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Fails with wrong headers #1370

bb-migration opened this Issue Jun 23, 2015 · 8 comments


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5 participants

bb-migration commented Jun 23, 2015

Originally reported by: Daniel Frischhut (Bitbucket: daniel_frischhut, GitHub: Unknown)

We got a request with the following header-fields:

  'CONNECTION': 'close'
  'CACHE-CONTROL': 'no-cache'
  'ACCEPT': 'text/html,application/xhtml+xml,application/xml;q=0.9,*/*;q=0.8'
  'ACCEPT-CHARSET': 'ISO-8859-1,utf-8;q=0.7,*;q=0.7)'
  'USER-AGENT': 'Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64) AppleWebKit/537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/39.0.2171.95 Safari/537.36'
  'ACCEPT-LANGUAGE': 'en-us'
  'ACCEPT-ENCODING': 'gzip,deflate'

and cherrypy faild with follwing Traceback:

Traceback (most recent call last):
  File "/usr/local/lib/python2.7/dist-packages/cherrypy/", line 670, in respond
    response.body = self.handler()
  File "/usr/local/lib/python2.7/dist-packages/cherrypy/lib/", line 260, in __call__
    ct.params[\'charset\'] = self.find_acceptable_charset()
  File "/usr/local/lib/python2.7/dist-packages/cherrypy/lib/", line 146, in find_acceptable_charset
    encs = request.headers.elements(\'Accept-Charset\')
  File "/usr/local/lib/python2.7/dist-packages/cherrypy/lib/", line 456, in elements
    return header_elements(key, value)
  File "/usr/local/lib/python2.7/dist-packages/cherrypy/lib/", line 237, in header_elements
    return list(reversed(sorted(result)))
  File "/usr/local/lib/python2.7/dist-packages/cherrypy/lib/", line 217, in __lt__
    if self.qvalue == other.qvalue:
  File "/usr/local/lib/python2.7/dist-packages/cherrypy/lib/", line 207, in qvalue
    return float(val)
ValueError: invalid literal for float(): 0.7)

i edited the in line 207 and surrounded the return float(val) with a try - except and returned the default value.


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bb-migration commented Jun 23, 2015

Original comment by duong nt (Bitbucket: bugmenot4, GitHub: bugmenot4):

"q=0.7)" is invalid, you should fix the application


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bb-migration commented Jun 23, 2015

Original comment by Daniel Frischhut (Bitbucket: daniel_frischhut, GitHub: Unknown):

I know that this is invalid, I got this header in a productive environment, so I have no influence on the browsers out there. The application returns a 500 error right now, this may is wanted in some cases - in other cases the application should continue and just ignore the wrong header element.


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bb-migration commented Jul 19, 2015

Original comment by Sylvain Hellegouarch (Bitbucket: Lawouach, GitHub: Lawouach):

Hi Daniel,

I don't think it's a bug per-se and the server reacts accordingly by sending out a 500 error. Yet, from a user point of view, I can appreciate you'd want the encoding header to be more forgiving.

This is more of a feature than a bug however.


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webknjaz commented Sep 23, 2016

@jaraco I don't think there should be any forgiveness to malformed input. Do you?


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jaraco commented Oct 4, 2016

Malformed input should return a 40x error and not a 500 error. I'm less sure about whether the error should be silently suppressed or raise a 40x.


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skieffer commented Jan 18, 2018

This morning my website experienced the same issue, and due to the exact same malformed header:

ACCEPT-CHARSET: ISO-8859-1,utf-8;q=0.7,*;q=0.7)

What is this client out there in the wild that adds this erroneous close-parenthesis?

For what it's worth, I came here to make the same request, i.e. that we tolerate the header. I think when the user sees a 500 error it makes me look bad, and I imagine they are probably totally unaware that they are sending this malformed header. They will never fix the problem, and my website will continue to appear broken to them.


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seils commented Apr 20, 2018

@webknjaz, @jaraco, I'll take this one.

I'm considering a couple of approaches:

  • Catch the ValueError exception and return float(0) instead, essentially making the charset with the malformed weight value unusable.
  • Catch the ValueError and remove the charset with the malformed weight value from the list.

Any preference?


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webknjaz commented Apr 20, 2018

@seils @skieffer Malicious requests have to result in client errors http 400 (40x).
We should not tolerate this.
It this comes from client side, it means that they (1) don't use a normal browser, which normally implies that (2) it's a script/bot/exploit scanner.
So the only correct thing to do (RFC compliant) is to return 400.

@seils seils referenced this issue Apr 20, 2018


Fix 1370 #1707

webknjaz added a commit that referenced this issue May 28, 2018

Fixes #1370
Return  for requests with malformed Accept-Charset quality values.

@webknjaz webknjaz closed this in 38f199c May 28, 2018

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