back to article RIP SPDY, we hardly knew ye: Google to retire next-gen web protocol

Google has decided to mothball its home-grown SPDY internet application-layer protocol in future versions of its Chrome browser, in favor of the Internet Engineering Taskforce's HTTP/2 spec. "Chrome has supported SPDY since Chrome 6, but since most of the benefits are present in HTTP/2, it's time to say goodbye," Google …

  1. Keef

    One day maybe?

    The picture will take up more screen real estate than the article, I think we're nearly there...

    1. Cliff

      Re: One day maybe?

      I fuckin' love scrollin', me!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: One day maybe?

        >I fuckin' love scrollin', me!

        My trusty steed is a mouse, a Logitech mouse with one of those free-wheelin' 'Hyperscroll' wheels.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: One day maybe?

      .article_img { display: none; }

    3. Michael Habel Silver badge

      Re: One day maybe?

      The Picture

      What Picture?! >2015, and still not using adbolck Software...

      1. Cliff

        Re: One day maybe?

        One day, heavy images atop the actual information part of what you're trying to read will look exactly like scrolling marquee text and comet cursors do to is now.

    4. phil dude

      Re: One day maybe?

      it's called a comic.


  2. Aslan

    Hooray for standards.

  3. Charlie Clark Silver badge

    Google's decision to kill SPDY in Chrome will go unnoticed by most users.

    Which is as it should be

    Both the web browser and the server must support the protocol for it to have any effect, and few web servers enabled it – Google being a notable exception, naturally.

    Quite a lot of high-traffic sites use SPDY and credit to Google for doing enough work to get a serious debate about HTTP2 which hadn't been going anywhere.

    Google's work on open source and within standards bodies is generally pretty good and in stark contrast to Apple or how Microsoft used to work.

    1. Crazy Operations Guy

      "Google's work on open source .... in stark contrast to Apple or how Microsoft used to work."

      I can't agree with you 100% on that...

      Microsoft is the largest corporate contributor to the Linux Kernel (To increase compatibility with Hyper-V and other Microsoft products) and Apple sends quite a few code changes up-stream to NetBSD (OS X's underpinnings are based on NetBSD).

      1. Nextweek

        Re: "Google's work on open source .... in stark contrast to Apple or how Microsoft used to work."

        >> Microsoft is the largest corporate contributor to the Linux Kernel

        Microsoft do not contribute the most to the Linux kernel, that is old news:

  4. Cliff


    Did anyone ever use it? Google say they support it but even from chrome it defaults to http:// Do the dynamic script bits use it or something? Or if it a secret, behind the scenes thing where the connection claims to be http(s), but isn't?

    1. David Dawson

      Re: spdy://whatever

      It's not a replacement for HTTP per se. It's a transport that sits underneath HTTP. So HTTP 1.1 traffic will still flow, but over a SPDY link rather than vanilla TCP.

      In this way, it can understand the HTTP traffic flowing over it and enhance it. For example, getting the multi connnections over a single TCP socket, which HTTP totally messed up with the aborted pipelining feature (all browsers switch that off, because it's broken).

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: spdy://whatever

      Yeah, I use spdy on my own VPS, hosting Tiny-Tiny RSS. It was merely a matter of installing an extra apache package, and configuring apache to load it.

      On very simple tests, I think it nearly halved page load time. Https became much, much faster than Http.

      I'm just hoping the replacement is as simple to install and use.

    3. petur

      Re: spdy://whatever

      @Cliff: There are plugins for FF and Chrome that show a little icon detailing SPDY or HTTP/2 and you'd be amazed at the number of sites already using one of them.

      1. Cliff

        Re: spdy://whatever

        Thanks guys, looks like I was sidetracked by thinking the protocol bit of the URL referred to the protocol! Just goes to show the 'http://' bit is a pattern for humans, not machines, if the machines will broker their own protocol deals and not tell me!

        1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

          Re: spdy://whatever

          the protocol bit of the URL

          There is no "protocol bit of the URL". There's a scheme portion of the URL1, but it doesn't necessarily identify the concrete protocol used on the wire. It names the abstract protocol - the language, semantics, and requirements - that the user agent and server use for their control and data flows. That can become something else under the covers.

          the 'http://' bit is a pattern for humans, not machines

          That's not really correct either. It's for both. The user agent uses it to decide what kinds of request messages it will send to the server, and how to interpret the server's responses.

          This happens with standard HTTP/1.1 as well. A user agent talking to a server for the first time doesn't know if that server supports HTTP/1.1, so it has to send a request that's compatible with HTTP/1.0 as well. Once each side knows the peer supports HTTP/1.1, they can use message formats that aren't supported in 1.0, such as the chunked transfer encoding for message bodies.

          1Some would say "of the URI", but consensus on the W3C and IETF URI mailing lists seems to be moving toward dropping that acronym.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Or block web bugs

    I read the SPDY spec a long time ago. It seemed to exist to make Google's ads and web bugs faster by reducing the cost of extremely large HTTP headers. Anyone who wants fast loading web pages has already fixed that with a plugin to block ads and tracking cookies, leaving very little for SPDY to do except add complexity. Some of the amazing performance claims out in the wild were actually a result of it bypassing broken keep-alive configurations.

    1. petur

      Re: Or block web bugs

      AC, your ignorance suits you, I'd post such a comment as AC too...

      Read up on the topic, for example, here:

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Or block web bugs

        I think you meant to post this link:

        If you're implementing something that looks like TCP over TCP, you've probably jumped the shark at some point.

        1. petur

          Re: Or block web bugs

          No, I specifically posted that link, as it explains things in a way even an AC should understand :P

  6. Nigel 9

    I just want Opera back :(

  7. Fred Fallacy

    Excellent misuse of sour grapes


  8. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

    Some key features [of HTTP/2] such as multiplexing, header compression, prioritization and protocol negotiation evolved from work done in an earlier open, but non-standard protocol named SPDY.

    Yes, and in any number of proprietary protocols before that. None of those ideas are new.

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