Re: Cache servers and Date: header

John Franks (
Sun, 18 Sep 94 11:13:13 CDT

In article <>,
Roy T. Fielding <fielding@avron.ICS.UCI.EDU,> wrote:
(in response to question why there should be a Date: header on HTTP responses)
>There are several reasons, which I outlined in a prior message. Perhaps
>most important, however, is that the whole reason we are passing all these
>inefficient text headers around is so that the message is a valid
>rfc822/MIME message and can thus be passed on to various mail and news
>gateways without changing the format. The Date: header is a REQUIRED
>header for rfc822.

Well that's a good reason. I'm persuaded. Now maybe you can persuade
the spec writers. I note that the current HTTP spec at
is quite explicit: the Date header is optional. And until the HTTP spec is
changed maybe "broken" is a little strong as an adjective to describe
servers which don't supply a Date header.

While we're on the topic of servers complying with the HTTP/1.0 spec
let me raise another issue. The document cited above is quite
explicit in saying that the status line (i.e. the first line) of the
server response must end with CR/LF and not just LF. Presumably the
same is true for other response headers; it is explicitly stated for
all request headers. Anyway NCSA httpd terminates header lines with
only LF. I haven't checked other servers. Does anyone care? Does it
make any difference.