Part-DB provides a REST API to programmatically access the data stored in the database. This allows external applications to interact with Part-DB, extend it or integrate it into other applications.

This feature is currently in beta. Please report any bugs you find. The API should not be considered stable yet and could change in future versions, without prior notice. Some features might be missing or not working yet. Also be aware, that there might be security issues in the API, which could allow attackers to access or edit data via the API, which they normally should be able to access. So currently you should only use the API with trusted users and trusted applications.

Part-DB uses API Platform to provide the API, which allows for easy creation of REST APIs with Symfony and gives you a lot of features out of the box. See the API Platform documentation for more details about the API Platform features and how to use them.

Enable the API

The API is available under the /api path, but not reachable without proper permissions. You have to give the users, which should be able to access the API the proper permissions (Miscellaneous -> API). Please note that there are two relevant permissions, the first one allows users to access the /api/ path at all and show the documentation, and the second one allows them to create API tokens which are needed for the authentication of external applications.


To use API endpoints, the external application has to authenticate itself, so that Part-DB knows which user is accessing the data and which permissions the application should have. Basically, this is done by creating an API token for a user and then passing it on every request with the Authorization header as bearer token, so you add a header Authorization: Bearer <your token>.

See Authentication chapter for more details.

API endpoints

The API is split into different endpoints, which are reachable under the /api/ path of your Part-DB instance ( e.g. https://your-part-db.local/api/). There are various endpoints for each entity type (like part, manufacturer, etc.), which allow you to read and write data, and some special endpoints like search or statistics.

For example, all API endpoints for managing categories are available under /api/categories/. Depending on the exact path and the HTTP method used, you can read, create, update or delete categories. For most entities, there are endpoints like this:

  • GET: /api/categories/ - List all categories in the database (with pagination of the results)
  • POST: /api/categories/ - Create a new category
  • GET: /api/categories/{id} - Get a specific category by its ID
  • DELETE: /api/categories/{id} - Delete a specific category by its ID
  • UPDATE: /api/categories/{id} - Update a specific category by its ID. Only the fields which are sent in the request are updated, all other fields are left unchanged. Be aware that you have to set the JSON Merge Patch content type header (Content-Type: application/merge-patch+json) for this to work.

A full (interactive) list of endpoints can be displayed when visiting the /api/ path in your browser, when you are logged in with a user, which is allowed to access the API. There is also a link to this page, on the user settings page in the API token section. This documentation also lists all available fields for each entity type and the allowed operations.


The API supports different formats for the request and response data, which you can control via the Accept and Content-Type headers. You should use JSON-LD as format, which is basically JSON with some additional metadata, which allows you to describe the data in a more structured way and also allows to link between different entities. You can achieve this by setting Accept: application/ld+json header to the API requests.

To get plain JSON without any metadata or links, use the Accept: application/json header.

Without an Accept header (e.g. when you call the endpoint in a browser), the API will return an HTML page with the documentation, so be sure to include the desired Accept header in your API requests. If you can not control the Accept header, you can add a .json or .jsonld suffix to the URL to enforce a JSON or JSON-LD response (e.g. /api/parts.jsonld).

OpenAPI schema

Part-DB provides a OpenAPI (formally Swagger) schema for the API under /api/docs.json (so https://your-part-db.local/api/docs.json). This schema is a machine-readable description of the API, which can be imported into software to test the API or even automatically generate client libraries for the API.

API generators which can generate a client library for the API from the schema are available for many programming languages, like OpenAPI Generator.

An JSONLD/Hydra version of the schema is also available under /api/docs.jsonld ( so https://your-part-db.local/api/docs.jsonld).

Interactive documentation

Part-DB provides an interactive documentation for the API, which is available under /api/docs ( so https://your-part-db.local/api/docs). You can pass your API token in the form on the top of the page, to authenticate yourself, and then you can try out the API directly in the browser. This is a great way to test the API and see how it works, without having to write any code.


By default, all list endpoints are paginated, which means only a certain number of results is returned per request. To get another page of the results, you have to use the page query parameter, which contains the page number you want to get (e.g. /api/categoues/?page=2). When using JSONLD, the links to the next page are also included in the hydra:view property of the response.

