Re: A few semantic points for HTTP/1.0 draft

Bob Denny (
Wed, 30 Nov 1994 02:20:13 +0100

>I was told that 503 meant server busy and that the client should continue
>to retry after a slight delay until it could get through. Maybe I was
>mis-informed? For now I will remove the retry behavior so that Netscape
>fails gracefully when a 503 is encountered and not retry again. Whenever
>someone finally figures out what to do in the 503 case I'll reimplement
>the new solution.

Lou --

It was I that "created" the 503 code last summer. My intention, and the
thrust of the discussion on www-talk, was exactly that... The server is
temporarily too busy, try again in a "short while". I envisioned the
"short while" to be a few seconds, not milliseconds, not minutes. So
your response was appropriate.

However, Phillip's observations and ideas make sense to me, and I have
already posted my support for most of them. I too will sit this one out
for the time being and implement any additional 5nn codes for things
like "maintenance", or generate the "please try back in x time" response
headers, or whatever... as long as there is reasonable consensus amongst
the key implementers. I see Rob is monitoring things here as well. Good.

-- Bob