⚠️ Alpha feature

This is an alpha feature that may change significantly in the coming months - do not use this feature in a production environment. The fully up-to-date README is available here (opens new window). This page is only here to explain how it works, it's not intended to be used as an accurate guide.

We originally developed our existing API to be used between the Web UI xo-web and the server backend, xo-server. That's why it's a JSON-RPC API connected via websockets, allowing us to update objects live in the browser. This is perfect for our usage, but a bit complicated for others.

Also, this API wasn't meant to be public, but over the years some users have expressed a desire to be able to use it for their own purposes. This led us to add more tooling around it, like xo-cli and to answer specific requests.

For these reasons we decided to build a new API. Not an evolution of the current one, but 100% new. It is meant to be public and REST-like (opens new window). So a simple curl command can request it. We will also provide documentation as the intended goal is for it to be used by the public.

# Authentication

A valid authentication token should be attached as a cookie to all HTTP requests:

GET /rest/v0 HTTP/1.1
Cookie: authenticationToken=TN2YBOMYtXB_hHtf4wTzm9p5tTuqq2i15yeuhcz2xXM

The server will respond to an invalid token with a 401 Unauthorized status.

[Not implemented at this time] The server can request that the client updates its token with a Set-Cookie header:

HTTP/1.1 200 OK
Set-Cookie: authenticationToken=KQxQdm2vMiv7jBIK0hgkmgxKzemd8wSJ7ugFGKFkTbs

Usage with cURL:

curl -b \
    authenticationToken=KQxQdm2vMiv7jBIK0hgkmgxKzemd8wSJ7ugFGKFkTbs \

You can use xo-cli to create an authentication token:

$ xo-cli --createToken xoa.company.lan admin@admin.net
Password: ********
Successfully logged with admin@admin.net
Authentication token created



Only admin users can currently use the API.

# Collections request

Collections of objects are available at /<name> (e.g. /vms)

The following query parameters are supported:

  • limit: max number of objects returned
  • fields: if specified, instead of plain URLs, the results will be objects containing the requested fields
  • filter: a string that will be used to select only matching objects, see the syntax documentation
  • ndjson: if specified, the result will be in NDJSON format (opens new window)

Simple request:

GET /rest/v0/vms HTTP/1.1
Cookie: authenticationToken=TN2YBOMYtXB_hHtf4wTzm9p5tTuqq2i15yeuhcz2xXM

HTTP/1.1 200 OK
Content-Type: application/json


Here is an example with curl:

curl \
    -b authenticationToken=0OQIKwb1WjeHtch25Ls \
    "name_label": "FreeNAS",
    "power_state": "Running",
    "href": "/rest/v0/vms/0fc14abc-ae7a-4209-79c4-d20ca1f0e567"
    "name_label": "Ubuntu 20.04 test",
    "power_state": "Halted",
    "href": "/rest/v0/vms/d505eb99-164e-5516-27e1-43837a01be45"
    "name_label": "Rocky Linux 8",
    "power_state": "Halted",
    "href": "/rest/v0/vms/38f423b7-1498-ee8c-ca8d-d3bb8fcffcf2"
    "name_label": "XOA 🎷",
    "power_state": "Running",
    "href": "/rest/v0/vms/857e34e5-c61a-f3f1-65e6-a7a9306b347b"


GET /rest/v0/vms?fields=name_label,power_state&ndjson HTTP/1.1
Cookie: authenticationToken=TN2YBOMYtXB_hHtf4wTzm9p5tTuqq2i15yeuhcz2xXM

HTTP/1.1 200 OK
Content-Type: application/x-ndjson

{"name_label":"Debian 10 Cloudinit","power_state":"Running","url":"/rest/v0/vms/770aa52a-fd42-8faf-f167-8c5c4a237cac"}
{"name_label":"Debian 10 Cloudinit self-service","power_state":"Halted","url":"/rest/v0/vms/5019156b-f40d-bc57-835b-4a259b177be1"}

# VM and VDI export

VDI export and VM export are supported by the API. Below is a simple example to export a VM with zstd compression into a myVM.xva file:

curl \
  -b authenticationToken=KQxQdm2vMiv7jFEAZXOAGKFkTbs \
  'https://xoa.example.org/rest/v0/vms/770aa52a-fd42-8faf-f167-8c5c4a237a12.xva?compress=zstd' \
  > myVM.xva

For a VHD export, it's very similar:

curl \
  -b authenticationToken=KQxQdm2vMiv7FkTbs \
  'https://xoa.example.org/rest/v0/vdis/1a269782-ea93-4c4c-897a-475365f7b674.vhd' \
  > myDisk.vhd

# VDI Import

A VHD or a raw export can be imported on an SR to create a new VDI at /rest/v0/srs/<sr uuid>/vdis.

curl \
  -X POST \
  -b authenticationToken=KQxQdm2vMiv7jBIK0hgkmgxKzemd8wSJ7ugFGKFkTbs \
  -T myDisk.raw \
  'https://xo.example.org/rest/v0/srs/357bd56c-71f9-4b2a-83b8-3451dec04b8f/vdis?raw&name_label=my_imported_VDI' \
  | cat

Note: the final | cat ensures cURL's standard output is not a TTY, which is necessary for upload stats to be dislayed.

This request returns the UUID of the created VDI.

The following query parameters are supported to customize the created VDI:

  • name_label
  • name_description
  • raw: this parameter must be used if importing a raw export instead of a VHD

# The future

We are adding features and improving the REST API step by step. If you have interesting use cases or feedback, please ask directly at https://xcp-ng.org/forum/category/12/xen-orchestra (opens new window)