HTTP is a method for encoding and transporting data between a client and a server. It is a request/response protocol: clients issue requests and servers issue responses with relevant content and completion status info about the request. HTTP is self-contained, allowing requests and responses to flow through many intermediate routers and servers that perform load balancing, caching, encryption, and compression.
A basic HTTP request consists of a verb (method) and a resource (endpoint). Below are common HTTP verbs:
|GET||Reads a resource||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|POST||Creates a resource or trigger a process that handles data||No||No||Yes if response contains freshness info|
|PUT||Creates or replace a resource||Yes||No||No|
|PATCH||Partially updates a resource||No||No||Yes if response contains freshness info|
|DELETE||Deletes a resource||Yes||No||No|
*Can be called many times without different outcomes.
HTTP is an application layer protocol relying on lower-level protocols such as TCP and UDP.
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