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Need finer control of the bulk api

Question asked by Wendell Nichols on Oct 20, 2017

If I use, for example, 10 calls to put a module (update 10 records) I will incur 10 separate round trips to the server and considerable latency.  Each update gets back a success indication and the ID of the updated record.  However if I use the bulk api to do the same thing in one call I get back the entire modified record for each change made.  This is several K per record.
So while I've slightly reduced the latency of the entire operation I've transfered much more data.

Is there any way to reduce the size of the response for a bulk request?  I see that there is a request headers field available but no doc describing what I might put in them.