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Versions: 00

Network Working Group                                      M. Nottingham
Internet-Draft                                            March 14, 2014
Updates: 5789 (if approved)
Intended status: Informational
Expires: September 15, 2014


                     The 2NN Patch HTTP Status Code
                 draft-nottingham-http-patch-status-00

Abstract

   This document specifies the 2NN Patch HTTP status code to allow
   servers to perform partial updates of stored responses in client
   caches.

Status of this Memo

   This Internet-Draft is submitted in full conformance with the
   provisions of BCP 78 and BCP 79.

   Internet-Drafts are working documents of the Internet Engineering
   Task Force (IETF).  Note that other groups may also distribute
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   Internet-Drafts are draft documents valid for a maximum of six months
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   time.  It is inappropriate to use Internet-Drafts as reference
   material or to cite them other than as "work in progress."

   This Internet-Draft will expire on September 15, 2014.

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2014 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the
   document authors.  All rights reserved.

   This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal
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   described in the Simplified BSD License.




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Table of Contents

   1.  Introduction  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
     1.1.  Notational Conventions  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
   2.  The 2NN Patch Status Code . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
     2.1.  The Patched Header Field  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
   3.  IANA Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
     3.1.  2NN Patch HTTP Status Code  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
     3.2.  Accept-Patch Header Field . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
     3.3.  Patched Header Field  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
   4.  Security Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
   5.  References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
     5.1.  Normative References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
     5.2.  Informative References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
   Appendix A.  2NN Patch and HTTP/2 Server Push . . . . . . . . . . . 6
   Author's Address  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8



































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1.  Introduction

   [RFC5246] defines the HTTP PATCH method as a means of selectively
   updating the state of a resource on a server.  This document
   complements that specification by specifying a means for a server to
   selectively update a stored response on a client - usually, in a
   cache [I-D.ietf-httpbis-p6-cache].

1.1.  Notational Conventions

   The key words "MUST", "MUST NOT", "REQUIRED", "SHALL", "SHALL NOT",
   "SHOULD", "SHOULD NOT", "RECOMMENDED", "MAY", and "OPTIONAL" in this
   document are to be interpreted as described in [RFC2119].

   This document uses the Augmented BNF defined by [RFC5246], and
   additionally uses the entity-tag rule defined in
   [I-D.ietf-httpbis-p4-conditional].


2.  The 2NN Patch Status Code

   The 2NN (Patch) status code allows a response to patch a stored
   response in a cache, by reusing the patch formats of [RFC5789].  In
   some sense, it is the complement of the HTTP PATCH request method.

   TODO: is this a 2NN or 3xx?

   Clients can advertise support for 2NN (Patch), along with the patch
   formats supported in it, by using the Accept-Patch header field in
   requests.  For example:

       GET /foo HTTP/1.1
       Host: api.example.com
       Accept-Patch: application/patch+json
       If-None-Match: "abcdef", "ghijkl"
       User-Agent: Example/1.0

   If the server can generate a patch for one of the entity tags
   provided in If-None-Match, in one of the accepted patch formats, it
   can generate a 2NN (Patch) response:

       HTTP/1.1 2NN Patch
       Content-Type: application/patch+json
       Patched: "ghijkl"
       ETag: "mnopqrs"

   The entity tag carried by the ETag header field is associated with
   the selected representation - i.e., the stored response after the



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   patch is applied.

   The Patched header field identifies the representation to apply the
   patch to, as indicated by the entity-tag provided in If-None-Match
   request header field; see Section 2.1.

   Therefore, in the example above, the stored response "ghijkl" is
   being patched, with the resulting stored response having the entity
   tag "mnopqrs".

   Application of a 2NN (Patch) response happens in a manner very
   similar to the process for freshening a stored response by applying a
   304 (Not Modified), as described in [I-D.ietf-httpbis-p6-cache],
   Section 4.3.4.

   In particular, the stored response to apply a 2NN (Patch) response to
   is the same; if none is selected, the patch fails, and the client MAY
   resubmit the request without an Accept-Patch header field, in order
   to get a full response.

   If a stored response is selected, clients MUST update it in the
   following manner:

   o  The value of the Content-Length header field MUST be adjusted to
      reflect the length of the patched response body.
   o  The ETag header field MUST be replaced (or inserted, if not
      present) with the value of the Patched header field in the 2NN
      response (if present).
   o  Other header fields in the 2NN response MUST update the stored
      response, in the same manner as described in
      [I-D.ietf-httpbis-p6-cache], Section 4.3.4.  However, the
      following fields MUST not be updated: Content-Type, Patched.

   The 2NN (Patch) status code SHOULD NOT be generated if the request
   did not include If-None-Match, unless conflicts are handled by the
   patch format itself (e.g., allowing a patch to append to an array),
   or externally.

   Intermediaries MAY append the Accept-Patch header field to requests,
   or append new values to it, if they will process 2NN responses for
   the patch format(s) they add.  Likewise, intermediaries MAY generate
   2NN (Patch) responses under the conditions specified here.

   The 2NN status code is not cacheable by default, and is not a
   representation of any identified resource.






