What is the http protocol?

We explain what http is and and what this protocol is for. Also, how it works, differences between the http and https protocol.

  1. What is the http protocol?

The http (of English HyperText Transfer Protocol or Protocol of Transfer of Hyper Texts) is the protocol of transmission of information of the World Wide Web , that is to say, the code that is established so that the requesting computer and the one that contains the requested information can “Speak” the same language when transmitting information over the network.

The http establishes criteria for computer syntax and semantics (form and meaning) for the establishment of communication between the different elements that constitute the web architecture: servers , clients, proxies. It was created in 1999 by the World Wide Web Consortium in collaboration with the Internet Engineering Task Force.

It is a “stateless” protocol, that is, it does not keep a record of previous visits but always begins again. The information related to previous visits is stored in these systems in the so-called “cookies”, stored in the client system .

The http has gone through numerous versions until reaching the current one at the beginning of the 21st century, called HTTP / 2 . His first attempts came in 1991 and they threw partial versions in 1996, 1999, 2000 and, finally, the one in force in 2015.

  1. What is the http protocol for?

The http, as it has been said, is a language that mediates between the client’s requests and the server’s responses on the Internet , to allow a fluid communication and in the same “language”. This protocol establishes the guidelines to follow, the request methods (called “verbs”) and has some flexibility to incorporate new requests and functionalities, especially as the versions progress.

Considering that the Internet is little more than a complex network of information exchange between remote computers, this type of digital tools are key in establishing the basis for ordering and facilitating the transmission of information.

  1. How does the http protocol work?

Http operation is based on a scheme request-response between the web server and the “user agent” (from the English user agent ) or client making the request for transmission of data . A client can be a specific browser, when we try to open a web page , or the web crawlers ( webcrawlers or web spiders) that inspect them.

To them the server provides a structured response in a timely manner and equipped with a series of metadata, which establish the guidelines for the start, development and closure of the transmission of information. These are the “request methods”, that is, the commands that trigger the execution of certain resources, whose files reside on the server.

For example : When opening a specific web page, the informative exchange between our web browser and the server where the information resides will establish how the information should be transmitted, where the images are and in what order they will be displayed, etc. This exchange of request commands and response codes results in the representation on my computer of the same information originally contained on the server, which may be thousands of kilometers away.

  1. What is https?

The https is protected against the intervention of third parties.

For https means HyperText Transfer procotol Secure or Secure Protocol Transfer Hypertext , which is nothing more than the secure version of HTTP , ie a variant of the same protocol is based on creating an encrypted channel for transmission information, which makes it more appropriate for certain sensitive data (such as passwords and personal users).

Unlike the http, the https is protected against the intervention of third parties that can spy on the exchange of information or be done with data, through the use of “network layers” that allow only the server and the client to encrypt and decrypt the information sent through the prior exchange of network certificates, a kind of initial validation of trust to establish the transfer of information.

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