Restlet Updates DHC API Testing Tool, Adds Continuous Delivery Integrations

API tooling platform Restlet has launched a new version of DHC by Restlet, an API testing tool that functions from within a Web browser as a Chrome Web app. DHC helps API developers create and send API requests through a visual interface in order to better understand an API’s calls and responses. For API providers, DHC can be used to test their own APIs and ensure a quality end user experience.

DHC by Restlet screenshot

“Our ultimate goal at Restlet is to democratize Web APIs by offering a comprehensive and affordable API platform that individual developers and businesses of any size can use for all their API projects,” Jérôme Louvel, Chief Geek and Founder of Restlet told ProgrammableWeb.

“API testing is a critical aspect for both consumers and providers, from the discovery of an existing API to the design of a new API and the production monitoring. Before our DHC acquisition, the Restlet platform had limited capabilities on that front so when Filip Kolarik, the creator of DHC, proposed to join forces with us, it was a no-brainer. We were impressed by their level of expertise, the scale of adoption of DHC by API developers (which had already reached more than 200,000 Chrome installations) and the balance they found between power and simplicity.”

The new version of DHC by Restlet has now added additional capabilities including:

  • Creation of functional test scenarios: Developers can create a full unit test with conditional logic and query parameters to emulate real-life data responses and manipulation that may be made in a Web or mobile application when it is calling an API
  • Save API calls and test scenarios to the cloud: Restlet product users can now use their accounts to save their test scenarios from DHC by Restlet
  • Sharing and reuse of tests across team members: Testing of APIs is encouraged in a team environment where the API calls and responses, the unit tests, functional scenarios and all test results can be shared amongst a developer team needing to analyze and understand the API behavior
  • Integration with Maven and Jenkins: Plugins allow test scenarios to be included in continuos delivery and continuous integration workflows.

Louvel says enabling the tool from within the Chrome Web browser will make it easier for Restlet customers to incorporate the testing into their other product usage, for example, when creating APIs within Restlet’s APISpark:

As DHC is installed locally in Chrome browsers, it can invoke APIs running both in the local network or in the public internet. So, APIs created or just managed by APISpark can easily be tested from DHC, by copying and pasting the endpoint URL and user credentials between APISpark and DHC visual interfaces. We are planning to provide a direct way to open DHC directly from the APISpark UI, like we have for the Swagger UI that can be opened from within APISpark. Once invoked from DHC, simple API calls can become unit tests thanks to the assertion and expression features, and with today’s version release, API tests can now be saved in the cloud and shared with other team members.

By enabling integration with Continuous Integration and Continuous Discovery tools, DHC brings API testing into automated workflows aimed at leveraging current best practices for working in the globally distributed application architecture environments common today:

Development teams working in typical enterprises have to deliver applications in production at an increasing rate, leading to agile project methodologies, continuous integration and deployment, requiring automated quality assurance. As Web APIs take a central place in the technical stacks, for example to expose backend data and services to visual front-ends, they need to be tested automatically as well, with minimal change to existing development workflows and tooling. To facilitate this, DHC now supports the automated execution of API tests in Jenkins or Maven by providing a specific plugin.

DHC by Restlet includes a free plan, as well as tiered pricing levels with access to greater feature sets.

Mark Boyd is a ProgrammableWeb writer covering breaking news, API business strategies and models, open data, and smart cities.

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