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Enabling asynchronous requests in a client / server application environment using HTTP(S)

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000013385D
Original Publication Date: 2001-Jun-26
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jun-18
Document File: 3 page(s) / 59K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

Enabling asynchronous requests in a client server application environment using HTTP(S) Subject of Publication Nowadays, applications are written using modern Internet Technology. Simple User Interfaces are rendered using HTML pages, more sophisticated User Interfaces using Java Applets. To be able to process data centrally, the Browser (HTML pages) respectively a Java Applet must communicate to a server. This publication deals with communication between Applets and servers. State of the Art

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  Enabling asynchronous requests in a client / server application environment using HTTP(S)

Subject of Publication

    Nowadays, applications are written using modern Internet Technology. Simple User Interfaces are rendered using HTML pages, more sophisticated User Interfaces using Java Applets. To be able to process data centrally, the Browser (HTML pages) respectively a Java Applet must communicate to a server. This publication deals with communication between Applets and servers.

State of the Art

    Currently there are many techniques for Applets to communicate to servers. Applets may use protocols like RMI respectively CORBA/IIOP to talk to specialized servers. For an Applet talking to a Servlet - a server-side Java application that implements a determined specification - it is also common to use HTTP/HTTPS. In some cases the Applet may use special TCP/IP functionalities to talk to proprietary servers like database-servers. Each technique has some advantages and disadvantages:

RMI, CORBA/IIOP bzw. TCP/IP:

+ easy, comfortable programming

- usually not forwarded by firewalls

-> commonly used in Intranet environments, unfavourable for the Internet

- only synchronous communication possible

-> to obtain asynchronous information, the applet must "poll", that means repetitively asking for new information within specific

intervalls

HTTP respectively HTTPS:

+ usually forwarded by firewalls + (only HTTPS) security by encryption and Server Authentication

- only synchronous communication possible

-> To obtain asynchronous information, the applet must "poll", that means repetitively ask for new information within specific

intervalls

Improved Concept

    This publication combines the previously mentioned advantages with an asynchronous communication facility. The requirements are:

usually forwarded by firewalls

(optional) security by encryption and Server Authentication

easy, comfortable programming

asynchronous communication

    HTTP(S) is the furthermost used protocol if communication is to be forwarded by firewalls without configuration effort. Therefore, this concept uses HTTP respectively

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HTTPS if security requirements have to be met. To facilitate programming, a special function library is provided for both Java Applet and Servlet.

    Firewalls usually block any request that is sent from the Internet to the secured network (Intranet). Only communication that is initiated by a Computer in the Intranet is permitted.

Thus there are two options for asynchronous communicatio...