Re: #78: Relationship between 401, Authorization and WWW-Authenticate

Willy Tarreau <w@1wt.eu> Mon, 25 July 2011 04:42 UTC

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Date: Mon, 25 Jul 2011 06:40:46 +0200
From: Willy Tarreau <w@1wt.eu>
To: Adrien de Croy <adrien@qbik.com>
Cc: Mark Nottingham <mnot@mnot.net>, HTTP Working Group <ietf-http-wg@w3.org>
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Subject: Re: #78: Relationship between 401, Authorization and WWW-Authenticate
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Resent-Date: Mon, 25 Jul 2011 04:41:30 +0000

On Mon, Jul 25, 2011 at 01:29:30PM +1200, Adrien de Croy wrote:
> >>>1) Clarify that WWW-Authenticate can appear on any response, and that 
> >>>when it appears on any other than a 401, it means that the client can 
> >>>optionally present the request again with a credential.
> >>Does this mean it's only for other 4xx or for any status ? It might have
> >>implications with non-idempotent requests if a client can repost a request
> >>that led to a 200 for instance.
> >Any status. Good point about non-idempotent requests; we'll need to make 
> >clear it's not about automatically retrying requests, but instead that 
> >sending the same request with credentials might have a different affect.
> 
> isn't this redundant?
> 
> I see requests with credentials all the time, when no previous 
> WWW-Authorize had been sent in any response.

Normally they're doing this when they have seen once a 401 with
WWW-Authenticate. Here the idea is that the server might present
the header on something different from the 401 (eg: here is your
data, but if you authenticate I could probably serve something
more specific to you).

Regards,
Willy