file:/ vs file://<host>/ vs file:///

Dave Cridland dave at
Fri Nov 5 12:42:36 EET 2004

On Fri Nov  5 00:01:55 2004, Glenn McGrath wrote:
> Why dont you stand up and do what you know is right rather than what
> your told is right.
Ah, indeed. Personally, I feel that XML would be better 
case-insensitive - should I write my XML files case insensitively, or 
should I follow existing specifications? According to you, I should 
do my own thing, because I know I'm right. Common sense suggests that 
invention and arbitrary alteration of specifications is a 
stupendously dumb thing to do, however, since it breaks 

> Your told by RFC1738 that file:// is correct, but you know that 
> file:/
> is a better long term solution. The very least you could do is not 
> make
> the problem worse.
What problem?

a) If software generates a file scheme URI, then it should be correct 
according to the standard. Your file:/etc/foo syntax provides no 
semantic not catered for by file://localhost/etc/foo, thus it is 
utterly pointless.

b) If a user enters a file scheme URI at a dialog box, then the 
application may choose to correct any syntactic error, up to and 
including addition of a missing scheme. That's not about the exchange 
of URIs, that's about user input.

c) If a user enters a file scheme into the source of an XML or HTML 
document, then the user is responsible for ensuring that it a valid 
one. (Note: this is an identical problem with http scheme URIs - <a 
href=''>Clicky Stuff</a> doesn't link to Google.)

I move that there exists no problem, and therefore there is no 
solution possible.


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