Call REST Service

Last update: Edit

1 Introduction

The Call REST service activity can be used to call a REST endpoint. You can specify the location and how the response of the REST call should be handled.

2 Properties

An example of call rest action properties is represented in the image below:

call rest action properties

There are two sets of properties for this activity, those in the dialog box on the left, and those in the properties pane on the right.

The call rest action properties pane consists of the following sections:

3 Action Section

The Action section of the properties pane shows the action associated with this activity.

You can open a dialog box to configure this action by clicking the ellipsis () next to the action.

You can also open the dialog box by double-clicking the activity in the microflow or right-clicking the activity and selecting Properties.

The properties dialog box consists of four tabs:

4 General Tab

4.1 Location

The Location property defines the REST endpoint to be called.

The location needs to be entered using a string template which must result in a valid URL string.

4.1.1 String Template

The template for the location can contain parameters that are written as a number between braces (for example, {1}). The first parameter has the number 1, the second 2, etc. You can escape the opening brace ({), by using a double opening brace ({{).

4.1.2 Parameters

For each parameter in the template, you can specify its value using a microflow expression resulting in a string value. This value will be inserted at the position of the parameter.

4.2 HTTP Method

The HTTP method property defines the HTTP method to use when calling a REST endpoint. The possible values are: GET, POST, PUT, PATCH, DELETE, HEAD, and OPTIONS.

4.3 Use Timeout on Request

Set Use timeout on request to Yes to be able specify how long the Call REST activity should wait for the REST endpoint to respond.

Default value: Yes

4.4 Timeout (s)

If the REST endpoint has not responded after the number of seconds in Timeout (s), an exception will occur and the microflow will roll back or go into your custom error handler.

Default value: 300 seconds

4.5 Proxy Configuration

In almost all cases, you can ignore this setting. Use app settings is a good default value.

If desired, you can configure whether to use a proxy for the request. These are the choices:

  • Use app settings – use whatever settings are defined at the app level (default)
  • Override – override the app-level settings for this action
  • No proxy – do not use a proxy for this action, even if there is a proxy configured at the app level

When you select Override, you can configure dynamically whether to use a proxy. You then supply the host, port, username, and password settings for the proxy.

4.6 Client certificate

In most cases, the default Use app settings can be used.

However, you can specify a client certificate to use for the request by selecting Override.

The options are:

  • Use app settings(default) – use the settings that are defined at the app level
  • Override – override the app-level settings for this action

When you select Override, you can configure which client certificate will be used. Click Edit to specify the Client certificate identifier. This identifier can be set in different places, depending on where you deploy the app:

  • When you deploy the app in the Mendix cloud, set the Client certificate identifier to the desired WEB SERVICE CALL NAME when pinning a client certificate.
  • When you deploy the app elsewhere, the identifier is set in the custom setting ClientCertificateUsages. For testing locally, this can be set as a custom server setting in a Configuration.

When this identifier is not set for the environment where your app is deployed (either not pinned or not present in ClientCertificateUsages), the default settings will be used (as if Use app settings were selected).

5 HTTP Headers Tab

5.1 Use HTTP Authentication

The Use HTTP authentication check box defines whether basic authentication should be used.

5.2 User Name

The User name property defines the user name that will be used to authenticate over HTTP. The user name needs to be entered using microflow Expressions. The microflow expression should result in a string.

5.3 Password

The Password property defines the password that will be used to authenticate over HTTP. The password needs to be entered using expressions. The microflow expression should result in a string.

5.4 Custom HTTP Headers

These headers are added to the HTTP request header. Each custom header is a pair with a key and a value (a microflow expression).

6 Request Tab

The sections below describe the options in the drop-down menu for generating the request.

6.1 Export Mapping for the Entire Request

This option allows you to use a single export mapping for the body of the request.

6.1.1 Mapping

Select the mapping that you want to apply.

6.1.2 Parameter Type

If the export mapping requires an input, this field shows the type of the input.

6.1.3 Parameter

If the export mapping requires an input, you can select a parameter of the correct type.

6.1.4 Content Type

If the export mapping is based on a message definition, it can export either XML or JSON. Choose the type of output you want.

6.2 Binary for the Entire Request

This option allows you to send binary data (for example, the contents of a FileDocument).

6.3 Form-Data

This option allows you to generate a multipart/form-data request for multiple parts. Each part is a pair with a key and a value (microflow expression).

FileDocuments and images are are also supported for this option when used as variables in microflow expressions.

For each part, you can specify the HTTP headers. For each part, by default, the Content-Disposition (for file documents and images) and Content-Type (for all parts) headers are added. You can specify different values for these headers, or add other headers.

6.3.1 Content Type

Setting up a Content-Type header for a form-data request will result in a consistency error, as it will automatically be set to multipart/form-data.

The content type for the FileDocument part is application/octet-stream.

6.4 Custom Request Template

This option allows you to generate the request using a string template. The template defines the structure of the request in plain text.

See String Template, above, for more information on constructing strings from templates.

7 Response Tab

7.1 Response Handling

These are the options in the drop-down menu for handling the response:

  • Apply import mapping – if the response is JSON or XML, it can be transformed directly into objects using an import mapping; the fields that you can choose here are described in the Import Mapping action
  • Store in an HTTP response – any successful HTTP response can be stored directly in an HttpResponse object, and the $latestHttpResponse variable is also updated
  • Store in a file document – if the response contains binary content (for example, a PDF), it can be stored in an object of an entity type which inherits from System.FileDocument
  • Store in a string – if the response is a string (for example, CSV), it can be stored directly in a string variable
  • Do not store in a variable - use this option when the call does not return anything useful

7.2 Type

The Type field defines the type of the output.

7.3 Variable

The Variable field defines the name for the result of the operation.

7.4 Store Message Body in $latestHttpResponse Variable

If HTTP response status code is not successful (for example, [4xx] or [5xx]), the flow will continue in an error handler.

8 Common Section

For more information on properties in this section, see Common Properties.

9 Troubleshooting

9.1 java.net.SocketException – Connection reset

This error is occurs when your app’s infrastructure closes the connection because it is inactive. Your app client does not know this and gets this error when it makes a new request.

There are two ways to resolve this:

  1. Alter the value of the http.client.CleanupAfterSeconds runtime setting to be less than the connection timeout. This will ensure that the your app client will create a new HTTP client for the request.

  2. Handle the error in your microflow and retry a number of times before returning the error. Your flow might look similar to the one below.