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Postman vs Swagger UI: What are the differences?

Postman and Swagger UI are widely used tools in API development and testing. Postman provides a comprehensive API development environment, while Swagger UI focuses on API documentation and visualization.

  1. User Interface: Postman provides a user-friendly interface with a wide range of features, including request creation, response visualization, and test automation capabilities. It offers a graphical interface that simplifies the creation, sending, and management of API requests. In contrast, Swagger UI primarily focuses on API documentation, offering an interactive and visually appealing interface for exploring and testing APIs.

  2. Request Building and Testing: Postman offers a robust set of features for creating and sending API requests. It provides a variety of request methods, authentication options, and parameter customization. Postman also allows for automated testing and the creation of test scripts. Swagger UI, on the other hand, is primarily focused on API documentation and visualization, providing a read-only interface for exploring and interacting with APIs.

  3. API Documentation: Swagger UI is a dedicated tool for API documentation, using the OpenAPI Specification (OAS) to document RESTful APIs in a standardized format. It simplifies the process by automatically generating documentation from the API definition, facilitating sharing and maintenance of API documentation. On the other hand, Postman, while having some documentation capabilities, is not as focused on this aspect as Swagger UI.

  4. Collaboration and Teamwork: Postman provides collaboration features, allowing team members to work together on API development, testing, and documentation. It offers features like shared workspaces, version control, and team collaboration tools. Swagger UI, on the other hand, focuses more on individual API documentation and visualization and may require additional tools or platforms for collaboration among team members.

  5. Ecosystem and Integrations: Postman has a thriving ecosystem with a wide range of integrations and extensions, making it a versatile tool for API development and testing. It integrates with popular development tools, source control systems, and continuous integration/continuous delivery (CI/CD) pipelines. Swagger UI, while it offers some integrations, has a more limited ecosystem compared to Postman.

In summary, Postman is a comprehensive API development environment with a user-friendly interface, robust testing capabilities, and extensive collaboration features. It excels in request building, automation, and team collaboration. Swagger UI, on the other hand, is primarily focused on API documentation and visualization, providing a visually appealing interface for exploring and sharing API documentation based on the OpenAPI Specification. It is well-suited for generating interactive API documentation but lacks the extensive testing and collaboration features of Postman.

Advice on Postman and Swagger UI
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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 路 352.2K 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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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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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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Decisions about Postman and Swagger UI
Stephen Fox
Artificial Intelligence Fellow | 1 upvote 路 312.1K 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.

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Pros of Postman
Pros of Swagger UI
  • 489
    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
    History feature
  • 53
    It's the best
  • 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
    Global/Environment Variables
  • 8
    Collections
  • 8
    Option to run scrips
  • 7
    Shareable Collections
  • 7
    Dead simple and useful. Excellent
  • 7
    Dark theme easy on the eyes
  • 6
    Great integration with newman
  • 6
    Awesome customer support
  • 5
    Simple
  • 5
    The test script is useful
  • 5
    Documentation
  • 4
    Saves responses
  • 4
    Easy as pie
  • 4
    Makes testing API's as easy as 1,2,3
  • 4
    This has simplified my testing significantly
  • 3
    API-network
  • 3
    Mocking API calls with predefined response
  • 3
    I'd recommend it to everyone who works with apis
  • 2
    Runner
  • 2
    Easy to setup, test and provides test storage
  • 2
    Postman Runner CI Integration
  • 2
    Graph
  • 2
    Now supports GraphQL
  • 2
    Continuous integration using newman
  • 2
    Pre-request Script and Test attributes are invaluable
  • 1
    <a href="http://fixbit.com/">useful tool</a>
  • 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 Postman
Cons of Swagger UI
  • 10
    Stores credentials in HTTP
  • 9
    Bloated features and UI
  • 8
    Cumbersome to switch authentication tokens
  • 7
    Poor GraphQL support
  • 5
    Expensive
  • 3
    Not free after 5 users
  • 3
    Can't prompt for per-request variables
  • 1
    Import swagger
  • 1
    Support websocket
  • 1
    Import curl
  • 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鈥檛 actually get in-line error highlighting
  • 1
    Does not support hypermedia

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What is Postman?

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

What is Swagger UI?

Swagger UI is a dependency-free collection of HTML, Javascript, and CSS assets that dynamically generate beautiful documentation and sandbox from a Swagger-compliant API

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What companies use Postman?
What companies use Swagger UI?
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What are some alternatives to Postman and Swagger UI?
Insomnia REST Client
Insomnia is a powerful REST API Client with cookie management, environment variables, code generation, and authentication for Mac, Window, and Linux.
Paw
Paw is a full-featured and beautifully designed Mac app that makes interaction with REST services delightful. Either you are an API maker or consumer, Paw helps you build HTTP requests, inspect the server's response and even generate client code.
Apigee
API management, design, analytics, and security are at the heart of modern digital architecture. The Apigee intelligent API platform is a complete solution for moving business to the digital world.
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.
Fiddler
It is a free web debugging proxy for any browser, system or platform. It helps you debug web applications by capturing network traffic between the Internet and test computers. The tool enables you to inspect incoming and outgoing data to monitor and modify requests and responses before the browser receives them.
See all alternatives