#TechNews: What is Hyper Text Transfer Protocol (HTTP)?

Hyper Text Transfer Protocol is a term which everyone comes across whenever you are trying to surf the Internet. http:// is the first code on every link when your are searching something on your web browser.

By Cisco Eng. Shingie Lev Muringi 

So what is HTTP and why is it such an important code generated by the World-Wide-Web platforms whenever one is surfing the Internet?

When a web address or uniform resource locator (URL) is typed into a web browser, the web browser establishes a connection to the web service running on the server using the HTTP protocol. URLs and Uniform Resource Identifier (URIs) are the names most people associate with web addresses.

The http://www.cisco.com/index.html URL is an example of a URL that refers to a specific resource; a web page named index.html on a server identified as cisco.com while http://www identifies that the search is being done the Internet (world-wide-web).

Web browsers are the type of client application a computer uses to connect to the World Wide Web and access resources stored on a web server. As with most server processes, the web server runs as a background service and makes different types of files available.

To access the content, web clients make connections to the server and request the desired resources. The server replies with the resources and, upon receipt, the browser interprets the data and presents it to the user.

Browsers can interpret and present many data types (such as plain text or Hypertext Markup Language, the language in which web pages are constructed). Other types of data, however, may require another service or program, typically referred to as plug-ins or add-ons. To help the browser determine what type of file it is receiving, the server specifies what kind of data the file contains.

HTTP is used across the World Wide Web for data transfer and is one of the most used application protocols today. It was originally developed to simply publish and retrieve HTML pages; however the flexibility of HTTP has made it a vital application within distributed, collaborative information systems.

The battle for relevance continues…follow Shingie Levison Muringi our Technology Research Specialist and Sub Editor on Twitter @ShingieMuringi1, Email [email protected] or direct Cell: 0775 380 652 for all the latest trending technological issues in and outside Zimbabwe.


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