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RESTful APIs: Now Natively Available with NetApp ONTAP 9.6 Software

Yuvaraju Balaraman

NetApp® ONTAP® 9.6 adds support for an expanded RESTful API. In comparison to the ONTAPI® application, the ONTAP REST APIs offer a vastly simplified workflow-driven user experience, enabling you to perform multiple operations on a given storage object with a single API. RESTful APIs are the industry standard, and as enterprises are standardizing on RESTful APIs, we have a tremendous opportunity to make inroads into new segments.

Modern ONTAP Programmable API

Let’s look at the key principles that guided the design of the ONTAP REST API:

  • Independent. Native on-box REST APIs mean that there is no dependency on an external management station to be consumed by the clients.
  • Efficient. ONTAP REST APIs are efficient both in response to API calls and in their use of ONTAP resources.
  • Extensible. The ONTAP REST API framework allows integration with the REST API-based data center management infrastructure.

What About the REST API Maturity Level?

ONTAP RESTful APIs support hypermedia controls that are classified as maturity level 3, the highest of the four maturity levels (levels 0-3).

ONTAP REST APIs use Hypertext Application Language (HAL) as the mechanism to support Hypermedia as the Engine of Application State (HATEOAS). When an object or attribute is returned that identifies a specific resource, a HAL-encoded link is also returned so that you can easily discover resources and obtain details about the resource.

"aggregate": {

    "name": "aggr0",

    "_links": {

        "self": {

            "href": "/api/storage/aggregates/aggr0"




Simplified ONTAP Object Model

In addition to the design principles, a concerted effort resulted in a simplified external representation of ONTAP and its features. This new ONTAP object model establishes categories within the API that clearly identify blocks of common functionality.  The model also uses objects to compose new higher-level constructs to offer simplified views of common functionality.

NFS and CIFS API sets are classified under the NAS category, and API sets to manage physical and logical storage are classified under the storage category.

The object model uses standard prefixes, suffixes, and verbs for a simplified user experience. Common names and terminology make the ONTAP RESTful APIs easier to learn and remember.

Accessing REST API Documentation from an ONTAP 9.6 Instance

You can access the ONTAP 9.6 RESTful API online documentation for information about the types of API calls available to you, as well as details about using each API endpoint.

Each API method includes usage examples, as well as a model that displays all the required and optional properties supported by the method.

Click the Model link, available with every API method, to see all the required and optional properties supported by that method.

Authorized Users Can Try Out ONTAP REST APIs

The Try it Out option enables authorized users to explore the REST API and generate an authorized cURL output to run from a client.

This blog gave you a sneak peek into the simplified workflow-driven RESTful APIs delivered with ONTAP 9.6. To learn more about the ONTAP REST API, go to the ONTAP 9 Documentation Center

Stay tuned for the next blog post in the series, about how ONTAP RESTful APIs can offer a vastly simplified workflow-driven user experience in comparison to the ONTAPI application.

Yuvaraju Balaraman

Yuvaraju Balaraman is a Senior Technical Marketing Engineer for the manageability products and solutions group at NetApp. He has good understanding of Management and Data Protection Solutions. Prior to NetApp, Yuvaraju has worked at Hewlett Packard and a partner as a backup and storage solutions consultant.

View all Posts by Yuvaraju Balaraman

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