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HTTP Server Request Handlers

This document describes common interfaces for HTTP server request handlers ("request handlers") and HTTP server middleware components ("middleware") that use HTTP messages as described by PSR-7 or subsequent replacement PSRs.

HTTP request handlers are a fundamental part of any web application. Server-side code receives a request message, processes it, and produces a response message. HTTP middleware is a way to move common request and response processing away from the application layer.

The interfaces described in this document are abstractions for request handlers and middleware.

Note: All references to "request handlers" and "middleware" are specific to server request processing.

The key words "MUST", "MUST NOT", "REQUIRED", "SHALL", "SHALL NOT", "SHOULD", "SHOULD NOT", "RECOMMENDED", "MAY", and "OPTIONAL" in this document are to be interpreted as described in RFC 2119.

References

1. Specification

1.1 Request Handlers

A request handler is an individual component that processes a request and produces a response, as defined by PSR-7.

A request handler MAY throw an exception if request conditions prevent it from producing a response. The type of exception is not defined.

Request handlers using this standard MUST implement the following interface:

  • Psr\Http\Server\RequestHandlerInterface

1.2 Middleware

A middleware component is an individual component participating, often together with other middleware components, in the processing of an incoming request and the creation of a resulting response, as defined by PSR-7.

A middleware component MAY create and return a response without delegating to a request handler, if sufficient conditions are met.

Middleware using this standard MUST implement the following interface:

  • Psr\Http\Server\MiddlewareInterface

1.3 Generating Responses

It is RECOMMENDED that any middleware or request handler that generates a response will either compose a prototype of a PSR-7 ResponseInterface or a factory capable of generating a ResponseInterface instance in order to prevent dependence on a specific HTTP message implementation.

1.4 Handling Exceptions

It is RECOMMENDED that any application using middleware includes a component that catches exceptions and converts them into responses. This middleware SHOULD be the first component executed and wrap all further processing to ensure that a response is always generated.

2. Interfaces

2.1 Psr\Http\Server\RequestHandlerInterface

The following interface MUST be implemented by request handlers.

namespace Psr\Http\Server;

use Psr\Http\Message\ResponseInterface;
use Psr\Http\Message\ServerRequestInterface;

/**
 * Handles a server request and produces a response.
 *
 * An HTTP request handler process an HTTP request in order to produce an
 * HTTP response.
 */
interface RequestHandlerInterface
{
    /**
     * Handles a request and produces a response.
     *
     * May call other collaborating code to generate the response.
     */
    public function handle(ServerRequestInterface $request): ResponseInterface;
}

2.2 Psr\Http\Server\MiddlewareInterface

The following interface MUST be implemented by compatible middleware components.

namespace Psr\Http\Server;

use Psr\Http\Message\ResponseInterface;
use Psr\Http\Message\ServerRequestInterface;

/**
 * Participant in processing a server request and response.
 *
 * An HTTP middleware component participates in processing an HTTP message:
 * by acting on the request, generating the response, or forwarding the
 * request to a subsequent middleware and possibly acting on its response.
 */
interface MiddlewareInterface
{
    /**
     * Process an incoming server request.
     *
     * Processes an incoming server request in order to produce a response.
     * If unable to produce the response itself, it may delegate to the provided
     * request handler to do so.
     */
    public function process(ServerRequestInterface $request, RequestHandlerInterface $handler): ResponseInterface;
}