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Apiary vs Swagger UI: What are the differences?

Introduction

In this section, we will discuss the key differences between Apiary and Swagger UI.

  1. Data Format Support: One key difference is the data format support. Apiary primarily uses API Blueprint, which is a markdown-based format, to define APIs. On the other hand, Swagger UI uses the OpenAPI Specification (formerly known as Swagger), which is a widely adopted specification format that allows defining APIs in JSON or YAML. So, while Apiary is limited to API Blueprint, Swagger UI offers more flexibility in terms of data format.

  2. User Interface: Another significant difference lies in the user interface. Apiary provides a more structured and user-friendly interface, allowing users to document and design APIs with ease. It offers a visually appealing layout, auto-generated documentation, and powerful collaboration features. In contrast, Swagger UI focuses more on displaying API documentation in a machine-readable format. Its interface is less visually appealing and may require some technical accuracy when defining APIs.

  3. Testing and Mocking: Apiary stands out from Swagger UI in terms of testing and mocking capabilities. Apiary provides built-in tools for testing and mocking APIs, allowing users to simulate API responses and develop their APIs more efficiently. Swagger UI, on the other hand, primarily focuses on generating interactive API documentation and lacks the integrated testing and mocking functionalities offered by Apiary.

  4. Code Generation: When it comes to code generation, Swagger UI has an advantage over Apiary. Swagger UI allows users to generate client SDKs, server stubs, and other code artifacts based on the defined API specification. It provides code generation options in various programming languages, making it easier for developers to implement the API in their preferred language. Apiary, on the other hand, does not offer built-in code generation capabilities.

  5. Integration and Ecosystem: Both Apiary and Swagger UI have their own ecosystems and integration capabilities. However, Swagger UI, being based on the OpenAPI Specification, has a broader ecosystem and wider adoption in the API community. There are various third-party tools, libraries, and frameworks available that support OpenAPI, making it easier to integrate and build upon the Swagger UI documentation. Apiary, being a proprietary format, has a smaller ecosystem in comparison.

  6. Pricing and Licensing: The final difference is in terms of pricing and licensing. Apiary offers both free and paid plans, with various features and usage limits. The details of the pricing plans can be found on the Apiary website. On the other hand, Swagger UI is an open-source project that is available for free under the Apache License 2.0. This makes Swagger UI more accessible and cost-effective for individuals or organizations with budget constraints.

In summary, Apiary and Swagger UI differ in terms of data format support, user interface, testing and mocking capabilities, code generation capabilities, integration and ecosystem, as well as pricing and licensing. Each platform has its own strengths and weaknesses, so the choice depends on the specific requirements and preferences of the users.

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From a StackShare Community member: "I just started working for a start-up and we are in desperate need of better documentation for our API. Currently our API docs is in a README.md file. We are evaluating Postman and Swagger UI. Since there are many options and I was wondering what other StackSharers would recommend?"

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Replies (3)
Jagdeep Singh
Tech Lead at ucreate.it · | 8 upvotes · 384.8K views

I use Postman because of the ease of team-management, using workspaces and teams, runner, collections, environment variables, test-scripts (post execution), variable management (pre and post execution), folders (inside collections, for better management of APIs), newman, easy-ci-integration (and probably a few more things that I am not able to recall right now).

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I use Swagger UI because it's an easy tool for end-consumers to visualize and test our APIs. It focuses on that ! And it's directly embedded and delivered with the APIs. Postman's built-in tools aren't bad, but their main focus isn't the documentation and also, they are hosted outside the project.

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Sadik Ay
Recommends
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I recommend Postman because it's easy to use with history option. Also, it has very great features like runner, collections, test scripts runners, defining environment variables and simple exporting and importing data.

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Pros of Apiary
Pros of Swagger UI
  • 29
    Easy to use
  • 19
    Free to use
  • 12
    Traffic inspector
  • 11
    Free
  • 10
    Collaboration
  • 7
    Mock API
  • 4
    Dashboard
  • 3
    Customization
  • 2
    30 Days Trial
  • 2
    Access Control
  • 2
    Documentation
  • 2
    Validate API Documentation
  • 1
    API explorer
  • 1
    Clean syntax
  • 1
    Provisioning
  • 1
    Shared API blueprint templates
  • 1
    Github integration helps with collaboration
  • 1
    Code auto-generation
  • 49
    Open Source
  • 34
    Can execute api calls from the documentation
  • 29
    Free to use
  • 19
    Customizable
  • 14
    Easy to implement in .Net
  • 13
    Mature, clean spec
  • 12
    API Visualization
  • 9
    Coverage
  • 6
    Scaffolding
  • 6
    Easy to use
  • 5
    Vibrant and active community
  • 4
    Elegant
  • 3
    Adopted by tm forum api
  • 2
    Clear for React
  • 1
    Api
  • 1
    Can deploy API to AWS API Gateway and AWS Lambda

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Cons of Apiary
Cons of Swagger UI
    Be the first to leave a con
    • 3
      Need to learn YAML and RAML
    • 2
      Documentation doesn't look that good
    • 1
      Doesn't generate code snippets in different languages
    • 1
      You don’t actually get in-line error highlighting
    • 1
      Does not support hypermedia

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