Apigee Tutorial

Nowadays, every business enterprise thinks about building their Application Programming Interface (API) protocol to have a better interaction between multiple systems. With the help Apigee tool, it's very easy to create, manage and create APIs. In today's tech market API interfaces are creating a lot of demand over web service and mobile applications. This Apigee Tutorial helps you to master the Apigee tool along with its advanced features.

Introduction to Apigee

Apigee is an API management and predictive analytics software tool developed by Sonoa Corporation as Sonoa systems in 2004. Now Apigee is maintained by Google corporations to help them in building cloud-based interfaces. This Apigee helps companies to secure, design, and scale their application programming Interfaces. I will explain further Apigee components in detail.

What is Apigee Edge?

Apigee Edge is a platform for managing and developing application programming interfaces (APIs). This platform uses the proxy layer and edge to abstract the protocol and also helps for your backend services APIs. Apigee Edge platform offers security, rate limiting, data quotas, and analytics.

The above diagram gives the quick view of Apigee edge, now most of the companies use this Apigee Edge as HTTP for their backend services used in their web services or mobile service development applications. This tool makes it easy for application developers to consume the services and enables them to change the backend service implementations without affecting already existing APIs. And also supports the developers to take advantage of the data analytics, monetization process, portal development, and also other advanced features in Apigee Edge.

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Why Apigee?

Apigee is an important source for developers to utilize API skills and development tools. There are lots of useful advantages of using these Apigee interfaces over other interface protocols.

  • API management is nothing but tools and practices, which enable any organization to manage and monitor the application developments. 
  • This API management controls how the gateway passes calls top the back-end service and then hands-off the response back to the invoker’s site.
  • Most large companies have built out API for their customers and internal use.
  • Security-> this controls the access to your services to prevent it from any unauthorized access.
  • Compatibility-> this makes your services work across different platforms and devices.
  • Measurability-> Apigee edge tool helps you to monitor your services.
  • Monetization-> this helps you to track and bill the customers and make them accessible to your services.

Apigee terminology

The following are the basic terminologies that are used by the app developers in their day-to-day development services. Let me explain them one-by-one,

API -> An application programming interface- a set of protocols, rules, or definitions. This API makes it easier to consume the application capabilities or data from another application. This provides stability and simplifies the entry points to application logic or data. APIs enables developers to easily access and reuse the already existing application developed by other developers. Apigee provides a lot of useful information about API and data consumption.

API proxy -> this is kind of a façade available on Edge for APIs, HTTP services, and application developments. An API is a set of configuration files, policies, and codes provided by Apigee edge. Theses API proxies are generated and configured using the Apigee Edge management user interface applications or they can also be configured locally in any text editor or IDE. API proxy mainly used as a façade backend service or HTTP services that are developed for mobile applications or web service applications.

API base path and resources-> An API are made up of a 'base path' and a set of 'API resources'. Each API proxy finds a default base path point, and optionally available multiple API resource paths. Simply you can consider API as a set of multiple URLs and all of these URLs share a common base path.

API product-> it is nothing but a collection of URLs with combined quota or any service plan, which is published by the developer at the design time. API products can be used as an API package for monetization.

API Package-> is a collection of API products that are represented as a bundle and associated with the rate of plans described in the Monetization process.

App-> this is an abbreviation of 'Application'. This refers to mobile applications that consume APIs. These apps are developed by developers using a variety of programming languages and platforms.

Environment-> this is a runtime context where you can execute the API proxies. Each API's must be added to this environment before any proxy is exposed over the system network.

Organization-> this is a container that holds the apigee objects like details of Apigee Edge account, API proxies used in Apigee, an application interface products, application interface Apigee packages, apps development, and developers.

Policy-> A policy is nothing but a set of executed atomics, the reusable unit of logic data, and proxy processing flow.

API resource path-> a resource path is a uniform resource identifier (URI) that is used to identify the network path.

Versions-> the version of the developer-facing API interface.

Revision-> a numbered, version-controlled package of policies and configurations are used in API proxy. This revision term comes from the various Apigee software upgrades. 

Development tools in Apigee Edge

If you are an API developer, you develop it for the consumption of client apps. These APIs are used to create, configure, and monitor API products, API proxy, and also services that enable the creation of HTTP server requests. There are two types of development tools available in Apigee Edge they are,

1) Use the UI

2) Use the Apigee API

1) Use the UI:

This is browser-based tools, developer can use this tool to create, configure, and manage all kinds of API products, API proxies, and HTTP services. The following table describes how to access this UI;

Product UI name URL access
Edge Edge UI

to access this edge UI, click on the following URL

https://apigee.com/edge

Apigee Hybrid Apigee Hybrid UI

To access this Apigee hybrid UI, click on the following link

https://apigee.google.com/edge

Edge for Private Cloud Classic Edge UI

To access this classic edge UI, click the following URL,

http://ms-ip:9000

Where ms-IP is the IP address.

