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wsrp-interop message

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Subject: where to transport cookies returned by portlets (JSR286)

With the (re-) introduction of setCookie() to the actionResponse in JSR286
the question arose where portlet cookies should be transferred between the
producer and consumer.

We basically have identified two distinct non-interoperable choices:
1. use MimeResponse.clientAttributes to return cookies and
clientData.clientAttributes to send cookies back to producer
This treats cookies as any other headers and puts their management to the
application level. Here the application needs to deal with the creation of
set-cookie & cookie headers and stuff them into the WSRP structures.
2. use HTTP cookies on the transport level to return and receive cookies
Producer & Consumer rely on the WS-stack transport level HTTP binding to
send cookies back and forth

The following questions arose during the discussion
1. are producers allowed to return cookies as a result of any markup
portType operation or just on initCookie()?
The spec seems ambigeous here:
Section 5.5. says: "In general, the Producer completely manages its own
environment, including items such as the initialization of cookies when
using the HTTP transport."
Section 5.7 says: "If a Producer indicates that it uses cookies, the
Consumer MUST ensure that any cookies the Producer sets are available on
all invocations within the Markup interface. Another implication of the
Producer indicating it uses cookies is that the Consumer should be aware of
the issues involved in protocol transitions [...]"
This seems to refer to initCookie meta-data in the service description and
only to that.
If  cookies are allowed to be set at any time, portlet cookies could be
returned as transport level cookies with pbia().

2. can MimeResponse.clientAttributes be used to return cookies in a pbia()?
Typically the MarkupContext (MimeResponse) structure in UpdateResponse
returned by pbia() is ment to hold markup returned as an optimization to
avoid the seperate render phase.
Since JSR286 portlets can return cookies in pbia() it seems awkward to
return a MarkupContext with just clientAttributes in it.

3. can applications on top of the WS stack set cookies "manually" at
Some web service stacks may hide transport level details from the
application layer. WSRP producer implementations may not be able to set
transport level cookies.

Mit freundlichen Gruessen / best regards,

        Richard Jacob
IBM Lab Boeblingen, Germany
Dept. 2289, WebSphere Portal Server Development 1
WSRP Team Lead
WSRP Architecture & Standardization
Phone: ++49 7031 16-3469  -  Fax: ++49 7031 16-4888

IBM Deutschland Entwicklung GmbH
Vorsitzender des Aufsichtsrats: Martin Jetter
Geschäftsführung: Herbert Kircher
Sitz der Gesellschaft: Böblingen
Registergericht: Amtsgericht Stuttgart, HRB 243294

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