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From "Andrew Gerweck" <andrew.gerw...@presedia.com>
Subject Closing connections on error causes problems
Date Thu, 04 Apr 2002 22:28:25 GMT
I'm not sure why the code works this way, but I believe it's wrong.  On
line 279 of org.apache.catalina.connector.http.HttpResponseImpl.java,
the following code is found:

        if (getStatus() < HttpServletResponse.SC_BAD_REQUEST) {
            if ((!isStreamInitialized()) && (getContentLength() == -1)
                && (getStatus() >= 200)
                && (getStatus() != SC_NOT_MODIFIED)
                && (getStatus() != SC_NO_CONTENT))
                setContentLength(0);
        } else {
            setHeader("Connection", "close");
        }

This means that any time there's a 4xx or 5xx, the connection is closed.
This seems to be strange behavior, since the HTTP/1.1 spec states:

"Persistent HTTP connections have a number of advantages: ... errors can
be reported without the penalty of closing the TCP connection."

Tomcat's behavior isn't technically illegal, but it's a violation of the
intent of the specification.

My small company has an application that occasionally needs to act as a
communications proxy.  We've found that the code above makes it
impossible to complete an NT authentication because Tomcat closes the
connection for a 401.  I'm sure some will be happy enough to mumble
about Microsoft. :(

Anyway, we've had enough luck changing SC_BAD_REQUEST to
SC_INTERNAL_SERVER_ERROR.  I suspect that the best behavior would be to
remove the else clause altogether.  I'll let someone who's more
experienced with Tomcat's code make the call.

Thanks,
Andy Gerweck


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