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TCP/IP Guide by Charles M. Kozierok

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HTTP Methods

An HTTP Request message sent by a client to a server obviously requests that the server do something. All client/server protocols provide a way for the client to prompt the server to take action, generally by having the client give the server a series of commands. HTTP, in contrast, has methods, rather than commands. Each client Request message begins with the specification of the method that is the subject of the request.

What is the difference between a method and a command? In practical terms, nothing; they are the same. So why does HTTP use the term method instead of command? That's a good question. The answer can be found in the abstract of the standard defining HTTP/1.0, RFC 1945. It states, in part, that HTTP is "a generic, ...

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