Re: Statefulness (was ...URL...)

Darren New (
Fri, 1 Dec 1995 12:09:11 +0000

#> we're required to have *some* form of access control to our httpd
#server. we > require a username/password combination to "login" to our
#application. once > login has been authorized, we generate a unique
#session key to identify this > user in the system until the user either
#logs out or timeouts. the session > key is passed between the forms as a
#hidden field. our cgi program embeds > the session key in the next form
#served. this way we maintain whatever state > information that we need in
#our application (which is a server that the cgi > calls). the application
#maintains a "user thread" that contains lots of stuff, > and is keyed off
#the session key. > > this access control is by not means bullet proof, but
#all we need at this time.

Yes, that's how earlier versions of my software worked as well. The
problem was invoking the overhead of parsing HTML to find the embedded
URLs on each hit when all I really wanted was to know who was
accessing which pages. :-) It would be nice if the server could send
back an authorization header with the username/password to be used by the
client for this realm, but unfortunately, that's not how it was
specified. Hence, either the user has to type the stuff into a form that
you have no control over the look&feel of (i.e., the authorization
pop-up), or you have to embed stuff in the URL.