To change the size of the pages (the number of items in a single page) use the itemsPerPage query parameter ( e.g. /api/categoues/?itemsPerPage=50).

See API Platform docs for more infos.

Filtering results / Searching

When retrieving a list of entities, you can restrict the results by various filters. Almost all entities have a search filter, which allows you to only include entities, which (text) fields match the given search term: For example, if you only want to get parts, with the Name “BC547”, you can use /api/parts.jsonld?name=BC547. You can use % as a wildcard for multiple characters in the search term (Be sure to properly encode the search term, if you use special characters). For example, if you want to get all parts, whose name starts with “BC”, you can use /api/parts.jsonld?name=BC%25 (the %25 is the url encoded version of %).

There are other filters available for some entities, allowing you to search on other fields, or restricting the results by numeric values or dates. See the endpoint documentation for the available filters.

Filter by associated entities

To get all parts with a certain category, manufacturer, etc. you can use the category, manufacturer, etc. query parameters of the /api/parts endpoint. They are so-called entity filters and accept a comma-separated list of IDs of the entities you want to filter by. For example, if you want to get all parts with the category “Resistor” (Category ID 1) and “Capacitor” (Category ID 2), you can use /api/parts.jsonld?category=1,2.

Suffix an id with + to suffix, to include all direct children categories of the given category. Use the ++ suffix to include all children categories recursively. To get all parts with the category “Resistor” (Category ID 1) and all children categories of “Capacitor” (Category ID 2), you can use /api/parts.jsonld?category=1,2++.

See the endpoint documentation for the available entity filters.

Ordering results

When retrieving a list of entities, you can order the results by various fields using the order query parameter. For example, if you want to get all parts ordered by their name, you can use /api/parts/?order[name]=asc. You can use this parameter multiple times to order by multiple fields.

See the endpoint documentation for the available fields to order by.

Property filter

Sometimes you only want to get a subset of the properties of an entity, for example when you only need the name of a part, but not all the other properties. You can achieve this using the properties[] query parameter with the name of the field you want to get. You can use this parameter multiple times to get multiple fields. For example, if you only want to get the name and the description of a part, you can use /api/parts/123?properties[]=name&properties[]=description. It is also possible to use these filters on list endpoints (get collection), to only get a subset of the properties of all entities in the collection.

See API Platform docs for more info.

Change comment

Similar to the changes using Part-DB web interface, you can add a change comment to every change you make via the API, which will be visible in the log of the entity.

You can pass the text for this via the _comment query parameter (beware of the proper encoding). For example /api/parts/123?_comment=This%20is%20a%20change%20comment.

Creating attachments and parameters

To create attachments and parameters, use the POST endpoint. Internally there are different types of attachments and parameters, for each entity type, where the attachments or parameters are used (e.g. PartAttachment for parts, etc.). The type of the attachment or parameter is automatically determined by the element property of the request data if a IRI is passed. You can use the _type property to explicitly set the type of the attachment or parameter (the value must be the value of the @type property of the owning entity. e.g. Part for parts).

For example, to create an attachment on a part, you can use the following request:

POST /api/attachments

    "name": "front68",
    "attachment_type": "/api/attachment_types/1",
    "url": "https://invalid.invalid/test.url",
    "element": "/api/parts/123"

Uploading files to attachments

To upload files to the attachments you can use the special upload property of the attachment entity during write operations (POST, PUT, PATCH). Under data you can pass a base64 encoded string of the file content, and under filename the name of the file. Using the private property you can control if the file is the attachment should be stored privately or public.

For example, to upload a file to an attachment, you can use the following request:

PATCH /api/attachments/123

  "upload": {
    "data": "data:@file/octet-stream;base64,LS0gcGhwTXlB[...]",
    "filename": "test.csv",
    "private": false
  "name": "Rename attachment"

This also works for creating new attachments, by including the upload property in the request data along with the other properties.

Using the downloadUrl property of upload you can say Part-DB to upload the file specified at the URL set on the attachment.

PATCH /api/attachments/123

  "upload": {
    "downloadUrl": true
  "url": "https://host.invalid/myfile.pdf"