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Can't change Content-Type server header response

     
5:01 pm on Dec 8, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I'm 302 redirecting requests for .axd files to be pulled from IIS server. Apache headers are properly showing 'Location' but the default 'Content-Type: text/html'. I have to change it to 'application/x-javascript' or 'application/javascript'. Redirection, however, takes about 2 seconds during which time some browsers continue to parse content as if they expect 'text/html' media type. Parsing would be done differently and more smoothly if browser knows 'application/javascript' type should be expected. I hope you get the idea.

I've tried using:

mod_mime
AddType application/javascript .axd

mod_headers
<FilesMatch "\.axd$">
Header set Content-Type "application/javascript"
</FilesMatch>

mod_rewrite [T] flag
[L,R=302,T=application/javascript] // it's Apache 1.3

Nothing works. Content-Type server header still is 'text/html'. What else should I try?

I'm about to give up and apply rewrite to process.php page where redirect and header change takes place by:
header("Location: http://www.example.com/");
header('Content-Type: application/javascript');
But this option would add at least a second to the load time.
10:45 pm on Dec 8, 2010 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member jdmorgan is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

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Not sure I understand this. Redirects don't use Content-Type headers, because a redirect response contains no response-body...

The content-type goes with the content -- the redirected-to 'page' or resource.

Also, I'm not sure why you are redirecting to the IIS server; this sounds like a job for a reverse-proxy, not a redirect.

Jim
8:55 pm on Dec 10, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Redirects don't use Content-Type headers, because a redirect response contains no response-body...

I'm sorry for confusion. To see response headers I use 'Live HTTP headers' add-on. This is what they show in response to 'GET /ExampleScript.axd?d=tyugyYhiiWsnObeDq3PMcVgoVc9' request:

HTTP/1.1 302 Found
Date: Fri, 10 Dec 2010 20:33:55 GMT
Server: Apache
Location: http://www.example.com/ExampleScript.axd?d=tyugyYhiiWsnObeDq3PMcVgoVc9
Keep-Alive: timeout=15, max=100
Connection: Keep-Alive
Transfer-Encoding: chunked
Content-Type: text/html; charset=iso-8859-1

I can't find a way to either remove 'Content-Type' header or change it to 'application/x-javascript'.
9:30 pm on Dec 10, 2010 (gmt 0)

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The resource returns "text/html" because the resource at the requested location is not a script, it's a redirect to another location.

That other location should return the correct header when, and only when, that other location is requested in a new and separate HTTP transaction.

The 302 redirect is dangerous. I am guessing that it should really be a 301 redirect.
9:44 pm on Dec 10, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Thank you, g1smd. The resource at the requested location is not a script but it is no 'text/html' either.

I know that the other location will return the correct header. My question was is there a way I can remove the 'Content-Type' header or change it to 'application/javascript'?
10:37 pm on Dec 10, 2010 (gmt 0)

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No. There is no need to do so. The correct response at the final URL is sufficent.

The redirect response could return a human-readable HTML page like:
<html><head><title>Redirect</title></head>
<body><p>This page has moved. It's now located at <a href="www.example.com/somepage">www.example.com/somepage</a></p></body></html>

In that case, the page IS text/html.
1:16 am on Dec 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

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But note that even though a redirect *could* return a content-body (as above), no modern browsers ever show these.

Jim
2:10 am on Dec 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Sure, the browser doesn't show it, but such pages occasionally turn up in search results and in searchengine cache, and in that case the human readable message and link is useful! I was just explaining why "text/html" is correct, and why anything else is less than useful.
2:52 pm on Dec 16, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I intended only to point out that there's no pressing need to return a content-body with a 30x response code, and that the content-type returned with a 30x response code is not very important (in that context).

It is the content-type of the redirected-to URL that matters.

Jim
2:01 pm on Dec 18, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Thank you g1smd and jdMorgan. I'm still struggling to understand what is going on. If I use Chrome Developer Tools on the Console tab there is a warning "Resource interpreted as script but transferred with MIME type text/html". Every time this warning is activated, the target server is again 302 redirecting (browser request for the .axd resource file), but this time to a 404 page.
 

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