RE: [HTTPfutures] Dan Connolly on HTTP goofs and musings / Two Way Web

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From: Henrik Frystyk Nielsen (
Date: Fri Aug 18 2000 - 10:32:27 PDT

> Proxies unilaterally disconnect long lived streams at a
> timeout, usually
> 5-15 mins. Without acks it is impossible for a sender to know which
> messages were sent but not received. So an http based
> protocol like SOAP
> has to support retransmission by numbering packets, caching
> them, setting up
> some kind of ack, and manually doing reassembly. In other words, the
> browser assumptions of the infrastructure force us to
> reinvent TCP on top of
> HTTP as if HTTP were IP, and that leads to a situation where
> we get TCP,
> except slow and buggy. bleh. bleh. bleh.

There is nothing new in the fact that TCP reliability breaks down in
connection reset phase - it can't really be done any other way. Reset is
by definition messy. There is nothing specific to proxy servers here - you
can't pipeline POST requests and proxies don't buffer responses up.

There is also nothing new in that you might have hooks for realibilty and
acknowledgements at several layers. This doesn't mean that you have to
reinvent TCP.

Of course SOAP isn't particularly designed to be an HTTP based protocol.


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