In server-driven content negotiation, or proactive content negotiation, the browser (or any other kind of user-agent) sends several HTTP headers along with the URL. These headers describe the preferred choice of the user.


The server uses them as hints and an internal algorithm chooses the best content to serve to the client. The algorithm is server-specific and not defined in the standard.

standard headers

The HTTP/1.1 standard defines list of the standard headers that start server-driven negotiation (Accept, Accept-Charset, Accept-Encoding, Accept-Language)