How do we know whether a service URI is available (related question)

Johannes Ernst at
Thu Aug 24 02:38:17 UTC 2006

It's reasonably straightforward to determine whether a service URI is  
available for things like server-to-server communication, e.g. by  
setting a timeout.

But what about the redirect operations? Let's say there are two  
service URIs for a given identifier, one with a higher priority than  
the other. A few days after having negotiating a shared secret,  
server 1 goes down. Upon an attempted authentication, the relying  
party will be blissfully unaware of the unavailability of that URL  
and redirect the user to a URL that doesn't work, leading to a 404 or  
500 or even "server not found" exception in the browser.

Is there something more intelligent that we can do? [I'm thinking of  
the very confused user who has no idea about redirects and SSO etc.  

What about a very efficient ping prior to redirect from the RP to the  
service URI?

Or do I see a problem where there isn't one?

Johannes Ernst
NetMesh Inc.

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