Getting Started

Before you get started using Live API Creator, review the videos and reading material. These materials give you a basic introduction to the Live API Creator components and features.

For more information about the videos, see Videos.

CA Live API Creator Components

Live API Creator accelerates and simplifies the creation, execution, and monitoring of database-oriented APIs. You can integrate, manage, and secure multiple databases into your API.

Live API Creator includes the following components:

  • Client applications, including:
    • API Creator. The Web console you use to specify your API, your logic (rules and JavaScript for events, formulas, and validations), database location, and your security settings. API Creator is an HTML5/JavaScript interface, so it runs in your browser. Your base tables are the REST resources, supporting GET, POST, PUT, and DELETE.

API Creator provides a point-and-click interface to define custom resources, providing an abstraction layer (for example, choose/rename attributes), and joins for a nested document model interface.

For more information about API Creator, see API Creator Tour.
    • Data Explorer. The self-contained service you use to test, prototype, and perform back-office data maintenance to your API. Data Explorer creates an executable and running HTML5/JavaScript multi-table user interface to the underlying data using the REST APIs for your base tables. It runs on desktop and tablet browsers.

For more information about Data Explorer, see Data Explorer.

  • API Server. A backend service and web app that stores the security settings in the admin database and enforces them in the course of processing REST retrieval/update requests. Typical clients are Web/Mobile Apps or other systems.
  • The admin database. Store your API definitions (resources, logic, security, filters, and Data Explorer settings) in the admin database (meta repository). The database is transparent for cloud/appliance users.
  • Identity management. In typical deployments, API Creator calls out to your existing security system (such as Microsoft Azure Active Directory (AD), Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP), and OAuth) for authentication, or pluggable authentication.

How to Get Started with Live API Creator

Use the following process to get started with Live API Creator, based on Live API Creator components:

1. Install an API Server

API Server operates as a WAR file. You deploy it into standard containers on-premises or in the cloud.

For more information about installing an API Server, see Install the Single-User Demonstration Package.

2. Log on to API Creator & Get an Overview

Log on to API Creator and get an overview using the Welcome Window in API Creator.

For more information about logging on to Live API Creator and creating your first API, see Create your API Project.

3. Create an API

API Server requires access to your database, whether it be stored in the cloud or within your firewall. Create an API by connecting to one of your own databases (or use the existing Northwind Derby database). You can create an API automatically or with control over data access/SQL.

For more information:

4. Test your REST API

You can test your REST API using:

  • The REST Lab. Manage and test data directly.

For more information about the REST Lab, see Test your API Using the REST Lab.

  • Data Explorer. Test, prototype, and perform back-office data maintenance to your API.

For more information about Data Explorer, see Data Explorer.

5. Secure Access to your APIs

You secure access to your APIs using:

  • Authentication. Also known as identity management, controls who can see and use your APIs. To facilitate development, you can use the built-in authentication provider.

For more information about authentication, see Authentication.

  • Role-based access security (RBAC). A role-based service that determines what a specific user can see and do with the API. You can secure individual resources and protect row and column on base table endpoints.
For more information:
  • About RBAC, including how to define roles, how to define globals for roles, how to reference globals, and how to define which roles have access to which specific tables, views, procedures, custom resources, and meta tables, see Role-Based Endpoint Access.
  • About declaring your security, see Declare your Security.

6. Add Reactive Logic

API Server enforces business policies and rules using the reactive logic engine. Your database design may require changes to support some features, such as sums and counts, or you can enforce transaction integrity using validation rules. You can extend API Creator using logic libraries.

For more information:

7. Analyze REST Services

You can see the results of REST calls in the log. The log captures metrics of the SQL queries and the performance of each rule execution.

For more information about the log, see View Logging Information.

More Information

For more information about the recommended Live API Creator training program, see Training Guide.