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Table Of Contents  The TCP/IP Guide
 9  TCP/IP Application Layer Protocols, Services and Applications (OSI Layers 5, 6 and 7)
      9  TCP/IP Key Applications and Application Protocols
           9  TCP/IP File and Message Transfer Applications and Protocols (FTP, TFTP, Electronic Mail, USENET, HTTP/WWW, Gopher)
                9  TCP/IP World Wide Web (WWW, "The Web") and the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP)
                     9  TCP/IP Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP)

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TCP/IP Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP)
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HTTP General Operation and Connections
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HTTP Overview, History, Versions and Standards
(Page 3 of 3)

Future HTTP Versions

HTTP/1.1 continues to be the current version of the Hypertext Transfer Protocol, even though it is now several years old. This may seem somewhat surprising, given how widely used HTTP is. Then again, it may be the fact that so many millions of servers and clients implement HTTP/1.1 that no new version has been created. For a while there was speculation that version 1.2 of HTTP would be developed, but this has not happened.

In the late 1990s, work began on a method of expanding HTTP through extensions to the existing version 1.1. Development of the HTTP Extension Framework proceeded for a number of years, and in 1998 a proposed draft for a new Internet standard was created. However, as I just said, HTTP/1.1 is so widely deployed and so important that it was very difficult to achieve consensus on any proposal to modify it. As a result, when the HTTP Extension Framework was finally published in February 2000 as RFC 2774, the universal acceptance required for a new standard did not exist. The framework was given “experimental” status, and never became a formal standard.

Key Concept: The engine of the World Wide Web is the application protocol that defines how Web servers and clients exchange information: the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP). The first version of HTTP, HTTP/0.9, was part of the early World Wide Web and was a very simple request/response protocol with limited capabilities that could transfer only text files. The first widely-used version was HTTP/1.0, which is a more complete protocol that allows the transport of many types of files and resources. The current version is HTTP/1.1, which expands HTTP/1.0’s capabilities with several features that improve the efficiency of transfers and address many of the needs of the rapidly growing modern World Wide Web.


 


Previous Topic/Section
TCP/IP Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP)
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12
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Next Page
HTTP General Operation and Connections
Next Topic/Section

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Version 3.0 - Version Date: September 20, 2005

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