Importing APIs Via Dev First Approach

WSO2 API Controller (apictl) allows you to create and deploy APIs without using WSO2 API Publisher Portal. You can use this feature to create an API from scratch or using an existing Swagger or Open API specification and then deploy it to the desired API Manager environment.


Before you begin...

  • Make sure that the WSO2 API Manager CTL Tool is downloaded and initialized, if not, follow the steps in Download and Initialize the CTL Tool.

  • Make sure you already have added an environment using the CTL tool for the API Manager environment you plan to import the API to.

    If not, follow the steps in Add an Environment.

Initialize an API Project

  1. Open a terminal window and navigate to the path you need to create the project.

  2. You can follow either of the following ways to generate the project.

    1. From Scratch

      • Command

        apictl init <Project Path>   
        apictl init <Project Path> --definition <API definition template file>  --force=<force create project>


        apictl init SampleAPI                
        apictl init SampleAPI --definition definition.yaml --force=true                

        The following is a sample API definition that can be used to generate an API Project.


          providerName: admin
          apiName: PizzaShackAPI
          version: 1.0.0
        uuid: febac429-0387-42d3-aec0-fb4ba9511260
        description: This is a simple API for Pizza Shack online pizza delivery store.
        type: HTTP
        context: /pizzashack/1.0.0
        contextTemplate: /pizzashack/{version}
         - pizza
        documents: []
        lastUpdated: Dec 21, 2020 11:44:29 AM
          name: Unlimited
          displayName: Unlimited
          description: Allows unlimited requests
          requestsPerMin: 2147483647
          requestCount: 2147483647
          unitTime: 0
          timeUnit: ms
          tierPlan: FREE
          stopOnQuotaReached: true
        availableSubscriptionLevelPolicies: []
        apiLevelPolicy: Unlimited
        uriTemplates: []
        apiHeaderChanged: false
        apiResourcePatternsChanged: false
        status: PUBLISHED
        technicalOwner: John Doe
        technicalOwnerEmail: [email protected]
        businessOwner: Jane Roe
        businessOwnerEmail: [email protected]
        visibility: public
        gatewayLabels: []
        endpointSecured: false
        endpointAuthDigest: false
        transports: http,https
        advertiseOnly: false
        apiOwner: admin
        subscriptionAvailability: all_tenants
          corsConfigurationEnabled: false
           - '*'
          accessControlAllowCredentials: false
           - authorization
           - Access-Control-Allow-Origin
           - Content-Type
           - SOAPAction
           - GET
           - PUT
           - POST
           - DELETE
           - PATCH
           - OPTIONS
        endpointConfig: '{"endpoint_type":"http","sandbox_endpoints":{"url":"https://localhost:9443/am/sample/pizzashack/v1/api/"},"production_endpoints":{"url":"https://localhost:9443/am/sample/pizzashack/v1/api/"}}'
        responseCache: Disabled
        cacheTimeout: 300
        implementation: ENDPOINT
        authorizationHeader: Authorization
        scopes: []
        isDefaultVersion: false
        isPublishedDefaultVersion: false
         - Production and Sandbox
        createdTime: "1608531265115"
        additionalProperties: {}
        monetizationProperties: {}
        isMonetizationEnabled: false
         - SANDBOX
         - PRODUCTION
        apiSecurity: oauth2,oauth_basic_auth_api_key_mandatory
        endpoints: []
        enableSchemaValidation: false
        accessControl: all
        rating: 0.0
        isLatest: true
      • Response

        Initializing a new WSO2 API Manager project in /home/user/work/SampleAPI
        Project initialized
        Open README file to learn more


        In this case, the project artifacts are generated according to a set of predefined templates. Therefore, after initializing the project, you need to go and edit the project artifacts manually.

    2. From OpenAPI/Swagger Specification
      You can use a Swagger2 and OpenAPI3 specification to generate an API. The file format should be YAML or JSON.

      • Command

        apictl init <Project Path> --oas <Path to API specification>
        apictl init <Project Path> --oas <Path to API specification> --definition <API definition template file> --force=<force create project>


        apictl init Petstore --oas petstore.yaml
        apictl init Petstore --oas
        apictl init Petstore --oas petstore.yaml --definition definition.yaml --force=true

      • Response

        Initializing a new WSO2 API Manager project in /home/user/work/PetstoreAPI
        Project initialized
        Open README file to learn more


        When you initialize an API project using an OpenAPI specification, the CTL Tool will automatically read the OpenAPI definition and populate a certain set of configs in the API definition file, api.yaml.



