4 min readUpdated May 22, 2023

Introducing Control API: provision & configure Ably programmatically

Introducing Control API: provision & configure Ably programmatically
Andra DinuAndra Dinu

DevOps engineers working on fast-scaling software architectures that include Ably now have it a bit easier with Control API. This new feature allows you to increase your testing capability and to configure complex production systems quickly and safely, directly from your configuration and orchestration tools.

The containerized, dynamically orchestrated, microservice-oriented nature of cloud-native applications makes DevOps practices particularly well suited for building products and services in the cloud.

Ably is part of the software architecture of many rapidly growing cloud-native applications, enabling services and products to deliver complete realtime functionality directly to their end-users. The Ably platform already helps DevOps engineers avoid the overhead they would sustain if they were to build and maintain realtime functionality from scratch. Now, it is a lot easier for DevOps to save time and avoid potential errors resulting from manual operations, by providing a way to easily integrate Ably into CI/CD pipelines and orchestration tools and managing it programmatically.

World, meet the new Control API.

Must read: Our Engineering team shares the load testing strategy for Control API

About Control API

Control API is a REST API that allows you to manage Ably’s configuration programmatically, from your configuration and orchestration tools. You can completely configure existing Ably apps using only the Control API. Everything you can do to an application via your dashboard is now possible via API.

Control API is currently in beta, with functional and performance improvements coming down the way. You can use Control API to programmatically create, configure and delete the following Ably resources:

  • Apps
  • API keys
  • Channel rules/Namespaces
  • Queues
  • Rules
  • Stats (not available in beta)

Please note that, at the moment, you cannot use Control API  to programatically create, configure and delete data streams via API Streamer.

Control API will help you save time and avoid potential errors resulting from manual configurations. Here are three ways in which you can use it:

  • Drive your CI/CD pipeline with Ably apps. When you need to create a testing or acceptance environment that is identical to production, you can provision and tear down Ably apps through the Control API. Instead of configuring apps manually, you can now simply write a script once and run it multiple times.
  • Ensure an audit trace and easy configuration recovery. The configuration of complex production systems is subject to continuous change. You can now track and synchronize such changes with your configuration management tools, via the Control API.
  • Scale automatically with the needs of your business. If you are using Ably to distribute data streams to other commercial partners, you need to create a new app or API key for each partner, which can become time-consuming and increasingly unwieldy at scale. You can now automatically add and delete new APIs or API keys via the Control API, instead of manually through the dashboard.
Four Pillars of Dependability whitepaper: delve into Ably's architecture 

Getting started with Control API

To access Control API, log into your Ably dashboard, go to 'My Access Tokens' in the top menu bar, then create an access token.

Specify the capabilities and rights for your access tokens, then create them. Remember you can revoke or edit tokens at any time. That’s it! Now you can integrate with the Control API.  

You can create a free Ably account to get started. For more information about Control API, read our documentation or get in touch.

Further reading

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