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WebDAV Browsers

From: Judith Slein <slein@wrc.xerox.com>
Date: Thu, 13 Nov 1997 14:52:37 PST
Message-Id: <>
To: w3c-dist-auth@w3.org
Here's something that I've been wondering about lately.  Do we expect that
there will come to be standard WebDAV browsers, just as there are standard
HTTP browsers today?  Or do we think that the main use of WebDAV will be by
specialized client-side applications?

If there were standard WebDAV browsers, we might like them to be able to
handle a simple scenario like this:

1. GET MyHomePage HTTP/1.1
2. (response has an HTML page with links and / or controls, some of which
do HTTP GETs and some of which cause WebDAV requests to be sent.  Maybe one
of them causes an INDEX of my collection to be requested.)
3. User clicks on the control that causes INDEX to be requested
4. INDEX MyHomePage WebDAV/1.0
5. (response is a list of the resources in my collection, but I really 
want it to be presented with links or controls that allow the user to
choose, for any resource on the list, to GET the resource or alternatively
to PROPFIND to see all its properties)
6. User asks to see the properties for a resource
7. PROPFIND MyHomePage/doc1.html WebDAV/1.0
8. (response lists all properties and their values)
9. User goes BACK to the index listing
10. User asks to retrieve the resource itself
11. GET MyHomePage/doc1.html HTTP/1.1
12. (response is the resource's content)

This scenario raises several questions for me.

First, how would a WebDAV browser know to send a WebDAV request rather than
an HTTP GET or POST?  Do we need to standardize something in the HTML or
XML realm here?  (I've had a couple of suggestions from colleagues at Xerox
-- Larry Masinter suggests defining a DAV: URL scheme as a simple solution.)

Second, how could we get the flexibility step 5 would require, to present
the results of INDEX (or any other WebDAV method) in a particular way?

Received on Thursday, 13 November 1997 17:48:02 UTC

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