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Top API Designing and Testing Tools in 2021

APIs becoming the essential components for software development, it is very important for developers and programmers to perform API tests after creating them to check whether developed API meets the anticipated threshold.

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Introduction

With today’s businesses running a plethora of systems across the diverse environment, APIs (Application Programming Interface) are one of the essential components of software development. APIs are means by which two different programs are able to communicate. It is important to make appropriate API selections because it determines the efficiency in performance, functionality, security, and reliability of the software product. There are a plethora of open-source APIs to choose from. In this blog, we are going to walk through the various open-source API designing, developing, and testing tools with their own advantages and limitations.

1. Amazon API Gateway

Amazon API Gateway is an AWS service that allows developers to create, publish, maintain, monitor, and secure REST, HTTP, and WebSocket APIs at scale. AWS offers a free version of the API gateway that maxes out at one million API calls per month and lasts for one year. According to Matt Asay, work for AWS “ Paid version of Amazon API Gateway allows you to build the front-end APIs for applications built on Amazon EC2, Amazon Lambda, and other web applications with meta-tools like traffic management, API version control, and more. It offers features that allow you to build, deploy, and manage APIs, API lifecycle management, API key for third-party developers, and AWS authorization. This solution gives you a unified way to have your API accessed.”

2. Linx

Linx is a powerful tool for creating and calling internal and external web services. It is extensively used to extend an API that requires integration with other technologies. For example, this can be used to load or push data into a database. It can also be useful with pushing updates to notification steam as well as many other uses. It offers features from database to cryptography to the cloud, which can create many possibilities for integrating your API with multiple technologies. It is simple and precise because it uses common programming logic and principles with pre-built functionalities to avoid large pieces of code. While configuring APIs can be relatively easy for developers, creating and using APIs can be a time-consuming process. With Linx, you can simply drag and drop your module into the canvas and set up configurations. If you are working with an application that requires consuming several APIs, the process of integration with an external server becomes more efficient and can be handled by business analysts and IT professionals alike.

3. Swagger Editor

Swagger Editor is one of the most efficient API design tools on the market. Swagger Editor allows you to design and document APIs using a free web-based open-source editor. It is specially designed for creating OpenAPI-based APIs. It also provides options to work web-based or in a local environment. According to Piyush Jain, Founder of Simpalm, Chicago based app development company  “Swagger is very helpful for creating easy and shareable documentation that can drastically improve the user experience. It provides instant visualization of documentations as it is created and also has numerous customization options. It also offers auto-completion tools that help to create server stubs for APIs in a wide array of programming languages.”

4. BlazeMeter

Blazemeter is an API load testing service that provides real-time reporting. It offers features like geo-distributed load testing. This means you can have traffic generated from servers on multiple continents and support for tests created by Apache JMeter. With the free tier of Blazemeter, you can run 10 tests per month, maximum of 20 minutes each with upto 50 concurrent users, one shared load generator, and one week of data retention. A paid plan of $99 per month that includes 1000 concurrent users, 200 tests per year, and 3 months of data retention. Several other benefits associated with Blazemeter include its own cloud service, removing the need to set it up on-premise. Blazemeter allows several methods of creating performance tests using several efficient open-source applications therefore there is no need to learn and use a new tool or language.

5. IBM API connect

IBM API Connect is a modern, scalable, and intuitive API platform that allows you to create, secure, manage and monetize APIs. It is also available with other capabilities as an IBM Cloud Pak solution which can help you achieve your application modernization goal. It is secure because API Connect’s security is built on a market-leading IBM DataPower gateway. It includes a single, signed, and encrypted gateway which reduces your risk. 22% of the market share is held by IBM API connect which is more than any other competitor. It is a trusted API solution to manage and protect services and data across multi-cloud environments. It is scalable because it has a microservices-based architecture that can efficiently scale its components to meet SLAs. API connect improves the API user experience while maintaining performance. It provides a user-friendly design that allows users to quickly create, manage, and secure APIs, reducing administrative time.

6. Postman

Postman provides a complete API development and testing environment that enables creating both simple and complex APIs, as well as verifying their functionality before implementing them in your application. You can manually create simple API calls using a very user-friendly interface. As it is crucial to ensure that the APIs are working properly, it is extremely helpful to have an environment where you can verify if payloads are being sent and/or received properly before any development work. Postman provides full integration with the existing SDLC method, ranging from various agile and Dev/Ops environments to larger waterfall-type organizational models. This makes it well suited for the professional development process.

Conclusion

Working with APIs may seem complicated because it connects seemingly unrelated applications and makes them work together. With the evolution of new technologies, the process has become easier. APIs make it possible to create lightweight applications which can easily adapt to the ever-changing ecosystem of web software. It is crucial to have the right API design tools because it enables API development and management to become a seamless part of your development process and allows you and your client to remain agile in today’s competitive environment.

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