AppCode 2018.1 Help

HTTP Client in AppCode Code Editor

When testing a web service, you can create, edit, and execute HTTP Requests directly in the AppCode code editor.

HTTP Requests are stored in the .http and .rest files and are marked with the icon_rest_file icon.

Support for HTTP files inside the AppCode code editor includes the following features:

If necessary, configure the Proxy settings on the HTTP Proxy page of the Settings/Preferences (⌘,) dialog.

Creating an HTTP request file

You can work with HTTP requests either from scratch files or from physical files of the HTTP Request type.

Scratch files can be used to test HTTP requests during development. A scratch file is not stored inside a project, so AppCode can modify it and add additional information about the request. When an HTTP request is executed from a scratch file, the link to the response output file is added below the request and at the top of the requests history file.

Create an HTTP requests scratch file

  • Press ⇧⌘N and select HTTP Request.

Physical files can be used for documenting, testing and validating HTTP requests. A physical file is stored inside your project, and AppCode will not modify it. When an HTTP request is executed from a physical file, this file is not modified. Information about the executed request with the link to the response output file is added to the top of the requests history file.

Create a physical HTTP requests file

  • On the File menu, point to New, and then click HTTP Request.

Composing an HTTP request

You can type HTTP requests directly in the created HTTP request file using the following general syntax:

Method Request-URI HTTP-Version Header-field: Header-value Request-Body

AppCode uses the HTTP request in Editor format, which provides a simple way to create, execute, and store information about HTTP requests, as demonstrated by the following examples:

  • You can omit the request method and specify only the URI to use GET by default:

    // A basic request
  • To mark the end of a request and compose another one in the same file, type ###:

    // A basic request ### // Longer request with method GET

    It may be more convenient to break long requests into several lines. Note that in this case all query string lines but the first one must be indented, for example:

    // Using line breaks with indent GET /api /html /get ?id=123 &value=content
  • To specify the request message body, prepend it with a blank line. You can either provide the request body in place or read it from a file.

    • If you set the Content-Type header field value to one of the languages supported by AppCode, then the corresponding language fragment will be auto-injected into the HTTP request message body.
    • To read the request body from a file, type the < symbol followed by the path to the file.
    // The request body is provided in place POST HTTP/1.1 Content-Type: application/json Cookie: key=first-value { "key" : "value", "list": [1, 2, 3] } ### // The request body is read from a file POST Content-Type: application/json < ./input.json
  • You can execute HTTP requests with the multipart/form-data content type. To send a file as part of the multipart/form-data message, include the filename parameter in the Content-Disposition header.

    POST HTTP/1.1 Content-Type: multipart/form-data; boundary=boundary --boundary Content-Disposition: form-data; name="first"; filename="input.txt" // The 'input.txt' file will be uploaded < ./input.txt --boundary Content-Disposition: form-data; name="second"; filename="input-second.txt" // A temporary 'input-second.txt' file with the 'Text' content will be created and uploaded Text --boundary Content-Disposition: form-data; name="third"; // The 'input.txt' file contents will be sent as plain text. < ./input.txt --boundary--

Using environment variables

When composing an HTTP request, you can parametrize its elements using environment variables. For example, instead of providing the host name in your request explicitly, you can use the {{host}} placeholder. Then you define a set of environment variables in your project holding the desired host definitions. When executing the request, AppCode will provide a choice of defined environments, in our case, the host to send the request to:


Environment variables are defined in the rest-client.env.json or http-client.env.json environment files, which must be stored inside the project.

A variable can hold the values for host, port, path, query parameter or value, and header value. The name of the variable can only contain letters, digits, the underscore symbol (_), or the hyphen symbol (-).

The following sample environment file defines two environments: development and production.

{ "development": { "host": "localhost", "id-value": 12345 }, "production": { "host": "", "id-value": 6789 } }

The example HTTP request is as follows:

GET http://{{host}}/api/json/get?id={{id-value}}&key={{unresolved_var}}

When you execute the above request, AppCode provides a choice between the defined execution environments:


Depending on you choice, the resulting request will be one of the following:

  • development:
    GET http://localhost/api/json/get?id=12345&key={{unresolved_var}}
  • production:

Since the {{unresolved-var}} variable is not defined in the environment file, AppCode will send the {{unresolved-var}} text as part of the request in both cases.

