The wais URI Scheme
RFC 4156

Document Type RFC - Historic (August 2005; Errata)
Was draft-hoffman-wais-uri (individual in app area)
Last updated 2013-03-02
Stream IETF
Formats plain text pdf html
Stream WG state (None)
Consensus Unknown
Document shepherd No shepherd assigned
IESG IESG state RFC 4156 (Historic)
Telechat date
Responsible AD Ted Hardie
Send notices to (None)
Network Working Group                                         P. Hoffman
Request for Comments: 4156                                VPN Consortium
Category: Historic                                           August 2005

                          The wais URI Scheme

Status of This Memo

   This memo defines a Historic Document for the Internet community.  It
   does not specify an Internet standard of any kind.  Distribution of
   this memo is unlimited.

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (C) The Internet Society (2005).


   This document specifies the wais Uniform Resource Identifier (URI)
   scheme that was originally specified in RFC 1738.  The purpose of
   this document is to allow RFC 1738 to be made obsolete while keeping
   the information about the scheme on standards track.

1.  Introduction

   URIs were previously defined in RFC 2396 [RFC2396], which was updated
   by RFC 3986 [RFC3986].  Those documents also specify how to define
   schemes for URIs.

   The first definitions for many URI schemes appeared in RFC 1738
   [RFC1738].  Because that document has been made obsolete, this
   document copies the wais URI scheme from it to allow that material to
   remain on standards track.

2.  Scheme Definition

   The WAIS URL scheme is used to designate WAIS databases, searches, or
   individual documents available from a WAIS database.  The WAIS
   protocol is described in RFC 1625 [RFC1625].  Although the WAIS
   protocol is based on Z39.50-1988, the WAIS URL scheme is not intended
   for use with arbitrary Z39.50 services.

   Historical note: The WAIS protocol was not widely implemented and
   almost no WAIS servers are in use today.

Hoffman                         Historic                        [Page 1]
RFC 4156                  The wais URI Scheme                August 2005

   A WAIS URL takes one of the following forms:


   If :<port> is omitted, the port defaults to 210.  The first form
   designates a WAIS database that is available for searching.  The
   second form designates a particular search. <database> is the name of
   the WAIS database being queried.

   The third form designates a particular document, within a WAIS
   database, to be retrieved.  In this form <wtype> is the WAIS
   designation of the type of the object.  Many WAIS implementations
   require that a client know the "type" of an object prior to
   retrieval; the type is returned along with the internal object
   identifier in the search response.  The <wtype> is included in the
   URL in order to give the client interpreting the URL adequate
   information to actually retrieve the document.

   The <wpath> of a WAIS URL consists of the WAIS document-id.  The WAIS
   document-id should be treated opaquely; it may only be decomposed by
   the server that issued it.

3.  Security Considerations

   Many security considerations for URI schemes are discussed in
   [RFC3986].  There are no security considerations listed in [RFC1625],
   but it should be noted that there is no privacy nor authentication
   specified in the WAIS protocol.

4.  Informative References

   [RFC1738]  Berners-Lee, T., Masinter, L., and M. McCahill, "Uniform
              Resource Locators (URL)", RFC 1738, December 1994.

   [RFC2396]  Berners-Lee, T., Fielding, R., and L. Masinter, "Uniform
              Resource Identifiers (URI): Generic Syntax", RFC 2396,
              August 1998.

   [RFC3986]  Berners-Lee, T., Fielding, R., and L. Masinter, "Uniform
              Resource Identifier (URI): Generic Syntax", STD 66,
              RFC 3986, January 2005.

   [RFC1625]  St. Pierre, M., Fullton, J., Gamiel, K., Goldman, J.,
              Kahle, B., Kunze, J., Morris, H., and F. Schiettecatte,
              "WAIS over Z39.50-1988", RFC 1625, June 1994.

Hoffman                         Historic                        [Page 2]
RFC 4156                  The wais URI Scheme                August 2005

Author's Address

   Paul Hoffman
   VPN Consortium
   127 Segre Place
   Santa Cruz, CA  95060


Hoffman                         Historic                        [Page 3]
RFC 4156                  The wais URI Scheme                August 2005

Full Copyright Statement

   Copyright (C) The Internet Society (2005).

   This document is subject to the rights, licenses and restrictions
Show full document text