Need advice about which tool to choose?Ask the StackShare community!


+ 1

+ 1
Add tool

cURL vs Postman: What are the differences?

cURL is a command-line tool used for transferring data using various protocols. On the other hand, Postman is a user-friendly tool to test and interact with APIs. Let's explore the key differences between Postman and cURL:

  1. User Interface and Interaction: Postman offers a user-friendly graphical interface to easily build, send, and manage API requests. It provides a visual representation of the requests and responses, making it easy to inspect and analyze the data. On the other hand, cURL is a command-line tool that operates through a terminal or command prompt. It requires users to construct and execute requests using command-line parameters and syntax, which may have a steeper learning curve for beginners. cURL's command-line interface offers flexibility and power, but it lacks visual feedback and convenience.

  2. Request Configuration and Flexibility: Postman provides a comprehensive set of tools for configuring API requests. It allows users to easily set headers, query parameters, request bodies, and authentication credentials through its intuitive interface. Postman also supports dynamic variables and environment settings. cURL, on the other hand, requires users to construct requests manually using command-line options and flags. While cURL provides extensive control and flexibility over the request configuration, it may be less user-friendly for complex request setups and may require more manual effort.

  3. Additional Features and Integration: Postman includes features like automated testing, scripting, mocking, and documentation generation. Postman also has a rich ecosystem with integrations for source control, CI/CD pipelines, and other tools commonly used in API development. cURL, on the other hand, focuses solely on making HTTP requests and lacks the built-in features and integrations provided by Postman. However, cURL can be easily integrated into various scripting and automation workflows, making it a preferred choice for command-line and scripting-based scenarios.

  4. Learning Curve and Accessibility: Postman is designed to be accessible to both beginners and experienced developers. Its intuitive user interface makes it easy to get started and work with APIs. Postman also provides extensive documentation and resources to help users understand and utilize its features effectively. cURL, on the other hand, may have a steeper learning curve, especially for users who are not familiar with command-line interfaces or the intricacies of constructing HTTP requests using command-line options.

In summary, Postman provides a user-friendly, graphical interface with a wide range of features and integrations, making it suitable for both beginners and experienced developers. cURL, on the other hand, is a command-line tool that provides flexibility and control over request construction but requires more manual effort and may be more suitable for users comfortable with command-line interfaces.

Advice on cURL and Postman
Needs advice
Swagger UISwagger UI

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 file. We are evaluating Postman and Swagger UI. Since there are many options and I was wondering what other StackSharers would recommend?"

See more
Replies (3)
Jagdeep Singh
Tech Lead at · | 8 upvotes · 381.6K 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).

See more

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.

See more
Sadik Ay

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.

See more
Decisions about cURL and Postman
Stephen Fox
Artificial Intelligence Fellow · | 1 upvote · 337.2K views

Postman supports automation and organization in a way that Insomnia just doesn't. Admittedly, Insomnia makes it slightly easy to query the data that you get back (in a very MongoDB-esque query language) but Postman sets you up to develop the code that you would use in development/testing right in the editor.

See more
Get Advice from developers at your company using StackShare Enterprise. Sign up for StackShare Enterprise.
Learn More
Pros of cURL
Pros of Postman
  • 1
    Quickly view HTTP headers
  • 490
    Easy to use
  • 369
    Great tool
  • 276
    Makes developing rest api's easy peasy
  • 156
    Easy setup, looks good
  • 144
    The best api workflow out there
  • 53
    It's the best
  • 53
    History feature
  • 44
    Adds real value to my workflow
  • 43
    Great interface that magically predicts your needs
  • 35
    The best in class app
  • 12
    Can save and share script
  • 10
    Fully featured without looking cluttered
  • 8
  • 8
    Option to run scrips
  • 8
    Global/Environment Variables
  • 7
    Shareable Collections
  • 7
    Dead simple and useful. Excellent
  • 7
    Dark theme easy on the eyes
  • 6
    Awesome customer support
  • 6
    Great integration with newman
  • 5
  • 5
  • 5
    The test script is useful
  • 4
    Saves responses
  • 4
    This has simplified my testing significantly
  • 4
    Makes testing API's as easy as 1,2,3
  • 4
    Easy as pie
  • 3
  • 3
    I'd recommend it to everyone who works with apis
  • 3
    Mocking API calls with predefined response
  • 2
    Now supports GraphQL
  • 2
    Postman Runner CI Integration
  • 2
    Easy to setup, test and provides test storage
  • 2
    Continuous integration using newman
  • 2
    Pre-request Script and Test attributes are invaluable
  • 2
  • 2
  • 1
    <a href="">useful tool</a>

Sign up to add or upvote prosMake informed product decisions

Cons of cURL
Cons of Postman
    Be the first to leave a con
    • 10
      Stores credentials in HTTP
    • 9
      Bloated features and UI
    • 8
      Cumbersome to switch authentication tokens
    • 7
      Poor GraphQL support
    • 5
    • 3
      Not free after 5 users
    • 3
      Can't prompt for per-request variables
    • 1
      Import swagger
    • 1
      Support websocket
    • 1
      Import curl

    Sign up to add or upvote consMake informed product decisions

    - No public GitHub repository available -

    What is cURL?

    Used in command lines or scripts to transfer data. It is also used in cars, television sets, routers, printers, audio equipment, mobile phones, tablets, and is the internet transfer backbone for thousands of software applications affecting billions of humans daily.

    What is Postman?

    It is the only complete API development environment, used by nearly five million developers and more than 100,000 companies worldwide.

    Need advice about which tool to choose?Ask the StackShare community!

    What companies use cURL?
    What companies use Postman?
    See which teams inside your own company are using cURL or Postman.
    Sign up for StackShare EnterpriseLearn More

    Sign up to get full access to all the companiesMake informed product decisions

    What tools integrate with cURL?
    What tools integrate with Postman?

    Sign up to get full access to all the tool integrationsMake informed product decisions

    What are some alternatives to cURL and Postman?
    It is a Modern command line HTTP client – user-friendly curl alternative with intuitive UI, JSON support, syntax highlighting, wget-like downloads, extensions, etc
    JavaScript is most known as the scripting language for Web pages, but used in many non-browser environments as well such as node.js or Apache CouchDB. It is a prototype-based, multi-paradigm scripting language that is dynamic,and supports object-oriented, imperative, and functional programming styles.
    Git is a free and open source distributed version control system designed to handle everything from small to very large projects with speed and efficiency.
    GitHub is the best place to share code with friends, co-workers, classmates, and complete strangers. Over three million people use GitHub to build amazing things together.
    Python is a general purpose programming language created by Guido Van Rossum. Python is most praised for its elegant syntax and readable code, if you are just beginning your programming career python suits you best.
    See all alternatives