API:REST API

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The MediaWiki Core REST API lets you interact with MediaWiki by sending HTTP requests to unique URLs. You can use the API to build apps and scripts that search and display wiki pages, get media files, and explore page history.

Quickstart[edit]

# Search English Wikipedia for an article about Earth
$ curl https://en.wikipedia.org/w/rest.php/v1/search/page?q=earth&limit=1

Try it out

Data format[edit]

REST API endpoints return data in JSON or HTML format. See the API reference for the content type supported by each endpoint.

Methods[edit]

The API supports standard HTTP request methods.

GET Retrieve resource
HEAD Return HTTP headers for a GET request without response data
POST Create resource
PUT Update or create resource

URL structure[edit]

API endpoints share a consistent URL structure that includes the wiki's base URL, the wiki's install path, and the API version.

# URL structure
[project url]/[install path]/rest.php/v[version number]/

# Example URL: Get the history of the Main Page of English Wikipedia
https://en.wikipedia.org/w/rest.php/v1/page/Main_Page/history

Versioning[edit]

Designed to provide long-term stability for developers, the MediaWiki REST API is versioned using a global version number in the API path (for example: /v1/). Following the principles of semantic versioning, the version is incremented when an endpoint is changed in a backwards-incompatible way, such as removing a response property or adding a required parameter. Within a major version, the API may change in backwards-compatible ways, such as adding a response property or optional request parameter.

/v1/ (latest) Available in MediaWiki 1.35

Permissions and authorization[edit]

The REST API is designed to be used with the OAuth extension for user authentication and authorization. However, regardless of the authentication method, the API responds to the presence of a logged-in user and returns content appropriate to that user's permissions.

Accessing Wikimedia projects using the REST API[edit]

You can use the REST API to access Wikipedia, Wiktionary, and other Wikimedia projects in multiple languages. For a complete list of Wikimedia project URLs, see Meta-Wiki’s site matrix.

Request limit[edit]

There is no fixed limit on requests to the API, but your client may be blocked if you endanger the stability of a site. To stay within a safe request rate, wait for each request to finish before sending another request.

Client identification[edit]

Wikimedia sites require an HTTP User-Agent header for all API requests. This helps identify your app and ensures that system administrators can contact you if a problem arises. Clients making requests without a User-Agent header may be IP-blocked without notice.

The User-Agent header can include a user page on the local wiki, a user page on a related wiki using interwiki linking syntax, a URL for a relevant external website, or an email address.

# Preferred format for User-Agent headers
<client name>/<version> (<contact information>) <library/framework name>/<version>

If you are calling the API from browser-based JavaScript, you may not be able to influence the User-Agent header, depending on the browser. To work around this, use the Api-User-Agent header. See Meta-Wiki’s User-Agent policy for more information.

Authorization[edit]

To authorize your app to act on behalf of a user, follow the OAuth developer guide to register your app and make requests using OAuth tokens.

Licensing and trademarks[edit]

Wikimedia content is free to reuse within the terms specified by the applicable license. Licenses can differ between projects, so see the individual project for information about licenses and content reuse. For example, English Wikipedia’s text can be used under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike license, while media files on Wikimedia Commons are licensed individually as indicated on the file’s information page. For more information about licensing and trademark use, see Meta-Wiki’s developer app guidelines.

Limitations on Wikidata[edit]

While the REST API is available on Wikimedia projects, it is not fully supported by Wikidata. As of writing, some of the endpoints may return unexpected errors.

Extension endpoints[edit]

MediaWiki extensions can surface extension-specific API endpoints using the REST API interface. See the REST API extension interface docs to get started. For documentation for REST API endpoints provided by extensions, see the extension docs. The REST API extension interface is available in MediaWiki 1.34 via $wgEnableRestAPI and in MediaWiki 1.35 and later by default.

API comparison[edit]

API Availability URL base Example
MediaWiki-notext.svg MediaWiki REST API Included with MediaWiki 1.35+

Enabled on Wikimedia projects

/rest.php https://en.wikipedia.org/w/rest.php/v1/page/Earth
MediaWiki-notext.svg MediaWiki Action API Included with MediaWiki

Enabled on Wikimedia projects

/api.php https://en.wikipedia.org/w/api.php?action=query&prop=info&titles=Earth
Wikimedia-logo.svg Wikimedia REST API Not included with MediaWiki

Available for Wikimedia projects only

/api/rest https://en.wikipedia.org/api/rest_v1/page/title/Earth

About these docs[edit]

These docs are written manually based on the MediaWiki Core source code. Corrections and additions are welcome! To share a tutorial or app that uses the MediaWiki REST API, add a link to the REST API template.

See also[edit]