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This version of GitHub Enterprise was discontinued on 2022-06-03. No patch releases will be made, even for critical security issues. For better performance, improved security, and new features, upgrade to the latest version of GitHub Enterprise. For help with the upgrade, contact GitHub Enterprise support.

Resources in the REST API

Learn how to navigate the resources provided by the GitHub Enterprise Server API.

This describes the resources that make up the official GitHub Enterprise Server REST API. If you have any problems or requests, please contact your site administrator.

Current version

By default, all requests to http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3 receive the v3 version of the REST API. We encourage you to explicitly request this version via the Accept header.

Accept: application/vnd.github.v3+json


The API is accessed from http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3. All data is sent and received as JSON.

$ curl -I http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3/users/octocat/orgs

> HTTP/2 200
> Server: nginx
> Date: Fri, 12 Oct 2012 23:33:14 GMT
> Content-Type: application/json; charset=utf-8
> ETag: "a00049ba79152d03380c34652f2cb612"
> X-GitHub-Media-Type: github.v3
> x-ratelimit-limit: 5000
> x-ratelimit-remaining: 4987
> x-ratelimit-reset: 1350085394
> X-GitHub-Enterprise-Version: 3.1.0
> Content-Length: 5
> Cache-Control: max-age=0, private, must-revalidate
> X-Content-Type-Options: nosniff

Blank fields are included as null instead of being omitted.

All timestamps return in UTC time, ISO 8601 format:


For more information about timezones in timestamps, see this section.

Summary representations

When you fetch a list of resources, the response includes a subset of the attributes for that resource. This is the "summary" representation of the resource. (Some attributes are computationally expensive for the API to provide. For performance reasons, the summary representation excludes those attributes. To obtain those attributes, fetch the "detailed" representation.)

Example: When you get a list of repositories, you get the summary representation of each repository. Here, we fetch the list of repositories owned by the octokit organization:

GET /orgs/octokit/repos

Detailed representations

When you fetch an individual resource, the response typically includes all attributes for that resource. This is the "detailed" representation of the resource. (Note that authorization sometimes influences the amount of detail included in the representation.)

Example: When you get an individual repository, you get the detailed representation of the repository. Here, we fetch the octokit/octokit.rb repository:

GET /repos/octokit/octokit.rb

The documentation provides an example response for each API method. The example response illustrates all attributes that are returned by that method.


There are two ways to authenticate through GitHub Enterprise Server REST API. Requests that require authentication will return 404 Not Found, instead of 403 Forbidden, in some places. This is to prevent the accidental leakage of private repositories to unauthorized users.

Basic authentication

$ curl -u "username" http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3

OAuth2 token (sent in a header)

$ curl -H "Authorization: token OAUTH-TOKEN" http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3

Note: GitHub recommends sending OAuth tokens using the Authorization header.

Read more about OAuth2. Note that OAuth2 tokens can be acquired using the web application flow for production applications.

OAuth2 key/secret

Deprecation Notice: GitHub will discontinue authentication to the API using query parameters. Authenticating to the API should be done with HTTP basic authentication. For more information, including scheduled brownouts, see the blog post.

Authentication to the API using query parameters while available is no longer supported due to security concerns. Instead we recommend integrators move their access token, client_id, or client_secret in the header. GitHub will announce the removal of authentication by query parameters with advanced notice.

curl -u my_client_id:my_client_secret 'http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3/user/repos'

Using your client_id and client_secret does not authenticate as a user, it will only identify your OAuth App to increase your rate limit. Permissions are only granted to users, not applications, and you will only get back data that an unauthenticated user would see. For this reason, you should only use the OAuth2 key/secret in server-to-server scenarios. Don't leak your OAuth App's client secret to your users.

You will be unable to authenticate using your OAuth2 key and secret while in private mode, and trying to authenticate will return 401 Unauthorized. For more information, see "Enabling private mode".