        • Optional :
          --definition or -d : Provide a YAML definition of API
          --oas : Provide an OpenAPI specification file/URL for the API
          --force or -f : To overwrite the directory and create project

    A project folder with the following default structure will be created in the given directory.

    ├── api_params.yaml
    ├── Docs
    │    └── FileContents
    ├── Image
    ├── Meta-information
    │    ├── api.yaml
    │    └── swagger.yaml
    └── Sequences
        ├── fault-sequence
        ├── in-sequence
        └── out-sequence

    Sub Directory/File Description
    api.yaml The specification of the created API.
    swagger.yaml The Swagger file that is generated when the API is created.
    api_params.yaml Contains environment-specific details.
        ├── fault-sequence
        ├── in-sequence
        └── out-sequence
    Contains the documents. To add a new document, add the document in the Docs/FileContents/directory.
      |── FileContents
    Contains the documents. To add a documentation, add them to the Docs/FileContents/directory.


    Changing the Default API Template

    When you create an API Project, APIs are generated using the default template specified in <USER_HOME>/.wso2apictl/default_api.yaml file. Following is the default template used to generate API Projects.

        providerName: admin
        version: 1.0.0
    type: HTTP
        - name: Unlimited
    status: CREATED
    visibility: public
    transports: http,https
    productionUrl: http://localhost:8080
    sandboxUrl: http://localhost:8081

    This file contains the same notation as the <API-Project>/Meta-information/api.yaml. Organization-specific common API related details can be put into this template file and shared across developers.

    To further finetune API creation, a custom API Definition file can be used. If you need to use a specific definition file when generating a certain API project, use the --definition or -d flag along with apictl init command. The custom definition file should be in YAML format only.

    Generate APIs with Dynamic Data

    When initializing an API Project, the CTL is capable of detecting environment variables in the default definition file or in the provided custom definition file and create the api.yaml with the dynamic data. A sample custom definition file is shown below.

        providerName: admin
        apiName: $APINAME
        version: $APIVERSION

    When executing the apictl init command, the CLI tool automatically injects the values to the API definition. If an environment variable is not set, the tool will fail and request a set of required environment variables on the system.

    In runtime, the CTL tool will automatically inject the environment variable values to the artifacts in the API project.


    To make this work you will need to set up required environment variables according to your OS. In a Linux/Unix environment, it can be done using

    export APINAME=MyAPI
    export APIVERSION=1.0.0

  3. Open the <API Project>/Meta-information/api.yaml file. You can edit the mandatory configurations listed below.

    Field Description
    apiName The name of API without spaces.
    context Context of the API in API Manager with a leading slash.
    productionUrl Production endpoint for API.
    sandboxUrl Sandbox endpoint for API.

    For more information about the configurations, see the api.yaml.


        providerName: admin
        apiName: "SampleAPI"
        version: 1.0.0
    type: HTTP
    context: "/samplecontext"
        - name: Unlimited
    status: PUBLISHED
    visibility: public
    transports: http,https
    productionUrl: http://localhost:8080
    sandboxUrl: http://localhost:8081

Import an API Project


Before you begin...

  • Make sure you have already created an environment to which you are planning to import the API. If not, follow steps in Add an Environment.

  • Make sure you have logged-in to the importing environment. If not, follow steps in Login to an Environment.


A user with admin role is allowed to import APIs. To create a custom user who can import APIs, refer Steps to Create a Custom User who can Perform API Controller Operations.

After editing the mandatory fields in the API Project, you can import the API to an environment using any of the following commands.

  • Command

    apictl import-api -f <path to API Project> -e <environment> -k
    apictl import-api --file <path to API Project> --environment <environment> -k
    apictl import-api --file <path to API Project> --environment <environment> --params=<environment params file> -k



    • Required :
      --file or -f : The file path of the API project to import.
      --environment or -e : Environment to which the API should be imported.
    • Optional :
      --preserve-provider : Preserve the existing provider of API after importing. The default value is true. --update : Update an existing API or create a new API in the importing environment.
      --params : Provide a API Manager environment params file (The default file is api_params.yaml.).
      For more information, see Configuring Environment Specific Parameters. --skipCleanup : Leave all temporary files created in the CTL during import process. The default value is false.


    apictl import-api -f ~/myapi -e production -k
    apictl import-api --file ~/myapi --environment production -k
    apictl import-api --file ~/myapi --environment production --params prod/custom_api_params.yaml -k 


    When using the --update flag with the import-api command, the CTL tool will check if the given API exists in the targeted environment. If the API exists, it will update the existing API. If not, it will create a new API in the imported environment.

  • Response

    Successfully imported API!