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2.1.  The Patched Header Field

   The Patched header field identifies the stored representation that a
   patch is to be applied to in a 2NN (Patch) response.

       Patched = entity-tag


3.  IANA Considerations

3.1.  2NN Patch HTTP Status Code

   This document defines the 2NN (Patch) HTTP status code, as per
   [I-D.ietf-httpbis-p2-semantics].

   o  Status Code (3 digits): TBD
   o  Short Description: Patch
   o  Pointer to specification text: Section 2

3.2.  Accept-Patch Header Field

   This document updates [RFC5789] to allow the Accept-Patch HTTP header
   field to be used in requests, which ought to be reflected in the
   registry.

3.3.  Patched Header Field

   This document defines a new HTTP header, field, "Patched", to be
   registered in the Permanent Message Header Registry, as per
   [RFC3864].

   o  Header field name: Patched
   o  Applicable protocol: http
   o  Status: standard
   o  Author/Change controller: IETF
   o  Specification document(s): [this document]
   o  Related information:


4.  Security Considerations

   2NN (Patch) can be brittle when the application of a patch fails,
   because the client has no way to report the failure of a patch to the
   server.  This assymetry might be exploited by an attacker, but can be
   mitigated by judicious use of strong ETags.

   Some patch formats might have additional security considerations.




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5.  References

5.1.  Normative References

   [I-D.ietf-httpbis-p4-conditional]
              Fielding, R. and J. Reschke, "Hypertext Transfer Protocol
              (HTTP/1.1): Conditional Requests",
              draft-ietf-httpbis-p4-conditional-26 (work in progress),
              February 2014.

   [I-D.ietf-httpbis-p6-cache]
              Fielding, R., Nottingham, M., and J. Reschke, "Hypertext
              Transfer Protocol (HTTP/1.1): Caching",
              draft-ietf-httpbis-p6-cache-26 (work in progress),
              February 2014.

   [RFC2119]  Bradner, S., "Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate
              Requirement Levels", BCP 14, RFC 2119, March 1997.

   [RFC5246]  Dierks, T. and E. Rescorla, "The Transport Layer Security
              (TLS) Protocol Version 1.2", RFC 5246, August 2008.

   [RFC5789]  Dusseault, L. and J. Snell, "PATCH Method for HTTP",
              RFC 5789, March 2010.

5.2.  Informative References

   [I-D.ietf-httpbis-http2]
              Belshe, M., Peon, R., and M. Thomson, "Hypertext Transfer
              Protocol version 2", draft-ietf-httpbis-http2-10 (work in
              progress), February 2014.

   [I-D.ietf-httpbis-p2-semantics]
              Fielding, R. and J. Reschke, "Hypertext Transfer Protocol
              (HTTP/1.1): Semantics and Content",
              draft-ietf-httpbis-p2-semantics-26 (work in progress),
              February 2014.

   [RFC3864]  Klyne, G., Nottingham, M., and J. Mogul, "Registration
              Procedures for Message Header Fields", BCP 90, RFC 3864,
              September 2004.


Appendix A.  2NN Patch and HTTP/2 Server Push

   In HTTP/2 [I-D.ietf-httpbis-http2], it is possible to "push" a
   request/response pair into a client's cache. 2NN (Patch) can be used
   with this mechanism to perform partial updates on stored responses.



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   For example, if a cache has this response stored for
   "http://example.com/list":

       200 OK
       Content-Type: application/json
       Cache-Control: max-age=3600
       ETag: "aaa"

       { "items": ["a"]}

   A HTTP/2 server could partially update it by sending the request/
   response pair (using pseudo-HTTP/1 syntax for purposes of
   illustration):

       GET /list
       Host: example.com
       If-None-Match: "aaa"
       Accept-Patch: application/patch+json

       2NN Patch
       Content-Type: application/patch+json
       ETag: "aab"
       Patched: "aaa"

       [
           { "op": "add", "path": "/items/1", "value": "b" }
       ]

   Once the patch is applied, the stored response is now:

       200 OK
       Content-Type: application/json
       Cache-Control: max-age=3600
       ETag: "aab"

       { "items": ["a", "b"]}

   Note that this approach requires a server pushing partial responses
   to know the stored response's ETag, since the client cache will
   silently ignore the push if it does not match that provided in
   "Patched".  Likewise, clients that are not conformant to this
   specification will silently drop such pushes, since the status code
   is not recognised (as per [I-D.ietf-httpbis-p6-cache]).

   However, it is possible to do some partial updates without strong
   consistency.  For example, if the stored response is as above, and
   the server simply wishes to append an value to an array, without
   regard for the current content of the array (because, presumably,



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   ordering of its content is not important), it can push:

       GET /list
       Host: example.com
       Accept-Patch: application/patch+json

       2NN Patch
       Content-Type: application/patch+json

       [
           { "op": "add", "path": "/items/-", "value": "b" }
       ]

   Here, the resulting document would be as above, but since entity tags
   are not provided, the operation will succeed as long as the patch
   application succeeds.


Author's Address

   Mark Nottingham

   Email: mnot@mnot.net
   URI:   http://www.mnot.net/



























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