 103s in Early Hints

> Am 08.08.2017 um 10:55 schrieb Kazuho Oku <>:
> 2017-08-08 17:16 GMT+09:00 Stefan Eissing <>:
>> Ok, time to clarify the semantics, then words will come more easily.
> Yeah I agree with the approach.
>> In my mind, any header that comes with a 103 is not a header of the
>> resource that is requested. Same as with 100 and 101.
>> For a client/cache/intermediate any 1xx header is neutral to the
>> set of resource headers in the final response.
> I agree to the above.
>> RFC 7231 says (ch. 6.2) "If the request did not contain an Expect
>> header field containing the 100-continue expectation, the client
>> can simply discard this interim response."
>> And "101 Switching Protocols" is obviously hop-by-hop anyway, so
>> it may never reach the consumer of the real response.
>> For 103, this is also true. Any HTTP/2 intermediate should discard
>> unknown 1xx responses, so the server can also not assume that its
>> headers reach all recipients.
> I do not agree. RFC 7231 section 6.2 states:
>   A proxy MUST forward 1xx responses unless the proxy itself requested
>   the generation of the 1xx response.
> So it would be natural to assume that proxies that do not understand
> 103 will forward the hints to the client.

You are right. A proxy MUST forward it. I have no idea if this works
in reality, though.


>> That also relieves intermediates from any obligation of "folding"
>> 103s into the final response (in case they do not want or can not
>> send on the 103s).
>> Which also requires any origin that *wants* these headers in the
>> final response that is about the resource , to duplicate them in
>> its response.
>> Personally, I think of 1xx as a signalling channel from server
>> to client that can be used before the response is sent.
>> For 100 and 101, this is pretty clear. For 103 there is some
>> temptation to see Link: headers as part of the final response,
>> but they really are not.
>> My interpretation.
>> -Stefan
>>> Am 08.08.2017 um 09:38 schrieb Willy Tarreau <>:
>>> On Tue, Aug 08, 2017 at 03:57:16PM +0900, Kazuho Oku wrote:
>>>> 2017-08-08 14:29 GMT+09:00 Willy Tarreau <>:
>>>>> What about something like this instead :
>>>>> A client must be prepared to receive multiple 103 (Early Hints) responses
>>>>> in any order coming from multiple intermediaries as well as the origin
>>>>> server along the path between the client and the server. Given that such
>>>>> agents will often rely on different but overlapping policies to emit these
>>>>> responses, it is likely that some header fields may be repeated. The client
>>>>> is expected to simply consider the union of all these header fields as if
>>>>> they were received in a single response.
>>>> Thank you for your comments and the suggestion.
>>>> I am worried of adding statements on how an intermediary could
>>>> generate 103 responses and using that as the reasoning for why the
>>>> client should consider the union of the header fields as the
>>>> server-provided expectation.
>>> But isn't it expected to be the reality ? In the other example I gave
>>> it makes a lot of sense and it becomes obvious :
>>> - for clients that any such response may be partial ;
>>> - for clients that any such response may overlap with others ;
>>> - for clients that even the union of these responses do not provide an
>>>   exhaustive list
>>> - for clients that the final response will probably not contain the
>>>   whole list of links given that some might have speculatively been
>>>   added in anticipation
>>> - for servers that they don't know if upfront intermediaries have
>>>   already sent equivalent links
>>> - for servers that based on the incertainty of what is done upfront,
>>>   they need have to provide the final list with the final response
>>>> This is because it is technically
>>>> possible to to require each intermediary to build (i.e. calculate the
>>>> union) and emit a complete set of header fields for every 103 response
>>>> that it sends.
>>> In fact not exactly. Most of these will be built while processing the
>>> request, long before the response arrives. When the response arrives,
>>> conditions may have changed. For example in haproxy when processing
>>> the response we don't have access to the request elements anymore. A
>>> rule based on the Host field or on the URI prefix would be matched
>>> only during the request and not during the response (we have the
>>> ability to artificially copy them into variables for such explicit
>>> processing but it's not natural). I tend to think that we should keep
>>> in mind that what intermediaries add there is approximative but helps
>>> fill dead time speculatively preloading contents that will be likely
>>> needed, and that the final word is to the server's final response. We
>>> could possibly even suggest that elements that were learned from 103
>>> and not yet prefeteched could be aborted if they don't appear in the
>>> final response.
>>>> Therefore, my preference goes to either (re)stating the general rule
>>>> (i.e. nonexistence in 103 is not an indication of absence in the final
>>>> response), or to state the expected behavior of the endpoints without
>>>> any reasoning. I also think that we should keep the "a server can
>>>> omit" statement, since it would be a direct answer for people
>>>> wondering how a server should adjust the expectation that it has
>>>> already sent.
>>> I see your point but I tend to think that explaining the workflow like
>>> above makes all these responses much more obvious in fact. If you're
>>> willing to go down that route, I can try to help provide a paragraph
>>> to (try to) make this more natural.
>>>> Considering the points, how using something like below for the last paragraph:
>>>>  While emitting a series of 103 (Early Hints) responses, a server can
>>>>  omit a header field that was included in one response in the
>>>>  following responses, even when it is anticipated that the header
>>>>  field will be part of the final response.
>>> To be honnest I'm having difficulties parsing it, which is not a good
>>> sign for a standard ;-)
>>> It would be nice if some native english speakers could bring some help
>>> here, some of our sentences are not always the most natural we can think
>>> of.
>>> Cheers,
>>> Willy
> -- 
> Kazuho Oku

Received on Tuesday, 8 August 2017 09:06:39 UTC