Importance of Content Type in http
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Importance of Content-Type in HTTP¶
- The content type status, part of an HTTP header, can tell a browser what type of content, e.g. a PNG image or an HTML page, is being transmitted.
- This will affect the way a browser will process the file.
- The content type, also called MIME (Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions) or Media types, is a statement in the response header of the web server which gives the browser information regarding the format of a transmitted file.
- This enables the browser to work faster, as the type of file does not have to be identified after the file has arrived.
Every non-empty response from a web server should contain a Content-Type
When should we use
- The client sets a content type for the body it is sending to the server (e.g. for Post or Put) to tell the server what type of data it is receiving.
- The server sets a content type for the response.
What happens if I do not specify a content type?
- If there is no indication as to the resource type of a file, the browser must find this out itself.
- Most current browsers will read the first bytes of the file and try to compare them with the most common content types.
- This can work well, but it does not always. Especially in the case of texts with unusual character encoding, it can lead to a browser recognising text but incorrectly reproducing the special characters that it contains.
There are sometimes instances in which the browser tries to recognise the content type even when that content has been defined.
- This is called MIME sniffing, and it can be prevented with a special response header, the X-Content-Type-Options, through a nosniff directive.
The MIME type is always displayed as a combination of two pieces of information, one indicating what type of medium it is and the other the sub-type of the medium. It looks like this:
- The information communicated via application tells the browser that the files are to be opened with a certain programme.
- The most interesting aspect is
Last updated: 2022-11-07