After years of effort, the HTTPBIS working group of the IETF has completed revisions of the venerable RFC2616 that defines the HTTP/1.1 protocol. These revisions clarify ambiguous sections of the original, deprecate problematic features, and reflect real-world implementation experiences. There’s a quick summary of the updates here.
The specification has been broken up into six main specifications, and a number of ancillary specifications:
- RFC 7230: Message Syntax and Routing
- RFC 7231: Semantics and Content
- RFC 7232: Conditional Requests
- RFC 7233: Range Request
- RFC 7234: Caching
- RFC 7235: Authentication
- RFC 7236: Authentication Scheme Registrations
- RFC 7237: Method Registrations
- RFC 7238: the 308 status code
- RFC 7239: Forwarded HTTP extension
Meanwhile, the Internet Explorer and WinINET teams are at work on the next version (HTTP/2) of the protocol. It’s a very exciting time to be working on browser networking.
Incidentally, if you’re interested in learning the nitty-gritty of browser networking, Ilya Grigorik’s excellent and thorough book High Performance Browser Networking can be read online for free, or purchased at Amazon.