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From Brian Behlendorf <>
Subject Re: WWW Form Bug Report: "On HEAD Requests, Server does not return Content-Length" on OTHER:ANY, I guess
Date Sun, 08 Oct 1995 21:31:56 GMT
On Sun, 8 Oct 1995, Rob Hartill wrote:
> > Submitter:
> > Operating system: OTHER:ANY, I guess, version: 
> > Extra Modules used: 
> > URL exhibiting problem:
> > 
> > Symptoms:
> > --
> > Normally on HEAD Requests, the server returns Content-Length of the document specified.
(as in then HTTP 1.0 specs).  try telnet 80      HEAD / HTTP/1.0   and telnet 80     HEAD / HTTP/1.0   Some programs rely on this and want to know the document
length before getting it.  I just tested it again and tried telnet 80 GET /
HTTP/1.0   It seems that Apache does NOT return any  Content-Length at all !!!  Heinrich 

> hi,
> My first thought is,
> how can a response with no content have a content length >0  ?
> This mail will go to the developers, who can ponder that thought.

According to 

| The HEAD method is identical to GET except that the server must not 
| return any Entity-Body in the response. The metainformation contained in 
| the HTTP headers in response to a HEAD request should be identical to the 
| information sent in response to a GET request. This method can be used for 
| obtaining metainformation about the resource identified by the Request-URI 
| without transferring the Entity-Body itself. This method is often used for 
| testing hypertext links for validity, accessibility, and
| recent modification. 

Looks like it should!  

Also, if a HEAD is performed on a CGI script, should the server run the 
script and only send the headers?  What if it is an nph script, is Apache 
considered nonconformant then?


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