Brand New to Postman and API's in General

For purposes of this topic, it is safe to say I know NOTHING about API’s, let alone Postman. I have been provided what is defined as a “sample API postman collection along with a mini-doc”. The doc goes on to say

"the requests in this collection will allow you to authenticate against Indio (the vendor), as well as fetch clients, submissions, forms, and the responses associated with a given form".

Authentication - You must use the Login request to obtain a valid authentication token. For ease of use, once called, the authentication token will be stored in a Postman Collection Variable that all other requests in the collection use. You can set the email and password values (required by the Login request) as Postman Collection variables.

I know so little about API’s and Postman, that I am unsure as to where I navigate within Postman app to authenticate. Some very high level and basic advise would be much appreciated.

Thanks!

@bjmay Warm welcome to the Community :clap: Good to have you here!!

I could somehow feel what you are trying to say. Of course I started in the same place years back which you are in right now. Like the same, we were just provided with a API Documentation and were asked to build requests on our own and then to Test it :grinning:
Yes, earlier days were a bit hard, but everything is worth it when you finally achieve something.

Try to learn about API and API Testing a bit more before you start.

First of all I can say, Postman is really a user friendly tool and definitely you can learn at a faster pace. You have plenty of Valentin despa’s Youtube tutorial. Those are really good.

I suggest you to start with the Postman Student Expert (https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeXYUXbptNSve8dzquJzV6O3PtfWaSqx-Y1BjemYoM9m9168A/viewform)

Try to import this collection, and this a self explanatory collection, which will help you to learn at your own pace.

So after getting a basic understanding of what an API is, building requests, adding tests and collection runners, you are good to go with the Public API’s available and download them and start learning with them.

And once you start working on, please post your queries on the exact issue and we will be able to help you :slightly_smiling_face:

@bpricilla - I appreciate very much your willingness to provide a response.

I have watched a few of videos on Postman official YouTube page but even the beginner level videos seem to require a base level understanding, that I just don’t have. I am going into this basically blind.

How do I say this - I think I have actually gained a descent grasp on API’s (what they do, languages, etc.) but the actual architectural design/structure (what I as a complete novice would describe as the code), is where I am struggling. I feel like the darn “instructions” I have been provided, are in JSON themselves. I need a "this goes here, this means this, this is asking for user123’s date of birth, etc. lol

For Example - If I’m tracking correctly from the information provided to me by my software vendor who has the REST API, they are having me use an API to fetch authentication/authorization to access another API. Is this done in Postman? Beyond Postman being a “tool” what appears to be predominantly used in the larger process of web-based data transfer, I know nothing. Do I just “test” in Postman? What is “testing”? Do I create an environment to then create variables, do I create an API, etc. etc.

At the end of the day, I need to accomplish the following -

*Take my clients data that is already being hosted/stored in a 3rd party vendors platform. The data export/download file format is more/less PDF only (for reasons I won’t bore you with that are specific to my industry). With that said, this vendor does have a REST API. Within one of their “collections”/“variables” (again - not even sure I am using those terms accurately) you can go FETCH/POST/REQUEST (or something to that affect) your clients data to push back to me JSON files of the same data that is typically only available in PDF on what I will call the “user-side”.

  • Once I have retrieved the JSON files, I will then be POSTING them to a URL. This URL is controlled by a different software vendor I use (basically a CRM). I am not a big enough fish for them to actually integrate (I would define as “server talking to server”) and there are not a lot of “shared clients” between the two vendors. One conversation led to the next and I asked my contact at the CRM vendor, "what is the easiest, most accurate, and most efficient way for the CRM to digest incoming data and for this data to populate in the appropriate fields within the CRM?

"go get me a JSON.the handing over is easy. Then the system needs to know what to do with the file. We take caste of that.(and JSON is a format so we know how to read it).
So, the postman delivers an envelope - needs to know nothing about the contents. We then open it and read the letter :slight_smile:

I have done quite a bit of reading over the last few weeks and what I really want is to watch someone go through it. I need to see a visual representation of what one would do step by step if they were in my shoes, but unlike me, knew what they were actually doing. Or at the very least, walk me through authorizing/authenticating my credentials. I don’t even know if that is something done in Postman or no?

I would be happy to share some of the documentation I’ve been provided if that would interest you? If so, please connect with me at blake@mayriskconsultants.com

Thanks
Blake