Failed login limit

Authenticating with invalid credentials will return 401 Unauthorized:

$ curl -I http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3 -u foo:bar
> HTTP/2 401

> {
>   "message": "Bad credentials",
>   "documentation_url": ""
> }

After detecting several requests with invalid credentials within a short period, the API will temporarily reject all authentication attempts for that user (including ones with valid credentials) with 403 Forbidden:

$ curl -i http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3 -u -u valid_username:valid_password 
> HTTP/2 403
> {
>   "message": "Maximum number of login attempts exceeded. Please try again later.",
>   "documentation_url": ""
> }


Many API methods take optional parameters. For GET requests, any parameters not specified as a segment in the path can be passed as an HTTP query string parameter:

$ curl -i "http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3/repos/vmg/redcarpet/issues?state=closed"

In this example, the 'vmg' and 'redcarpet' values are provided for the :owner and :repo parameters in the path while :state is passed in the query string.

For POST, PATCH, PUT, and DELETE requests, parameters not included in the URL should be encoded as JSON with a Content-Type of 'application/json':

$ curl -i -u username -d '{"scopes":["repo_deployment"]}' http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3/authorizations

Root endpoint

You can issue a GET request to the root endpoint to get all the endpoint categories that the REST API supports:

$ curl -u username:password http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3

GraphQL global node IDs

See the guide on "Using Global Node IDs" for detailed information about how to find node_ids via the REST API and use them in GraphQL operations.

Client errors

There are three possible types of client errors on API calls that receive request bodies:

  1. Sending invalid JSON will result in a 400 Bad Request response.

    HTTP/2 400
    Content-Length: 35
    {"message":"Problems parsing JSON"}
  2. Sending the wrong type of JSON values will result in a 400 Bad Request response.

     HTTP/2 400
     Content-Length: 40
     {"message":"Body should be a JSON object"}
  3. Sending invalid fields will result in a 422 Unprocessable Entity response.

     HTTP/2 422
     Content-Length: 149
       "message": "Validation Failed",
       "errors": [
           "resource": "Issue",
           "field": "title",
           "code": "missing_field"

All error objects have resource and field properties so that your client can tell what the problem is. There's also an error code to let you know what is wrong with the field. These are the possible validation error codes:

Error code nameDescription
missingA resource does not exist.
missing_fieldA required field on a resource has not been set.
invalidThe formatting of a field is invalid. Review the documentation for more specific information.
already_existsAnother resource has the same value as this field. This can happen in resources that must have some unique key (such as label names).
unprocessableThe inputs provided were invalid.

Resources may also send custom validation errors (where code is custom). Custom errors will always have a message field describing the error, and most errors will also include a documentation_url field pointing to some content that might help you resolve the error.

HTTP redirects

API v3 uses HTTP redirection where appropriate. Clients should assume that any request may result in a redirection. Receiving an HTTP redirection is not an error and clients should follow that redirect. Redirect responses will have a Location header field which contains the URI of the resource to which the client should repeat the requests.

Status CodeDescription
301Permanent redirection. The URI you used to make the request has been superseded by the one specified in the Location header field. This and all future requests to this resource should be directed to the new URI.
302, 307Temporary redirection. The request should be repeated verbatim to the URI specified in the Location header field but clients should continue to use the original URI for future requests.

Other redirection status codes may be used in accordance with the HTTP 1.1 spec.

HTTP verbs

Where possible, API v3 strives to use appropriate HTTP verbs for each action.

HEADCan be issued against any resource to get just the HTTP header info.
GETUsed for retrieving resources.
POSTUsed for creating resources.
PATCHUsed for updating resources with partial JSON data. For instance, an Issue resource has title and body attributes. A PATCH request may accept one or more of the attributes to update the resource.
PUTUsed for replacing resources or collections. For PUT requests with no body attribute, be sure to set the Content-Length header to zero.
DELETEUsed for deleting resources.


All resources may have one or more *_url properties linking to other resources. These are meant to provide explicit URLs so that proper API clients don't need to construct URLs on their own. It is highly recommended that API clients use these. Doing so will make future upgrades of the API easier for developers. All URLs are expected to be proper RFC 6570 URI templates.

