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Box V2 API Overview and FAQs

Box recently announcing the general availability of our v2 API (Application Programming Interface) and additional platform tools and services, including OAuth 2 support and new developer accounts. These new platform offerings enable developers, partners and customers to build powerful, scalable, content-driven applications on top of the Box platform, quickly and easily.

The v2 API, announced in April, is now out of beta and supported for developer use. It has been rebuilt from the ground up to be fully RESTful, with explicit use of HTTP methods, common naming standards and output formats (JSON), and clear, easily searchable documentation detailing every parameter that dramatically speeds development time.

The v2 API brings a host of new endpoints and features that allow developers, partners and customers to build powerful, scalable, content-driven apps quickly. They have been built to enable:

  • Simplicity: 
    • Search: The search API is intuitive to use, and leverages all the features of our website's search capabilities. Developers can bake search into their app, or use it behind the scenes to give their users different filtered views of their content.
    • Customizable responses: The v2 API lets developers specify what specific fields they need returned in their API responses. This makes for easier code parsing and doesn’t waste bandwidth.
    • Safe updates: Box uses HTTP if-Match and If-None-Match headers to provide you enterprise-grade transactional safety. Want to give your users access to edit their shared content without killing their co-worker's updates? Use Safe-updates, and it'll just happen. 
    • Error Codes: Every application runs into problems, and figuring out what went wrong shouldn't require a PhD. The v2 API returns detailed, industry standard, HTML error codes that late developers know what went wrong and get on with their development. 
    • Documentation:  The v2 API sports a beautifully redesigned documentation with great tutorial content, compatibility with in-browser search (Ctrl-F), and detailed info about every parameter, making it really easy for developers to work with the API.
  • Security:
    • OAuth2: OAuth2 is the new standard in web-app security. Box simplifies integrations by allowing developers to use standard OAuth2 libraries to get their users signed in with their Box account.
    • Users: The users endpoint lets app developers manage users, set their storage quotes, and set their device limits the way an admin would. This opens up a whole new breed of account-management applications targeted at the IT admins that use Box.
    • Apps: We now let you set up enterprise-specific settings, and manage the versioning of your application on users devices. You can also give your users info about what other apps they have installed on their Box account. 
  • Collaboration:
    • Comments: Apps built on the v2 API can now promote a whole new level of interactivity to their users by giving them access to commenting around files and folders. 
    • Collaborators: Also for the first time, the v2 API lets developers build apps where their users can invite other people to collaboration folders.
    • Events: The events endpoint lets developers create push notifications based on what users are doing with their content on Box. With the events endpoint, developers can monitor a single user’s events, or monitor a whole enterprises’ to build DLP, eDiscovery and SIEM apps for the cloud.
    • The v2 API has been rebuilt from the ground up as a RESTful API to let any kind of developer build on the Box platform. It’s not a closed platform with it’s own proprietary language; instead, it adheres to standard naming conventions across nouns and verbs, returns predictable error handling code, and sports solid documentation like many of the leading consumer APIs like Twilio and Stripe.
    • It will appeal to:
      • Custom app developers looking to add secure cloud content collaboration to their custom app’s workflow
      • Dev shops looking to leverage a scalable content platform for their commercial projects
      • Domain experts and ISVs looking to build the next killer app, but who don’t want to worry about building the content layer piece themselves

Who is the v2 API for?

  • The v2 API has been rebuilt from the ground up as a RESTful API to let any kind of developer build on the Box platform. It’s not a closed platform with it’s own proprietary language; instead, it adheres to standard naming conventions across nouns and verbs, returns predictable error handling code, and sports solid documentation like many of the leading consumer APIs like Twilio and Stripe.
  • It will appeal to:
    • Custom app developers looking to add secure cloud content collaboration to their custom app’s workflow
    • Dev shops looking to leverage a scalable content platform for their commercial projects
    • Domain experts and ISVs looking to build the next killer app, but who don’t want to worry about building the content layer piece themselves 

What happens with the v1 API? Will it be deprecated?

  • Yes, the v1 API will sunset on December 14, 2013, a full year after the v2 API launch
  • Developers will be notified via email, support documentation and regularly reminded in the months and weeks preceding final deprecation
  • A note on support: We will continue to support questions around our v1 API until December 14, 2013. However, beyond that date, all applications partners and customers who have built apps on the v1 API will need to refactor their apps to move to v2 API.

What is a developer account?

  • A developer account is an account that offers access to all of Box’s enterprise features, including advanced collaboration and the admin console, through both the Box web app and the API. It is a single-seat account with a 5GB limit on space (except any account created until January 18, 2013 will automatically receive 25GB of space).

Who is eligible for a developer account?

  • Anyone who uses the Box API

How do I get a developer account?

  • First, create a free account at box.com/signup, then obtain an API key by going to box.com/developers/services. Press the “Create New Application” button, and you will receive an API key. If you do so while logged in with a free account, your account will automatically be upgraded to a developer account.

What if my account is part of an enterprise?

  • All enterprise users automatically have access to all enterprise features through the API. If you wish to access the admin console through the Box web app, talk to your account admin or create a free account outside of your enterprise and obtain a developer account using the steps described above.

What if I have another account type (e.g. Personal with upgraded storage?)

  • The only accounts that will be automatically updated are free accounts. If you have a different non-enterprise account type that you would like updated, email API@box.com.

How much do developer accounts cost?

  • Nothing – developer accounts are free

What if I need more than one seat in my developer account for development and testing purposes?

  • Contact API@box.com with an explanation of why you need more seats, and the Box platform team will ensure your needs are met
  • Email API@box.com with any questions

Where can I get more information?


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