Executing an HTTP request

  1. If you are going to test your own web service, make sure it is deployed and running.
  2. Do any of the following:
    • Click the Run icon run_icon in the left gutter of the editor next to the request you want to run. On the pop-up menu, select Run <request name>.
    • Place the caret at the request you want to execute, press ⌥⏎ and select the Run <request name> intention action.

After the request is executed, you can navigate to the received response file.

Open a request in the browser

You can open an HTTP request in the browser specified in the Web Browsers section of the AppCode settings. This can be your system default browser, or the one of your choice.

  • Do any of the following:
    • Place the caret at the request's first line and choose View | Jump to Source on the main menu, or press ⌘B or ⌘↓.
    • Ctrl+Click (for Windows and Linux) or Command+Click (for macOS) the request line:

Move an HTTP request

You can use the Move refactoring (F6) to move your HTTP requests from scratches to physical files, as well as between physical files.

  1. Select the request to be moved and do one of the following:
    • On the main menu, or on the context menu, choose Refactor | Move.
    • Press F6.
  2. In the dialog box that opens, click browse to select the file or type the full path to the file you want to move the request to. Note that you can specify the name of a non-existing file, in which case a new file with the provided name will be created automatically.

Viewing responses from web services

  1. Switch to the Run Tool Window, which opens automatically as soon as a response is received.
  2. By default, the server response is shown in the format specified in the request header via the content-type field. To have the response converted into another format, use the View as HTML classTypeHtml, View as XML ps iconFileTypeXML View as JSON viewAsJSON buttons.

When you execute an HTTP request, AppCode automatically saves the response into a separate file under the .idea/httpRequests/ directory. You can view the 50 most recently stored responses and navigate to the corresponding files using the requests history. If the request was executed from a scratch file, the link to its response output is also added below the original request:


Open a response file in the editor

  • Place the caret at the link to the response you want to open, and choose View | Jump to Source on the main menu, or press ⌘B or ⌘↓.
  • Ctrl+Click (for Windows and Linux) or Command+Click (for macOS) the response line:

Compare responses in a scratch file

When a request is executed from a scratch file, the link to the response output file is added below the original request.

  • Do any of the following:
    • Place the caret at the link to the response file. Press ⌥⏎ and select the Compare with <response name> intention action.
    • Click the ps_compare_responses_icon icon in the left gutter and select Compare with <response name> from the pop-up menu:

Compare responses in the requests history

When a request is executed from a physical file, the link to the response output is added to the requests history.

  1. Place the caret at the link to the response file. Choose View | Jump to Source on the main menu, or press ⌘B or ⌘↓ to open this file in a new editor tab.
  2. Choose View | Compare with... on the main menu, or press ⌘D. AppCode will prompt you to open a response file from the httpRequests folder.
  3. Select the response file you would like to compare the current file with and click Open.

The two response files will be opened in the Differences viewer allowing you to compare their contents:


Viewing requests history

AppCode automatically saves the 50 recently executed requests into the http-requests-log.http file, which is stored on the project level under the .idea/httpRequests/ directory. Using the requests history, you can quickly navigate to a particular response as well as re-run any request.


Open the requests history

  • Click the Show HTTP Requests History icon show http requests history button in the top-right corner of the editor or choose Tools | Show HTTP Requests History on the main menu.

Configuring Proxy settings

  1. In the Settings/Preferences dialog (⌘,), choose System Settings under Appearance & Behavior, then choose HTTP Proxy.
  2. In the Proxy dialog that opens, specify the following:
    • Enter the proxy host name and port number in the Proxy host and Proxy port text boxes respectively.
    • To enable authorization, select the Use authorization checkbox and type the user name and password in the corresponding fields.
Last modified: 29 March 2018