Re: 3 Proposals: session ID, business-card auth, customer auth

Brian Behlendorf (
Tue, 18 Jul 1995 15:36:52 -0700 (PDT)

On Tue, 18 Jul 1995, James Gosling wrote:
> > Hmmm... care to give some details about these "ideas coming down
> > the pipe?" Here are my thoughts, after having surveyed this space
> > for a while:
> >
> >
> > ******* I. The Request-ID: header field:
> > ******* II. The business-card authentication scheme
> The problem I have with many schemes like this (leaving the ethical
> questions alone for now!) is that they don't work in the face of proxy
> caching. Either the cache uses the fields as part of the "cache key",
> dramatically reducing the hit rate, or it doesn't, defeating the
> purpose of the extension: to get access information back to the
> provider.

Definitely don't use it as a cache key. I see two things happening:

1) The cache sends an If-Modified-Since request, *with* the Request-ID
from the new request. Server returns a 304, and keeps the request-ID for
more info.

2) The cache opts to not send an If-Modified-Since request, instead
serving up files locally. This is due to a cache config setting to
keep possibly stale documents around for a short time (not recommended
but impossible to control) or an Expires: header on the content with a
later date than the current one. In this case, it's true that the server
does not get the Request-ID, but then the server would never see that
access anyways.

Both cases are just like the current situation when it comes to collecting
information, so I don't see it as a problem. I believe Simon Spero suggested
that there were mechanisms in HTTP-NG to relay this type of information at a
later point in time back to the server.


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