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RE: Proposal: WebDAV and transactions

From: Dennis E. Hamilton <dennis.hamilton@acm.org>
Date: Mon, 9 Sep 2002 09:53:23 -0700
To: <w3c-dist-auth@w3.org>
Cc: "Pill, Juergen" <Juergen.Pill@softwareag.com>, "Julian Reschke" <julian.reschke@gmx.de>
Message-ID: <NDBBKEGCNONMNKGDINPFOEDKGPAA.dennis.hamilton@acm.org>

I second that.  Also, there is more concern and interest about transactioning (and related topics) in specialized communities that are looking at how to adopt WebDAV in their niche.

The next point-counterpoint that Bernard Chester and I are working on for the electronic edition of AIIM eDocs magazine is going to be about the lack of transactioning support.  I was in Japan in April and this came up as a key issue for people operating with enterprise document-management systems there.  It also comes up in enterprise application integration, where federated transaction management is important.  That's looking pretty far down the road, but transactioning is a clear scalability issue unless one takes the position that WebDAV is simply not going to handle this, and people will need to use different views/islands for enterprise repositories if WebDAV is to be part of the story.

For a little background, here are the articles so far:

"WebDAV Arrives" (May/June 2002 Print issue)

"WebDAV Universal Clients" (September 4, 2002, on-line edition)

You will notice is that my perspective is toward being able to scale from a commodity protocol, so long as there is sufficient space within the specification to allow for that.  I say that WebDAV provides the necessary headroom, since metadata discovery and model discovery can all be done by supplemental and even parochial agreements within the existing framework.  Transactioning is not in that category and it will be a great challenge.

I notice that, on STEPwiki, the question about transactioning has not gone very far.  I don't know if Fielding's thesis addresses it or not.  I think Julian has a point in associating transactions with an object (resource) may be the avenue.  It is not obvious how to keep that within STEP and within HTTP without being just-another-tunneling. I think more discussion and attention are required.  

-- Dennis
Dennis E. Hamilton
AIIM DMware Technical Coordinator
http://DMware.info/ Development Site
  ODMA Support: http://ODMA.info/

-----Original Message-----
From: w3c-dist-auth-request@w3.org
[mailto:w3c-dist-auth-request@w3.org]On Behalf Of Julian Reschke
Sent: Monday, 09 September 2002 08:05
To: Pill, Juergen; 'Julian Reschke'; w3c-dist-auth@w3.org
Subject: RE: Proposal: WebDAV and transactions


I think one should try to achieve the same goal while staying inside the
boundaries of HTTP.

For instance, one could define a specific "transaction resource", and use
POST to append specific method invocations to it. You might also want to
present your use case on the REST-discuss mailing list...


<green/>bytes GmbH -- http://www.greenbytes.de -- tel:+492512807760

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Received on Monday, 9 September 2002 12:56:26 UTC

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