How to send a custom http status message in node / express?


My node.js app is modeled like the express/examples/mvc app.

In a controller action I want to spit out a HTTP 400 status with a custom http message. By default the http status message is "Bad Request":

HTTP/1.1 400 Bad Request

But I want to send

HTTP/1.1 400 Current password does not match

I tried various ways but none of them set the http status message to my custom message.

My current solution controller function looks like that:

exports.check = function( req, res) {
  if( req.param( 'val')!=='testme') {
    res.writeHead( 400, 'Current password does not match', {'content-type' : 'text/plain'});
    res.end( 'Current value does not match');

  // ...

Everything works fine but ... it seems not the the right way to do it.

Is there any better way to set the http status message using express ?

1/4/2013 9:24:11 AM

None of the existing answers accomplish what the OP originally asked for, which is to override the default Reason-Phrase (the text appearing immediately after the status code) sent by Express.

What you want is res.statusMessage. This is not part of Express, it's a property of the underlying http.Response object in Node.js 0.11+.

You can use it like this (tested in Express 4.x):

function(req, res) {
    res.statusMessage = "Current password does not match";

Then use curl to verify that it works:

$ curl -i -s http://localhost:3100/
HTTP/1.1 400 Current password does not match
X-Powered-By: Express
Date: Fri, 08 Apr 2016 19:04:35 GMT
Connection: keep-alive
Content-Length: 0
4/8/2016 7:18:24 PM

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