Re: [websec] Strict-Transport-Security syntax redux

Adam Barth <ietf@adambarth.com> Fri, 30 December 2011 09:14 UTC

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From: Adam Barth <ietf@adambarth.com>
Date: Fri, 30 Dec 2011 01:13:48 -0800
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To: Julian Reschke <julian.reschke@gmx.de>
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Subject: Re: [websec] Strict-Transport-Security syntax redux
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On Fri, Dec 30, 2011 at 12:53 AM, Julian Reschke <julian.reschke@gmx.de> wrote:
> On 2011-12-30 09:46, Adam Barth wrote:
>>
>> On Fri, Dec 30, 2011 at 12:18 AM, Julian Reschke<julian.reschke@gmx.de>
>>  wrote:
>>>
>>> On 2011-12-29 22:45, Adam Barth wrote:
>>>>
>>>> Chrome does not (and will not) implement quoted-string for the STS
>>>> header for the reasons I've explained previously.  You're welcome to
>>>> file bugs, but I'm just going to close them WONTFIX.
>>>
>>> So your code intentionally is non-compliant with STS.
>>>
>>> I note that you are both a WG member and also listed as one of the
>>> authors
>>> of the spec. Don't you think that this puts you into a strange position?
>>
>> Not really.  IMHO, we should just change the spec.
>
> If you believe that support for quoted-string in extension directives is the
> wrong thing to do, please go ahead and lobby for a change.

Using quoted-string in the extension directive is the wrong thing to
do.  Because none of the actual directives use quoted-string, folks
are likely to write parsers that don't handle all the complexities of
quoted-string (which are legion).  That means when we go to actually
use quoted-string in a future directive, it won't actually work in
many user agents.

On the other hand, if we spec the extension directives without
quoted-string, future extensions will work even if folks mistakenly
implement quote-string (because DQUOTE is forbidden in the extension
syntax I suggested above, so we'll never trigger the mistaken
quoted-string parsing code).  Everyone lives a happy life.

Anyway, it's all somewhat of a moot point because the above will
happen regardless of what we write in the spec.  Even if we write
quoted-string, when folks attempt to use these extension directives in
the future, they'll find that they don't work and they'll update the
syntax not to use quoted-string.

Adam