You can then expand these templates using something like the uri_template gem:

>> tmpl ='/notifications{?since,all,participating}')
>> tmpl.expand
=> "/notifications"

>> tmpl.expand :all => 1
=> "/notifications?all=1"

>> tmpl.expand :all => 1, :participating => 1
=> "/notifications?all=1&participating=1"


Requests that return multiple items will be paginated to 30 items by default. You can specify further pages with the page parameter. For some resources, you can also set a custom page size up to 100 with the per_page parameter. Note that for technical reasons not all endpoints respect the per_page parameter, see events for example.

$ curl 'http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3/user/repos?page=2&per_page=100'

Note that page numbering is 1-based and that omitting the page parameter will return the first page.

Some endpoints use cursor-based pagination. A cursor is a string that points to a location in the result set. With cursor-based pagination, there is no fixed concept of "pages" in the result set, so you can't navigate to a specific page. Instead, you can traverse the results by using the before or after parameters.

For more information on pagination, check out our guide on Traversing with Pagination.

Note: It's important to form calls with Link header values instead of constructing your own URLs.

The Link header includes pagination information. For example:

Link: <http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3/user/repos?page=3&per_page=100>; rel="next",
  <http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3/user/repos?page=50&per_page=100>; rel="last"

The example includes a line break for readability.

Or, if the endpoint uses cursor-based pagination:

Link: <http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3/orgs/ORG/audit-log?after=MTYwMTkxOTU5NjQxM3xZbGI4VE5EZ1dvZTlla09uWjhoZFpR&before=>; rel="next",

This Link response header contains one or more Hypermedia link relations, some of which may require expansion as URI templates.

The possible rel values are:

nextThe link relation for the immediate next page of results.
lastThe link relation for the last page of results.
firstThe link relation for the first page of results.
prevThe link relation for the immediate previous page of results.

Rate limiting

Different types of API requests to your GitHub Enterprise Server instance are subject to different rate limits.

Additionally, the Search API has dedicated limits. For more information, see "Search" in the REST API documentation.

Note: The following rate limits are the default rate limits for GitHub Enterprise Server. Contact your site administrator to confirm the rate limits for your GitHub Enterprise Server instance.

Note: You can confirm your current rate limit status at any time. For more information, see "Checking your rate limit status."

Requests from personal accounts

Direct API requests that you authenticate with a personal access token are user-to-server requests. An OAuth App or GitHub App can also make a user-to-server request on your behalf after you authorize the app. For more information, see "Creating a personal access token," "Authorizing OAuth Apps," and "Authorizing GitHub Apps."

GitHub Enterprise Server associates all user-to-server requests with the authenticated user. For OAuth Apps and GitHub Apps, this is the user who authorized the app. All user-to-server requests count toward the authenticated user's rate limit.

By default, user-to-server requests are limited to 5,000 requests per hour and per authenticated user. All requests from OAuth applications authorized by a user or a personal access token owned by the user, and requests authenticated with any of the user's authentication credentials, share the same quota of 5,000 requests per hour for that user.

Requests from GitHub Apps

Requests from a GitHub App may be either user-to-server or server-to-server requests. For more information about rate limits for GitHub Apps, see "Rate limits for GitHub Apps."

Requests from GitHub Actions

You can use the built-in GITHUB_TOKEN to authenticate requests in GitHub Actions workflows. For more information, see "Automatic token authentication."

When using GITHUB_TOKEN, the rate limit is 1,000 requests per hour per repository.

Checking your rate limit status

The Rate Limit API and a response's HTTP headers are authoritative sources for the current number of API calls available to you or your app at any given time.

Rate Limit API

You can use the Rate Limit API to check your rate limit status without incurring a hit to the current limit. For more information, see "Rate limit."

Rate limit HTTP headers

The returned HTTP headers of any API request show your current rate limit status:

$ curl -I http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3/users/octocat
> HTTP/2 200
> Date: Mon, 01 Jul 2013 17:27:06 GMT
> x-ratelimit-limit: 60
> x-ratelimit-remaining: 56
> x-ratelimit-reset: 1372700873
Header NameDescription
x-ratelimit-limitThe maximum number of requests you're permitted to make per hour.
x-ratelimit-remainingThe number of requests remaining in the current rate limit window.
x-ratelimit-resetThe time at which the current rate limit window resets in UTC epoch seconds.

