Release Plan for E-utility API Keys


As promised in our post this past spring, we are now announcing the scheduled release of API keys for the E-utilities API. If you’ve missed some of our original discussion of these keys, or have questions about how to get a key, you may want to check out this post.

In this post, we’ll be discussing three things:

  • The current status of API keys
  • Upcoming testing periods in September
  • Final public release on December 1, 2018.

So what’s the current status of keys?

At present API keys are only active in this sandbox environment:

https://api.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/eutils/esearch.fcgi?

Simply substitute any of the other E-utilities (e.g. esummary, efetch) for esearch. In this sandbox, API keys are fully active as they will eventually be on production (https://eutils.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/eutils/):

  • Requests without an API key have a rate limit of 3 requests/second.
  • Requests with an API key have a default rate limit of 10 requests/second (or a higher rate limit that you’ve negotiated with us).

What are these testing periods?

In September we will be activating API keys on production for three 1-hour periods:

  • Sept 15, 6:00-7:00 PM EDT
  • Sept 20, 10:00-11:00 AM EDT
  • Sept 25, 2:00-3:00 AM EDT

During these testing periods, API keys will behave exactly as they do in the sandbox environment. Any existing key that you have will become active in production for that 1-hour period. We will be announcing each of these periods 1 day in advance on the utilities-announce mailing list.

When will API keys be fully released?

At 12:00 AM EST on December 1, 2018, API keys will become fully active in our production environment.

Want to learn more?

Please contact us at info@ncbi.nlm.nih.gov if you have questions or comments, or use this form.

Also, sign up for our webinar at 12:00 PM EDT on September 5, during which we’ll discuss this release plan and take your questions.

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