#hash-values #url #stable #secure #collection #cryptography #short


Simple types that provide secure and stable hash values for Urls

1 unstable release

0.1.0 Jan 3, 2024

#689 in Algorithms

Custom license

198 lines

Crate url-hash

This crate provides three types that represent hash values specifically for the Url types.

For some URL-centric structures such as RDF graphs and XML documents, there becomes a core requirement to manage hash-like operations to compare URL values or to detect the presence of a URL in a cache. While Rust's built-in hash implementation, and by extension collections such as HashMap and HashSet, may be used they provide a closed implementation that cannot be used in a language-portable, or persistent manner without effort. This

The purpose of the type UrlHash is to provide a stable value that represents a stable cryptographic hash of a single URL value that can be replicated across different platforms, and programming environments.


use url::Url;
use url_hash::UrlHash;

let url = Url::parse("https://doc.rust-lang.org/").unwrap();
let hash =  UrlHash::from(url);
println!("{}", hash);


This section attempts to describe the implementation in a language and platform neutral manner such that it may be replicated elsewhere.


The basis of the hash is the SHA-256 digest algorithm which is calculated over a partially-canonical URL.

  1. The scheme component of the URL is converted to lower-case.
  2. The host component of the URL is converted to lower-case.
  3. The host component has Unicode normalization via punycode replacement.
  4. The port component is removed if it is the default for the given scheme (80 for http, 443 for https, etc.).
  5. The path component of the URL has any relative components (specified with "." and "..") removed.
  6. An empty path component is replaced with "/".
  7. The path, query, and fragment components are URL-encoded.

The following table demonstrates some of the results of the rules listed above.

# Input Output
1 hTTpS://example.com/ https://example.com/
2 https://Example.COM/ https://example.com/
3 https://exâmple.com/ https://xn--exmple-xta.com/
3 https://example§.com/ https://xn--example-eja.com/
4 http://example.com:80/ http://example.com/
4 https://example.com:443/ https://example.com/
5 https://example.com/foo/../bar/./baz.jpg https://example.com/bar/baz.jpg
6 https://example.com https://example.com/
7 https://example.com/hello world https://example.com/hello%20world
7 https://example.com/?q=hello world https://example.com/?q=hello%20world
7 https://example.com/?q=hello#to world https://example.com/?q=hello#to%20world


The resulting SHA-256 is a 256 bit, or 32 byte value. This is stored as four 64-bit (8 byte) unsigned integer values which are converted from the digest bytes in little endian order. The following code demonstrates the creation of these values from the bytes representing the digest.

The following code demonstrates the creation of these four values from the digest bytes.

let bytes: [u8;32] = digest_bytes();

let value_1 = u64::from_le_bytes(bytes[0..8].try_into().unwrap());
let value_2 = u64::from_le_bytes(bytes[8..16].try_into().unwrap());
let value_3 = u64::from_le_bytes(bytes[16..24].try_into().unwrap());
let value_4 = u64::from_le_bytes(bytes[24..32].try_into().unwrap());

Short Forms

In some cases it is not necessary to store or pass around the entire UrlHash 32-byte value when a trade-off for hash collision over space may be safely made. To allow for these trade-offs each UrlHash instance may be converted into a 16-byte UrlShortHash which contains only the first two 64-bit unsigned values of the full hash, or an 8-byte UrlVeryShortHash which contains only the first 64-bit unsigned value of the full hash.

The following code demonstrates the creation of short (truncated) hashes as well as the prefix tests starts_with and starts_with_just.

let url = Url::parse("https://doc.rust-lang.org/").unwrap();
let hash =  UrlHash::from(url);

let short = hash.short();

let very_short = hash.very_short();

assert_eq!(very_short, hash.very_short());

Change History

Version 0.1.0

  • Initial release.


~300K SLoC