Customer Forum

Frequently-asked API Questions

Workbooks Support Posted: 2011-07-26 19:29

How do I get started with the API?

Take a look at the documentation for Automation which includes some simple examples like this one.

What Edition do I need for API access?

You can use the API with any edition of Workbooks however the Process Engine is not included in the Free edition. The Process Engine makes it easy to invoke and manage API scripts within the Workbooks environment. Free edition users who want to use API features need to host and run their code outside Workbooks.

If you are likely to rely on the Workbooks API we recommend you use a paid edition of Workbooks: the Process Engine makes everything much easier and you get access to our full support offering.

What Workbooks APIs are available?

Most Workbooks objects have published APIs, affording Create, Read, Update and Delete ("CRUD") access to their data depending on the underlying object's security model. Within the Workbooks Desktop navigate to Configuration > Automation > API Reference. This shows every record type available through the API plus their fields and associations to other record types. All of the information available visually here is also available via the metadata API. The set of APIs typically extends with each release. 

Are there any examples I can learn from?

Lots. Take a look in the Script Library or on our area on github

Do your APIs change?

Features are added to Workbooks with every release, and APIs are added to support programmatic access to those features. We keep Workbooks APIs backwards-compatible with prior releases. Amongst many automated tests, each published API example is autotested every time we commit a change to the Workbooks source tree. 

Who's using the APIs?

We use the APIs extensively. They underpin the Workbooks Outlook Connector and the Workbooks Mobile client.  Partners use them in a variety of ways, for example Sagelink.  Customers have integrated a variety of systems with Workbooks whether for data import/export, or to use Workbooks as the back-end for a web site or portal. 

How do I keep software fast when using the API?

Each API supports bulk operations so you can create, read, update or delete up to a hundred records in a single web request. 

What's best practice for writing software with the Workbooks API?

As with all software, start with a clear set of requirements, keep it well structured and test it as thoroughly as you can. Ensure you keep track of its history by using a source control system. Most importantly: make it supportable by ensuring you have great logging, robust decoding of results and check every response's return code in case of errors. If you use the built-in Process Engine a lot of the infrastructure to make this easy is provided for you: extensive logging and error detection.

How do I test my API integration?

Most Workbooks accounts allow you to create multiple databases.  You can create 'demo' databases containing demonstration data or you can create a database which contains a copy of your data.  The API login process allows your API client to select which database to use: use a test database prior to releasing your API integration.

Multiple databases are not currently available with the Free Edition but they are available when you enrol for a (free) Trial account.