Lua HTTP async client using libcurl (supports multi requests in parallel)



lua-async-http rock, is a new lua rock written in C and based on libcurl. It allow us to make multiple http/https (with client certificate) calls in parallel (non-blocking) and wait for their responses.

In order to achieve such a behaviour, we've used the multi interface that libcurl has to offer.


The rock required the following system packages in order to compile:

  1. libcurl >= 7.34.0
  2. libcurl-devel >= 7.34.0

(TLS1.2 is supported since libcurl 7.34.0) QA env currently has libcurl 7.61.1-7.91.amzn1 installed by default.

Lua Usage

Important The following usage instructions are for the rock itself, and not for some lua based client.

Library require The library should be required by the caller module.

local async = require("lua_async_http")

Request Structure

The client has only one method avilable outside, the method name is: "request". The request method expect to get a bulked object of requests. For example:


Each request_object is a detailed request with the following optional/mandatory keys:

key value type mandatory
name The request key (no spaces!) string true
method GET | POST | PUT string true
post_params Post parameters, only if needed (for ex: a=true&b=val). post_params and data should not be configured at once! string false*
data The request body, in case of POST | PUT should transfer a body data. Example: {"data":true}. data and post_params should not be configured at once! string false*
url The request url string true
headers A collection of headers. Example: {{["Content-Type"] = "application/json"}, {["Custom-Header"] = "custom_value"}} collection true
cafile Path to CA PEM file string false
key Path to private key PEM file string false
certificate Path to public key PEM file string false
password The TLS private key password in case PEM has it string false
verify_peer Verify peer signature. (default: 1) bool(1|0) false
verify_host Verify host signature. (default: 0) bool(1|0) false
timeout The request timeout (in seconds. default= 8s) number false
debug Print to stdout for debugging bool(1|0) false

(* : cannot configure at the same time)

Requests example

local async = require("lua_async_http")
local res = async.request({
		name = "key_1",
		url = "",
		method = "POST",
		data = [[{"data": true}]],
		headers = {
			{["Content-Type"] =  "application/json"},
		timeout = 2.5
		name = "key_2",
		url = "",
		method = "GET",
		cafile = "/path/to/ca.pem",
		certificate = "/path/to/cert.pem",
		key = "/path/to/key.pem"

Take a look more request examples.


The response object is being returned based on the given request names. According the last request example, the response should return in the following structure:

	["key_1"] = {
		url = "",
		response_status = "200",
		response_headers = {
			["content_type"] = "application/json"
		response_body = "<HTML>...</HTML>",
		response_error = ""
	["key_2"] = {
		url = "",
		response_status = "0",
		response_headers = {},
		response_body = "",
		response_error = "Couldn't resolve host ''"

So in order to get the values, we need to access the res variable (in that example) by the desired key.

-- prints: <HTML>...</HTML>

Response Types

key type
url string
response_status integer
response_headers table
response_body string
response_error string

Things to take into considerations

  1. A bulked request error may rarely fail, therefore it must be pcalled:
    local async = require("lua_async_http")
    local ok, res = pcall(function()
    	return async.request({
    if ok then
    	-- now accessing res object should be safe
    	-- in case of a failure, res has the failure reason
    	print(string.format("failed due to: %s", res))
  2. When using POST method, you must use only 1 delivery option (data or post_params).
  3. The SSL filenames can have other file extension names, but they content must based on PEM.
  4. In case of an error in a certain request, we returning libcurl official error message through "response_error" key.
  5. In response_headers, we are lowercasing the key names by default.
International Business Machines
International Business Machines
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