re: Where to Put Response Metadata - Envelope or HTTP Headers? VIEW POST

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I would use the envelope. Don't tie your data format to a transport protocol implementation details. If you suddenly decide you want to store and replay data payloads or put it through queue or something like that, you'll be in trouble.

If a particular client doesn't need the envelope, it can easily strip it out as soon as the response comes in from the backend.

 

Devil's advocate incoming :-D

What would you do in case the payload format doesn't allow for wrapping in an envelope because it cannot be extended like that, such as a paginated slice of a CSV data dump? Or a chunk of a binary data stream?

 

This is now veering away from web api design, where you would use json/xml over http in 99% of cases. The answer is, it depends.

For csv, I would probably not include metadata at all, but require recipients to obtain it using a separate method. For binary data, you would probably get metadata as part of the binary format itself. But yes, maybe also as headers in the transport protocol.

It depends.

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