Module Webs_fs

File system responses.

See this section of the HTTP service howto. See also Webs_gateway.send_file.

To use send_file you need a connector that supports Webs_unix.Fd.Writer body writers. For example Webs_http11_gateway and Webs_cgi and do.


type etagger = Webs.Http.Path.fpath -> Unix.file_descr -> Unix.stats -> (Webs.Http.Etag.t, string) Stdlib.result

The type for functions for determining file etags. The function is given the filepath, a file descriptor open on it and its file stats record.

val default_etagger : etagger

default_etagger implements the nginx etag scheme. This is a strong etag with the file stat's mtime and size written in lowercase hexadecimal as hex(mtime)-hex(size).

Directory responses

type dir_response = etagger:etagger -> media_types:Webs.Media_type.file_ext_map option -> Webs.Http.Request.t -> Webs.Http.Path.fpath -> Unix.file_descr -> Unix.stats -> (Webs.Http.Response.t, Webs.Http.Response.t) Stdlib.result

The type for functions for directory responses.

Functions of this signature are invoked by send_file when they hit directories. They are given an etagger, media_types, the request, the file path to the (existing) directory, a file descriptor open on it and its file stats records.

The function should follow up with the response for the directory. It is its duty to eventually close the given file descriptor whatever happens. If the response ends up being a file, etagger and media_types should be used to determine its etag and media type.

val dir_404 : dir_response

dir_404 is a directory response that always returns Error r with r an empty Webs.Http.Status.not_found_404 response.

val dir_index_file : string -> (dir_response, string) Stdlib.result

dir_index_file filename serves the file named filename in the directory via send_file. Returns an Error _ if file contains a directory separator or is "..". If you know that statically use Result.ok.

File sending

val send_file : ?dir_response:dir_response -> ?etagger:etagger -> ?media_types:Webs.Media_type.file_ext_map -> Webs.Http.Request.t -> Webs.Http.Path.fpath -> (Webs.Http.Response.t, Webs.Http.Response.t) Stdlib.result

send_file request file responds to request request by sending the file file. Use Webs.Http.Request.to_absolute_filepath to determine a file from request safely.

The long details are as follows.

The function first checks if request is a GET or HEAD request. If not it returns Error r with r an empty Webs.Http.Status.method_not_allowed_405 response.

It then opens file for reading and stat(2)s it:

  1. If file is a directory, continues with dir_response (defaults to dir_404).
  2. If file is a file, an etag etag is computed for file using etagger (defaults to default_etagger).

Equipped with the etag the function proceeds to perform, in order:

  1. Evaluate request's Webs.Http.Headers.if_match header condition (if any) with tag etag. If that is false, return Error r with r an empty Webs.Http.Status.precondition_failed_412 response.
  2. Evaluate request's Webs.Http.Headers.if_none_match header condition (if any) with tag etag. If that is false, returns Ok r with r an empty Webs.Http.Status.not_modified_304 response.
  3. If request is a HEAD request, returns with Ok r with r an empty Webs.Http.Status.ok_200 response.
  4. If request has a Webs.Http.Headers.range header, evaluate request's Webs.Http.Headers.if_range header (if any) with tag t. If that is false or if there is no Webs.Http.Headers.if_range, the range request is turned into a full response (see next point). Otherwise the first satisfiable range is served in the body of Ok r with r a Webs.Http.Status.partial_content_206 response. Or if there is no satisfiable range, Error r is returned with r an empty Webs.Http.Status.range_not_satisfiable_416 response.
  5. If request has no Webs.Http.Headers.range header, responds with Ok r with r a Webs.Http.Status.ok_200 response with file's content as a body.

The content type of the response body is determined using Webs.Media_type.of_filepath with mime_types (defaults to Webs.Media_type.default_file_ext_map) and file. The body is sent using a Webs_unix.Fd.Writer custom body content with the Webs_unix.sendfile system call or a fallback if not available.

In addition to the errors mentioned above, the function also returns Error r with r:

Caching. The responses do not add caching information. You should add them yourself on Ok _ responses, for example as follows:

let send_asset ~strip ~file_root request =
  let* file = Http.Request.to_absolute_filepath ~strip ~file_root request in
  let* response = Webs_fs.send_file request file in
  let forever = "public, max-age=31536000, immutable" in
  let hs = Http.Headers.(def cache_control) forever Http.Headers.empty in
  Http.Response.override_headers ~by:hs response

Responses however include an Webs.Http.Headers.last_modified header derived from the file modification time. It seems without this header, one does not hit the browser memory cache in blink based browsers (not sure if this is still the case in 2023).

Limitations. For range requests a single range is responded with; there is no multipart/byteranges support for the time being.