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HTTP Server

Amnon Heiman edited this page Jan 28, 2018 · 3 revisions


Seastar comes with a basic HTTP server library, that supports basic HTTP operations.

Like all other components in seastar, the http is based on futures and when implementing a handler you should make sure not to block the shard you are using for a long time.

Building blocks

http server and controller

Both found in http/httpd.hh.

The httpd::http_server is seastar http server implementation. To work properly it should be distributed (i.e have an instance on each of the shards), to simplify using the http_server, use the http_server_control.

The httpd::http_server_control is a wrapper of the http server that makes it easier to create and control an http server and is used to start and stop a server.

The main method in http_server_control are start, stop, listen and set_routes.

To start an http server, define an httpd::http_server_control and call its start method with a name and then listen.

The name you are using will be used by the metric layer when reporting your server metrics.

Note that start returns a future.

httpd::http_server_control my_server;
my_server.start("my-http-server").then([&my_server] {
    return my_server.set_routes(...);
}).then([&my_server] {
    return my_server.listen(ipv4_addr{addess, port}).then([] {



Each http_server has a routes object that is used to assign handlers to paths.

You add routes to the routes object using either put or add.

routes put

Use put when you have an exact match (i.e. no path parameters)

routes add

Use add when you need a matching rule. matching rule contains path parameter.

Sometimes it is useful to mark that all the remaining path will be placed as a single parameter.

Example of setting routes

In the following example, my_http_server is an httpd::http_server_control and is set to return files from the local doc directory.

Note the difference between returning a specific file with an exact match /doc and the rest of the files, that will be mapped to a path variable named path.

The example uses two of a few predefined handlers file_handler and directory_handler.

    return my_http_server.set_routes([](routes& r) {
        r.put(GET, "/doc", new httpd::file_handler("doc/index.html"));
        r.add(GET, url("/doc").remainder("path"), new httpd::directory_handler("doc"));


All handlers inherit from handler_base and need to implement the handle method. There are predefined handlers one for file support that downloads specific file or directory. and the function handlers that makes it easy to register a lambda function as a handler.

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