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Hypertext Transfer Protocol (Active WG)
Art Area: Adam Roach, Alexey Melnikov, Ben Campbell | 2007-Oct-23 —  

IETF-70 httpbis minutes


These are also available from the materials page:
HTTP: How We Got Here and Where We Should Go
HTTPbis: Charter and Process
HTTPbis security properties


          Minutes of the HTTPbis Working Group meeting in Vancouver, December 2007
          Submitted by Mark Nottingham
          * First session
          We started with a presentation from Larry Masinter, chair of the former
          HTTP Working Group, about the history of HTTP, with an emphasis on
          lessons learned in the previous process (see attachment).
          After a review of the charter, Mark Nottingham proposed a working process
          for the group (see attachment). Yves Lafon then summarised progress
          on draft-lafon-rfc2616bis.
          Roy Fielding then gave an overview of the partitioned drafts he
          submitted. After discussion, the sense of the room was to move forward
          with the partitioned drafts as a starting point.
          Afterwards, Julian Reschke gave a presentation (see attachment) of i36,
          the ABNF conversion. After discussion of different aspects, the editors
          were directed to proceed with a straight mechanical translation, with
          issues of style and readability that this may bring up to be dealt
          with separately.
          Issue 30 regarding LWS and headers was discussed; it was suggested to the
          editors that they use different BNF rules for parse vs. generate (e.g.,
          LWS and BWS for "bad white space"), as long as the number of situations
          where this is necessary is small. 
          Other issues were discussed without significant progress.
          For scribed logs of the session, see
          After discussion, the sense of the room was to use
          draft-sayre-http-security-variance as a base for the security properties
          * Second session
          Alexey Melkinov kicked off discussion of the security properties document
          with a presentation (see attached).
          Further discussion centred around whether the group should attempt to
          revise RFC2617 (to fix interop issues / errata, not revise the mechanisms
          themselves) and the Cookie specification; both were deferred, although it
          was acknowledged that part of the HTTPbis work is revising the "framework"
          of authentication (e.g., WWW-Authenticate, 401).
          Cyrus Daboo gave a presentation to frame discussion of issue 22 (metadata
          on PUT and other responses). After discussion, it was agreed in the room
          that the way forward is to clarify intent that ETag is a response header,
          and add admonitions about its use to implementors. 
          Issue 81 (content negotiation for media types) was discussed; Larry
          Masinter agreed to write text that contextualises it and cautions
          against misuse.
          Discussion of issue 93 (repeating single-value headers) centred around
          whether HTTP should document error behaviours. The sense of the room was
          that the fact that they aren't specified because the variety of possible
          valid error handling behavours is too broad should be documented in the
          draft, which Roy Fielding agreed to do. 
          It was announced that Roy Fielding, Yves Lafon and Julian Reschke would
          share editorship of the partitioned documents, and that a -00 and ideally
          -01 draft of them would be available by the new year. 
          For scribed logs of the session, see

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