http as a transport for rsync?

Robert Denton robert at
Thu May 3 13:48:42 GMT 2007

On May 3, 2007, at 8:58 AM, Bob Bagwill wrote:

> On Wed, 02 May 2007 12:33:38 -0400, Robert Denton  
> <robert at> wrote:
>> Given the increasing reliance on proxies and filtering devices, it is
>> harder and harder to rsync across the net.  Do you think we will ever
>> be able to use http as a transport for rsync?  For example, when will
>> I be able to do this:
>> rsync -arv http://rsync.domain.tld/webroot
>> It would seem that this is the logical next step for rsync and is the
>> one feature I most desparately need. What would be required for
>> this?  An apache mod?  Perhaps this email can be a catalyst for a
>> positive brainstorming session towards this end.
> IMHO, that doesn't make sense for rsync. That's what WebDAV is  
> for.  Of course,
> already exists, if that's  
> what you want.
> -- 
> Bob Bagwill

I have indeed considered http-tunnel but I see a few issues with it.  
One, it adds a layer of complexity to a rather standard and innocuous  
procedure: synchronizing. It would be nice if rsync could deal on its  
own with being behind proxies, etc (increasingly common). Another is  
that many of the clients I manage are not directly accessible by me,  
and I can issue them occasional commands, so something like 'yum -y  
install http-tunnel' would be quite resonable, but installing from a  
tarball is less so.  http-tunnel is not yumable at this point to my  
knowledge.  Further, http-tunnel works if you can maintain the tunnel  
but due to power outages, bandwidth outages, etc, maintaining the  
tunnel would be more challenging (although admittedly doable). r.

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