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RE: Interop issue: Proposal for fixing lock token provision

From: Seth Osher <seth@ipicorp.com>
Date: Tue, 8 Oct 2002 23:53:42 -0400
To: "Webdav WG" <w3c-dist-auth@w3c.org>
RE: Interop issue: Proposal for fixing lock token provisionFor example a
long running folder copy, move or delete.

If the operation takes long enough that locks might expire
during the operation, then the semantic might not even be
really enforceable. Particularly, it servers is incapable of checking the
locks in advance, or to do so might be expensive from a time
perspective (say an operation on a optical-archive, where the full set
of resources is only known on the media).

In these cases you want the copy or move to perform "as much work
as possible" so you just want to provide a list of all your current tokens.

A second example is where a server provides multiple views of the same
data.  A client may not know for certain what resources it has locked
and are going to participate in a copy, move or delete operation.
Rather than fully enumerating the set of resources to be operated on,
presenting "all-my-tokens" would be useful, if not critical.

A third case is where a user wants the operation to succeed, even
if etags for the locked resources have changed (perhaps a shared-write
has updated the resource, changing its etag).  In this case, we want to
present the lock, and don't want to worry about the etag.  It might even
have be deleted by the shared-write lock so the token is no longer valid.

Perhaps it is possible to construct an If: header that handles these
cases, but a shorthand that avoids recursive introspection on the server
would be useful, particularly in low-bandwidth environments.

- Seth Osher

  -----Original Message-----
  From: w3c-dist-auth-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-dist-auth-request@w3.org]On
Behalf Of Julian Reschke
  Sent: Tuesday, October 08, 2002 7:50 PM
  To: Clemm, Geoff; 'Webdav WG'
  Subject: RE: Interop issue: Proposal for fixing lock token provision

  Obviously I agree with Geoff.

  I'd like to underline that I'm *really* interested to understand why a
client would *ever* want a request to succeed if a lock which is supposed to
be present unexpectedly disappeared.

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

    -----Original Message-----
    From: w3c-dist-auth-request@w3.org
[mailto:w3c-dist-auth-request@w3.org]On Behalf Of Clemm, Geoff
    Sent: Tuesday, October 08, 2002 11:18 PM
    To: 'Webdav WG'
    Subject: RE: Interop issue: Proposal for fixing lock token provision

    Julian makes several good points.

    One is that we need to address the If header length problem in 2518bis
    in any case.  Even if we did provide a separate header that allowed
    invalid lock tokens, we still need to use the If header when we want
    to check for a list of valid lock tokens, or when we want to check for
    a list of etags.

    Another good point is that we don't have to argue about whether a
    client should be allowed to submit invalid lock tokens, because once
    the If header length problem is addressed (which we have to do
    anyway), then the "If: <tag> (<token>)(Not <token>)" provides this
    functionality without defining a header with new semantics.

    In an earlier message in this thread, the following points were raised
    as being problems with the "If:...Not..."  approach:

       PROBLEM #1: Servers may not support the OR, and the NOT, correctly,
       because most clients don't currently use this. This solution HAS NOT
       been proven, it is only theoretical. It might not work.

    It will work against all existing servers that are correctly
    implemented and that don't have an If header length problem, unlike
    the "new header" approach, which is guaranteed to fail against all
    existing servers.  If the servers are going to be updated,
    updating them to correctly implement existing semantics seems
    like a sensible approach to take, especially when the existing
    semantics are a "logical or" and a "logical not", built-in operators
    in most programming languages.

       PROBLEM #2: What if multiple locks are required (e.g. moving a
       collection that has multiple locked resources? What if the URLs are
       long? The IF header becomes very long and may be truncated by some
       proxies. E.g.

       If: <http://www.ics.uci.edu/users/f/fielding/index.html>
       NOT <opaquelocktoken:f81d4fae-7dec-11d0-a765-00a0c91e6bf6>)
       <http:// www.ics.uci.edu/users/f/fielding/anotherfile.html>
       NOT <opaquelocktoken:f81d4fae-7dec-11d0-a765-00a0c91e6bf7>)
       <http:// www.ics.uci.edu/users/f/fielding/thirdfile.html>
       NOT <opaquelocktoken:f81d4fae-7dec-11d0-a765-00a0c91e6bf8>)

    This is the If header length problem.  Once we fix the If header
    problem (which we have to do anyway), there no longer is a need
    for a new header to get this functionality.

       PROBLEM #3: Uck, this is really complicated. While it's useful to
       that a client can do this with some existing servers, provided they
       handle it correctly, surely we can do this in a simpler mechanism
       is less prone to interoperability problems. A simple header that
       the client to supply lock tokens to use is semantically equivalent to
       the above example, but shorter, simpler, and easier to implement.
       it can be split across multiple lines.

    Computer programs are really good at spitting out the same string
    twice, surrounded by some constant characters.  Given the verbosity of
    XML, and the fact that the Internet is used to stream video, cutting
    down the number of characters required to identify lock tokens does
    not strike me as a high priority task.  And since any client that
    wants to interoperate with an existing server has to be able to
    generate the If form of the request anyway, this is no simplification
    for an interoperable client that has to be able to generate both forms
    of the request.


    -----Original Message-----
    From: Julian Reschke [mailto:julian.reschke@gmx.de]

    Some thoughts:

    - it doesn't make sense to raise the header length problem as argument
      in favor of adding a new header. If the If header length is a
      problem, it needs to be fixed anyway -- no matter how the other
      issues are treated

    - As far as I now understand the client issue (BTW: why aren't the
      developers of this or these clients not participating in this
      dicussion??), they want to avoid to re-issue a request that
      specified a lock token just because the lock went away in the
      meantime. I *still* don't see why this is a problem -- if the lock
      was theirs, it's not supposed to go away without reason (such as bad
      timeout value). If the lock *wasn't* theirs, this is a case of "lock
      stealing", which certainly doesn't require to be optimized, right?

    - if a client really really wants the request to succeed either case
      (lock being present or not), can't he simply submit an If header
      production such as:

    If: <http://www.foo.bar/resource1> (<locktoken:a-write-lock-token>)(Not

Received on Tuesday, 8 October 2002 23:53:49 UTC

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