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Vee Satayamas
Vee Satayamas

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An incomplete WebSocket client based on only socket, ssl, and uuid in Python

A few days ago, I couldn't get a WebSocket library working with another library on Python 3.10. So to avoid those dependencies, I implemented my WebSocket client on a low-level socket API. I implemented one in Common Lisp first. Then I translated it to Python. My WebSocket client is very far away from being completed, but at least it can run.

The first part is import. I imported only three things that are socket, ssl, and uuid.

import socket
import ssl
import uuid
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The second part is based on HTTP headers for telling the server to switch to the WebSocket mode.

def upgrade(s, conn_info):
    with s.makefile(mode = 'rw', encoding = "ISO-8859-1") as f:
        f.write(f'GET {conn_info["path"]} HTTP/1.1\r\n')
        f.write(f'Host: {conn_info["host"]}\r\n')
        f.write("Connection: Upgrade\r\n")
        f.write("Upgrade: websocket\r\n")
        f.write(f'Sec-Websocket-Key: {str(uuid.uuid1())}\r\n')
        f.write("Sec-WebSocket-Version: 13\r\n")

        # reading response
        for line in f:
            if line == "\n":
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The third part is reading a content length. I assume that the server keep sending text contents. In read_payload_len(), s.recv(1) read a byte from the socket s. & 0x7F is for masking only 7 bits. If length is 127, the length is in the next 4 bytes instead. If length is 126, the length is in the next 2 bytes. Otherwise the function just returns the length.

def read_payload_len(s):
    match s.recv(1)[0] & 0x7F:
        case 127:
            return read_extra_len(s, 4)
        case 126:
            return read_extra_len(s, 2)
        case l:
            return l
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The read_extra_len reads bytes and turn them to integer.

def read_extra_len(s, num_of_bytes):
    buf = s.recv(num_of_bytes)
    len = 0
    for i in range(num_of_bytes):
        len += buf[i] << (8 * (num_of_bytes - i - 1))
    return len
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In the fourth part, we read a web socket frame. The program determine a frame type from opcode, which in the last 4 bits of the header. I should implement PING-PONG part but I didn't. According to RFC6455, which I forgot to mention before, opcode == 0x1 means the frame is a text frame. So the program reads payload length and reads the payload.

def read_frame(s):
    header0 = s.recv(1)[0]
    opcode = header0 & 0x0F
    match opcode:
        case 0x1:
            payload_len = read_payload_len(s)
        case 0x9:
        case 0xA:
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The last part is for opening connections and SSL/TLS wrapper. The function created a socket and wrapped it with TLS/SSL wrapper. The sending upgrade message to ask the server to switch to Websocket mode and the keep reading frames.

def connect(conn_info):
    ctx = ssl.create_default_context()
    with socket.create_connection((conn_info["host"], conn_info["port"])) as s:
        with ctx.wrap_socket(s, server_hostname = conn_info["host"]) as ss:
            upgrade(ss, conn_info)
            while True:
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In the final part, I cannot find any public Websocket endpoint besides ones from cryptocurrency exchanges. So I put Bitkub API.

connect({"host": "",
         "port": 443,
         "path": "/websocket-api/"})
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And it works, but if you are unlucky, you will get PING instead.

> python3.10 
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