Using this Apigee UI you can perform the following tasks

  • You can create the API proxies by editing API code and this helps you to trace the request flows through your API proxies.
  • You can also create API products that store the bundle of proxies to exposure to the client requests.
  • This manages developers and developer apps.
  • Helps you to configure your app test and environment products.
  • This enables the developer to implement javaScript and Node.js applications.

2) Use the Apigee API:

Developers can use this Apigee edge API’s to manage all the API resources in Edge. This API also provides the access request to low-level capabilities that are not used by the Apigee UI.

The following table describes how to use this Apigee API;

Apigee API’s name
Base path

Description
Edge APIs https://api.enetrprise.apigee.com/v1/organizations/org_name
This API endpoint for the Edge and Apigee Edge for private cloud products

Apigee APIs

https://apigee.googlepapis.com/v1/organizations/org_name

This supports the API endpoint for the Apigee hybrid product.

This API also stores the data configuration information and also authentication information (for example; username and password). The following API methods are used to access any kind of request, HTTP GET, POST, PUT and DELETE methods.

There are two types of access available under this Apigee Edge API:

a) Authenticating Access:

Before calling any APIs you should authenticate yourself to the respective API. The following are simple ways:

  • OAuth2
  • SAML
  • Basic Auth

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b) Understanding the Apigee API base path:

The following are the path required to access the request;

  • A base path: this contains your organization name.
  • An edge point: This tends to the edge resource you’re accessing.

API Development lifecycle

Every company has its own unique software development life cycle (SDLC). This lifecycle has to synchronize and alignment of all API proxies' deployment that includes the same processes that the developer uses today that is developing, testing, and deployment of any applications.

All the APIs provide the tools and other RESTFUL API's they help you to integrate API proxy deployment and management of an organization. RESTFUL APIs are commonly used to write code, scripting, deployment of any API proxies, and also migrate these proxies from one environment to another environment.

Three stages come under API development life cycle,

  • Creation API stage
  • Controlling API stage
  • Consume API stage

Let’s discuss one by one,

Creation API stage: In this stage of the API lifecycle, developers will involve in the creation of their API for their applications. This consists of 4 components;

a) Model

b) Orchestrate

c) Transform

d) Document.

Controlling API stage: In this stage of the API lifecycle, once the creation of an API job is done, the developer should control them to protect or authorization purposes.

4 factors come under this stage,

a) Deploy

b) Manage

c) Secure

d) Scale

Consumption API stage: In this stage of the API lifecycle, the developer has to configure and also needs to consume data applications. This can be done by the following components;

a) Publish

b) Discover

c) Invoke

d) Monetize. 

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Key Points of API proxy development

Here are the few major points on characteristics of API Proxies, let me explain the main points,

  • API’s are the entry points for one application to use the capabilities of another

Here developer implements the APIs to create API proxies with the use of API logics as a sequence of steps that executes in response to the requests from the client's code. Developers can expose the API proxy by defining the endpoint that contains the URL, resource paths, and HTTP requests, and so on.

  • You can arrange the sequence of API proxy logics using flows:

While developing any application, data that we used are flows through the application development with the help of Condition logic. In Apigee Edge, the processes are made up of data flows. Flows are nothing but a sequence of stages or steps that are used in the making of an API proxy's processing path.

  • You can access the state of data through flow variables created by API proxies

An API proxy can able to access the variable that represents the execution state. Any API user can access these variables from the XML that manages and configures the API proxies and policies. You can even access these variables with the help of any procedural languages like Java, javascript, and python.

  • You can have API Proxies execute conditionally:

Like other programming languages, the API proxies also have the facility to execute the code conditionally. Conditions are consists of API proxy state and accessible flow variables.

  • You implement most logic in an API proxy using policies:

Most of the logic that is used in API proxy is considered as Policies. A policy is an Apigee Edge component that encapsulated logic for functional areas such as traffic management, security management.

  • You can include reusable sets of functionality:

When you created an API proxy that contains logic this logic will be used for multiple places at the time of code execution. Developers can collect other API proxies from multiple places.

