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HTTP Extensions

Document Charter HTTP Extensions WG (httpext)
Title HTTP Extensions
Last updated 2000-06-05
State Approved
WG State Concluded
IESG Responsible AD (None)
Charter edit AD (None)
Send notices to (None)


As the World Wide Web has grown and become widespread, the use
of the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) has become widespread
as well. In particular, HTTP has become a popular transaction
or transport protocol to build on top of. In ways similar to
protocols built upon TCP, HTTP has become quite popular at
providing basic services such as a framework for entity transport,
authentication (with Basic, Digest or other),encryption (with TLS
or SSL), Proxy/Firewall Boundary (PFB) transiting as well as
caching and or replication.

With new protocols based on HTTP becoming increasingly popular,
it is important to attempt to lay a framework for using HTTP as a
common transport. Most importantly, a clear mechanism is needed
for extension and higher level layer detection. In addition, a set
of recommendations for using HTTP in a manner consistent with the
semantics and vision of the HTTP evolution group is desired to
ensure that new protocols built upon HTTP are to remain compatible
and functional as HTTP evolves. Finally, along with an extension
mechanism, appropriate registries and or procedures are desired to
avoid conflicts and compatibility issues between new extensions,
higher level layered protocols and the HTTP evolution itself.