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Getting Started

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

Note: To get the CA Live API Creator 3.0 documentation, click here.

CA Live API Creator Components

Live API Creator accelerates and simplifies the creation, execution, and monitoring database-oriented APIs. The resultant APIs integrate, manage, and secure multiple databases.


Live API Creator includes the following components:
  • Client applications that you access from your browser:

    • API Creator. A Web Console you can use to specify your API, your logic (rules and JavaScript), database location, and your security settings. It is an HTML5/JavaScript interface, so it runs in your browser.
    For more information:
    • Data Explorer. Data Explorer is a self-contained service you can use for API testing, prototyping, and back-office data maintenance. Data Explorer creates a fully executable and running HTML5/JavaScript multi-table user interface to the underlying data using the REST API's for your base tables. It runs on desktop and tablet browsers.
  • 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. API Server operates as a WAR file. You deploy it into standard containers on-premises or in the cloud.
  • The Admin Database. The admin database (meta repository) stores your API definitions, logic, and security settings. It is transparent for cloud/appliance users. Access the admin database using Live API Creator's REST API. 
    • You can export admin contents into a file for maintenance in a source control system.  
    • You can script the creation of APIs into an API server using the Admin command-line interface (CLI).
For more information:
  • Identity Management. In typical deployments, API Creator calls out to your security system (Active Directory (AD), LDAP, OAuth) for authentication, or pluggable authentication. To facilitate development, you can use the default authentication provider.

Training Guide

API Creator is designed to get you up and running fast, yet provide the depth to deploy Enterprise-class APIs.  We recommend the following training program, provided by the web-based resources described below.

Level

Learnings

Resources

Certified By

BasicConnect database, build multi-table API, use API
  • Videos. You can also access these videos in Live API Creator, on the Welcome Window.
  • You have watched the videos.
  • You have completed the API Creator Tour ("Graduation cap" icons in Live API Creator that open the tour.)
IntermediateAPIs, Logic, Integration, Operations
  • API usage examples: 
FullUse All Design Patterns
 
Comfortable using Javascript for events, formulas, and validations
  • Build Logic Sample DB
AdvancedBuild new Rule Types
Build Security Provider
 

We anticipate most users with a moderate database background can achieve the following:
  • Intermediate within a day or so.
  • Full within several days.
  • Advanced requires experience with APIs, so will take a week or two.

Usage Overview

Live API Creator basic usage overview, based on the components:

1. Install an API Server

For more information about installing API Server, see Install Requirements.

2. Log on to Live API Creator

For more information about logging on to Live API Creator, see Log on to Live API Creator.

3. Get an Overview

User the API Creator Welcome Window to get an overview of Live API Creator.

4. Create an API

The API Server needs access to your database, whether it be stored in the cloud or within your firewall. Create an API, or API project, using the pre-supplied Northwind Derby database or connect to one of your own databases. The Northwind Derby database is part of the API Creator Tour and is an easy way to start.

For more information:

  • About the API Creator Tour and creating an API project using the pre-supplied Northwind Derby database, see Tour.
  • About connecting to one of your own databases, see Data Sources.

5. Explore your REST API

You can test your REST API in:
  • REST Lab. Manage and test data using the REST Lab. You can execute (GET/PUT/POST/DELETE) on any of your RESTful endpoints. API Docs is a quick reference guide and a complete Swagger documentation of all your API endpoints.

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

  • Data Explorer. A self-contained service that creates a fully executable and running HTML/JavaScript user interface to the underlying data using the REST API's for your base tables.

For more information about Data Explorer, see Data Explorer.

6. Secure Access to your APIs

Authentication (also known as Identity Management) controls who can see and use your APIs. Access Control is a role-based service that determines what a specific user can see and do with the api. You can secure individual resources and protect both row and column on base table endpoints.

7. Add Reactive Logic

One of the most important features of API Server is the Reactive Logic engine used to enforce business policies and rules.  Like a spreadsheet, rules are invoked (i.e. react) to changes in the data from PUT, POST, and DELETE on base tables. Your database design may require changes to support some of these new features (like sums and counts) or you can use the validations to enforce transaction integrity.  The entire engine supports extensible libraries in Java and JavaScript.

8. Analyze REST Services

The results of every REST call can be seen our browser based log display. We also capture the metrics of the SQL queries and the performance of each rule execution.