If you need the time in a different format, any modern programming language can get the job done. For example, if you open up the console on your web browser, you can easily get the reset time as a JavaScript Date object.

new Date(1372700873 * 1000)
// => Mon Jul 01 2013 13:47:53 GMT-0400 (EDT)

If you exceed the rate limit, an error response returns:

> HTTP/2 403
> Date: Tue, 20 Aug 2013 14:50:41 GMT
> x-ratelimit-limit: 60
> x-ratelimit-remaining: 0
> x-ratelimit-reset: 1377013266

> {
>    "message": "API rate limit exceeded for (But here's the good news: Authenticated requests get a higher rate limit. Check out the documentation for more details.)",
>    "documentation_url": ""
> }

Increasing the unauthenticated rate limit for OAuth Apps

If your OAuth App needs to make unauthenticated calls with a higher rate limit, you can pass your app's client ID and secret before the endpoint route.

$ curl -u my_client_id:my_client_secret -I http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3/user/repos
> HTTP/2 200
> Date: Mon, 01 Jul 2013 17:27:06 GMT
> x-ratelimit-limit: 5000
> x-ratelimit-remaining: 4966
> x-ratelimit-reset: 1372700873

Note: Never share your client secret with anyone or include it in client-side browser code. Use the method shown here only for server-to-server calls.

Staying within the rate limit

If you exceed your rate limit using Basic Authentication or OAuth, you can likely fix the issue by caching API responses and using conditional requests.

Secondary rate limits

In order to provide quality service on GitHub Enterprise Server, additional rate limits may apply to some actions when using the API. For example, using the API to rapidly create content, poll aggressively instead of using webhooks, make multiple concurrent requests, or repeatedly request data that is computationally expensive may result in secondary rate limiting.

Secondary rate limits are not intended to interfere with legitimate use of the API. Your normal rate limits should be the only limit you target. To ensure you're acting as a good API citizen, check out our Best Practices guidelines.

If your application triggers this rate limit, you'll receive an informative response:

> HTTP/2 403
> Content-Type: application/json; charset=utf-8
> Connection: close

> {
>   "message": "You have exceeded a secondary rate limit and have been temporarily blocked from content creation. Please retry your request again later.",
>   "documentation_url": ""
> }

Conditional requests

Most responses return an ETag header. Many responses also return a Last-Modified header. You can use the values of these headers to make subsequent requests to those resources using the If-None-Match and If-Modified-Since headers, respectively. If the resource has not changed, the server will return a 304 Not Modified.

$ curl -I http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3/user
> HTTP/2 200
> Cache-Control: private, max-age=60
> ETag: "644b5b0155e6404a9cc4bd9d8b1ae730"
> Last-Modified: Thu, 05 Jul 2012 15:31:30 GMT
> Vary: Accept, Authorization, Cookie
> x-ratelimit-limit: 5000
> x-ratelimit-remaining: 4996
> x-ratelimit-reset: 1372700873

$ curl -I http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3/user -H 'If-None-Match: "644b5b0155e6404a9cc4bd9d8b1ae730"'
> HTTP/2 304
> Cache-Control: private, max-age=60
> ETag: "644b5b0155e6404a9cc4bd9d8b1ae730"
> Last-Modified: Thu, 05 Jul 2012 15:31:30 GMT
> Vary: Accept, Authorization, Cookie
> x-ratelimit-limit: 5000
> x-ratelimit-remaining: 4996
> x-ratelimit-reset: 1372700873

$ curl -I http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3/user -H "If-Modified-Since: Thu, 05 Jul 2012 15:31:30 GMT"
> HTTP/2 304
> Cache-Control: private, max-age=60
> Last-Modified: Thu, 05 Jul 2012 15:31:30 GMT
> Vary: Accept, Authorization, Cookie
> x-ratelimit-limit: 5000
> x-ratelimit-remaining: 4996
> x-ratelimit-reset: 1372700873

Cross origin resource sharing

The API supports Cross Origin Resource Sharing (CORS) for AJAX requests from any origin. You can read the CORS W3C Recommendation, or this intro from the HTML 5 Security Guide.