  • You can debug a proxy with the trace tool:

Apigee Edge contains a trace tool mainly used to examine the API proxy execution flow. This tool also supports debugging and testing of proxy execution codes.

  • You can handle API proxy errors as Faults:

Developers can customize the API client errors just by configuring the fault handler in Apigee Edge. You will get notified by messages when the system finds any fault in API proxy.

The transition from classic Edge UI

Now all the interactions in the Apigee Edge managed by a newly developed Edge user interface (UI). Few major enhancements of this Edge UI are as follows;

  • API proxy management phase and navigation: this enables users to easily navigate through different API proxy management phases using the new side navigation bar.
  • Integrated Open API specification editor: You can create and edit open API specifications using the Spec editor which is integrated into the Edge UI design flow.
  • Simplified API proxy creation using Open API specification: you can easily and quickly create API proxy using any open API specifications that you have already created and imported.
  • Self-service SAML: this SAML enables the proper authentication for the members of the organizations can be adapted to your identity service.
  • Hosted targets: run the script language node.Js in any runtime environment hosted by Apigee Edge.
  • Virtual host management: The user can host multiple domains on a single server to handle and manage the API requests to multiple domain names.
  • Integrated portal development: Apigee Edge includes tools like simple-to-use and robust portal development tools to build your developer portal and documents.
  • Improved developer program management: this identity provider used for authentication of the portal that includes information like user registration and sign-in experience.
  • Asynchronous Custom reports: run these custom reports asynchronously as a background job to analyze and create reports that span a large time interval.
  • API monitoring: enable the operations team to increase the API availability for mainly application developers and customers.
  • Security monitoring: now you need to understand how your API proxies are configured for security and also check the runtime conditions that impact the proxy security.
  • Extensions: integrate the external resources into your API proxies. So that you could integrate google cloud platform services such as Google cloud storage. API uses this Extension at the run time to exchange the requests and interacts with external resources.

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How to create your Apigee Edge Account

Now it's time to create your first ever Apigee Edge account in your organization. Apigee Edge offers free account creation for a limited time.

To create a free 60-days trial Apigee edge account:

Steps:

1) Go to the link https://login.apigee.com/sign_up.

2) Open the link-> enters the required information.

3) Click the create account button (or sign up).

4) The user account information will send to your email account-> then go to your mail inbox-> click the account Verification.

After that just click the email link, then the browser tab is opened to the login page that is, https://login.apigee.com/login.

5) Now log in with the email and password that you used to sign up.

Apigee activates your account and just log in to the Apigee Edge UI.

Point to be noted:

a) In a few cases, this may take a few minutes for the activation to complete and you will see the progress dialog.

Once your account is activated, the following message appears:

6) Now click the get started to access the Apigee Edge UI.

Sign in and manage your Apigee edge account

The following methods describe how to manage your Apigee Edge account,

To sign in to your Apigee Edge account follow the below steps;

a) First, navigate to the Edge UI:

  • Edge UI: Apigee login
  • Classic Edge UI (this is for private cloud only): http://ms-ip:9000 where IP is the IP address or server management DNS name.

b) Now enter your Apigee Edge login details (Apigee username and password) -> click the Sign in button.

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Reset your password

Steps:

1) Sign out of your Apigee Edge account.

2) Click the Reset Password -> on the sign-in page-> then it displays the Reset your password page.

3) Enter your Email Address.

4) Click the Send Reset password Link-> that is sent to your email address.

5) Then click the Reset password link -> follow the prompts to reset your password.

6) Now sign in using your new password. 

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Advantages of using Apigee Edge

Here I am going to explain the primary advantages of using Apigee Edge in your organization;

Caching is available at the resource or API level.

No soft limits on the resources

Offers individual endpoints per service

Security or Access control per API resources

  • Consistent logging for the API's that can debug with the tracing
  • Analytics for the APIs.

Conclusion

In this blog, you will learn basic concepts, terminologies, and also the creation of an Apigee Account in your organization. Apigee is a cloud development platform where you can manage and develop your APIs. This platform provides scalability, controlling, monetizing, and deploying the API interfaces using API proxies, logics, and resources. Apigee Edge tool is widely used in building web services and mobile application development. I hope this blog may help the cloud developers and cloud community forums to gain in-depth knowledge of this Apigee Edge platform.

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Mudassir
Mudassir
DevOps ERP and IAM tools
Mudaasir is a programming developer for hkr trainings. He has a well knowledge of today’s technology and I’ve loved technology my entire life. And also been lucky enough to work for the programmer including science and technology. Big thanks to everyone who has followed me on LinkedIn and twitter.

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