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Class: Squid Cache Object
Parse a binary Squid cache file
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 SquidCacheObject - Parse a Squid cache file to retrieve data for administative tasks


        The Squid cache proxy is a popular HTTP caching proxy for Linux based web servers,
        it is highly optimized and configurable and all in all a great application. Despite
        its popularity, certain internal aspects are a mystery and parts of the programmer
        documentation are outdated and incorrect. This class, SquidCacheObject, is designed
        to help administrators and programmers out by easing the burden of parsing cache
        files (known as cache objects in Squid land) themselves and having to read the
        source code so that they may get useful information from that cache file to carry
        out administrative tasks like selective purging (you cannot just delete the cache
        file from the file system) or general cache analysis.

        This class will create an object that represents the cache file, with all the meta
        data (and the actual file data if you choose) conveniently stored as public

    Please note

        The default permissions on the Squid cache directory is setup to be readable by the
        squid user only, this means you will need to set the uid of the script to that of
        the squid user (with apache suexec or similar modules or the functions provided by
        PHP) or change the file mode on the Squid cache directory.

    How to use it

        This is a short run through of how to use the class, for anything not covered
        here read the source code, it is heavily commented.

        1. First (and most obvious) we need to include the class into the script, that can
           be achieved using a line similar to the following:


        2. Now we instantiate (make) the object and pass the full path to the cache object
           you want to parse, remember the user the script runs as will need read
           permissions on the Squid cache file or Squid cache directory

           $CacheObject = new SquidCacheObject('/path/to/squid/cache/00/00/00/0000001');

        3. Now you can start accessing the various properties of the Squid cache object,
           remember not all the meta data types will be found so not all of the properties
           will be set for each and everything cache object, however, the general rule of
           thumb is that if you don't find what you need in a property it will be found
           in the SquidCacheObject::Headers property (you will need to parse these on your
           own by splitting the lines). The properties are (Remember I am just using the
           name $CacheObject as an example, for clarity):

           // This is the key for the URL

           // This is a unique SHA hash for the cache file

           // This is a unique MD5 hash for the cache object

           // This is the original URL of the content that this cache object holds

           // This is the human readable size of the cache file

           // This is the human readable creation date (dd/mm/yy) of the cache file

           // This is the human readable modified date (dd/mm/yy) of the cache file

           // This is the original HTTP headers from the cached data

           // This is the actual cached file data

    Optional Extras

        If you are handling a lot of Squid cache files in an administration tool you might want
        this tool to operate a little faster (it is pretty fast already) and be a little more
        resource weary to ensure stability and consitancy. To do this you can provide an extra
        argument when calling the SquidCacheObject, this will ensure that the cache headers
        and the actual file data that the cache file holds are not parsed, only the cache
        file's binary meta data will be parsed as well as some general infromation about the
        file. Please check the example below for a better understanding.

        // Include the SquidConfigObject class

        // Instantiate the SquidCacheObject class and provide an extra argument
        $CacheObject = new SquidCacheObject('/path/to/squid/cache/00/00/00/0000001', TRUE);

        // At this point the $CacheObject would not hold anything in the Data and Headers property

    How it works

        Although the Squid cache file format might change slightly depending on the version
        that you are using, it usually looks something like this (everything in brackets is
        the data type):

            meta-data-header  { 0x03, (unsigned int) meta-data-segment-length }
            meta-data-segment {

                meta-data-tuple { (byte) meta-data-type, (unsigned int) meta-data-length, (bytes) meta-data-value }
                meta-data-tuple { (byte) meta-data-type, (unsigned int) meta-data-length, (bytes) meta-data-value }
                meta-data-tuple { (byte) meta-data-type, (unsigned int) meta-data-length, (bytes) meta-data-value }
                0x00, 0x00
            HTTP headers...
            HTTP headers...

            Cache object data

        This means you need to effectively parse the file with 3 parsing regimes, one for the
        meta data header, one for the actual meta data and one for the HTTP headers and file
        data. The meta data can be the following types:

            Void         - This is an empty meta data item
            Key URL      - This is key of the URL
            MD5 URL      - This is a unique MD5 hash of the URL
            SHA URL      - This is a unique SHA hash of the URL
            URL          - This is the URL of the original file we cached
            STD          - Unknown to me at this stage
            Hit Metering - A value to define hit metering
            Valid        - A value to determine the contents validity
            End          - This meta data type will signify the end of the meta data segment

        There is no guarantee which meta data values will be found in which cache object, for
        instance you might not have a URL meta data type, but you might have the URL in the
        headers, you should test for your specific system configuration and work from that.

    About The Author

        My name is Warren Smith and if you have anything more worthwhile or interesting
        for me to be doing than making stuff like this, I am available.

        If you have any bug reports, improvements or cool ideas about this application
        feel free to drop me an email.

        I can be contacted at smythinc (at) gmail (dot) com


        PHP >= 4.3.0 (I have not tested on earlier versions but it could possibly work)
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