Here's a sample request sent from a browser hitting

$ curl -I http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3 -H "Origin:"
HTTP/2 302
Access-Control-Allow-Origin: *
Access-Control-Expose-Headers: ETag, Link, X-GitHub-OTP, x-ratelimit-limit, x-ratelimit-remaining, x-ratelimit-reset, X-OAuth-Scopes, X-Accepted-OAuth-Scopes, X-Poll-Interval

This is what the CORS preflight request looks like:

$ curl -I http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3 -H "Origin:" -X OPTIONS
HTTP/2 204
Access-Control-Allow-Origin: *
Access-Control-Allow-Headers: Authorization, Content-Type, If-Match, If-Modified-Since, If-None-Match, If-Unmodified-Since, X-GitHub-OTP, X-Requested-With
Access-Control-Allow-Methods: GET, POST, PATCH, PUT, DELETE
Access-Control-Expose-Headers: ETag, Link, X-GitHub-OTP, x-ratelimit-limit, x-ratelimit-remaining, x-ratelimit-reset, X-OAuth-Scopes, X-Accepted-OAuth-Scopes, X-Poll-Interval
Access-Control-Max-Age: 86400

JSON-P callbacks

You can send a ?callback parameter to any GET call to have the results wrapped in a JSON function. This is typically used when browsers want to embed GitHub Enterprise Server content in web pages by getting around cross domain issues. The response includes the same data output as the regular API, plus the relevant HTTP Header information.

$ curl http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3?callback=foo

> /**/foo({
>   "meta": {
>     "status": 200,
>     "x-ratelimit-limit": "5000",
>     "x-ratelimit-remaining": "4966",
>     "x-ratelimit-reset": "1372700873",
>     "Link": [ // pagination headers and other links
>       ["http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3?page=2", {"rel": "next"}]
>     ]
>   },
>   "data": {
>     // the data
>   }
> })

You can write a JavaScript handler to process the callback. Here's a minimal example you can try out:

<script type="text/javascript">
function foo(response) {
  var meta = response.meta;
  var data =;

var script = document.createElement('script');
script.src = 'http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3?callback=foo';


  <p>Open up your browser's console.</p>

All of the headers are the same String value as the HTTP Headers with one notable exception: Link. Link headers are pre-parsed for you and come through as an array of [url, options] tuples.

A link that looks like this:

Link: <url1>; rel="next", <url2>; rel="foo"; bar="baz"

... will look like this in the Callback output:

  "Link": [
        "rel": "next"
        "rel": "foo",
        "bar": "baz"


Some requests that create new data, such as creating a new commit, allow you to provide time zone information when specifying or generating timestamps. We apply the following rules, in order of priority, to determine timezone information for such API calls.

Note that these rules apply only to data passed to the API, not to data returned by the API. As mentioned in "Schema," timestamps returned by the API are in UTC time, ISO 8601 format.

Explicitly providing an ISO 8601 timestamp with timezone information

For API calls that allow for a timestamp to be specified, we use that exact timestamp. An example of this is the Commits API.

These timestamps look something like 2014-02-27T15:05:06+01:00. Also see this example for how these timestamps can be specified.

Using the Time-Zone header

It is possible to supply a Time-Zone header which defines a timezone according to the list of names from the Olson database.

$ curl -H "Time-Zone: Europe/Amsterdam" -X POST http(s)://[hostname]/api/v3/repos/github/linguist/contents/

This means that we generate a timestamp for the moment your API call is made in the timezone this header defines. For example, the Contents API generates a git commit for each addition or change and uses the current time as the timestamp. This header will determine the timezone used for generating that current timestamp.

Using the last known timezone for the user

If no Time-Zone header is specified and you make an authenticated call to the API, we use the last known timezone for the authenticated user. The last known timezone is updated whenever you browse the GitHub Enterprise Server website.

Defaulting to UTC without other timezone information

If the steps above don't result in any information, we use UTC as the timezone to create the git commit.