Zimbra REST API Reference

Zimbra exposes its data via a REST API. This document is the reference for that functionality.

REST (REpresentational State Transfer) is an approach for building application services that make resources available via a URL. For example, the following REST command retrieves all inbox items as a simple RSS feed:


Learn more about REST at the Wikipedia article Representational State Transfer.


Command Format

The format of a Zimbra REST command is:


HTTP GET methods are for reading items. HTTP POST methods are for creating/modifying items. The following describes the components of the Zimbra REST command:

Component Description
protocol The transport protocol, for example, http.
host The host name or IP address of the Zimbra Collaboration Suite server
port The port number, for example, 7070.
user The user. To load an explicit user account, specify the user in one of the following formats:
  • john.doe
  • john.doe@mydomain.com
  • http://localhost:7070/home/john.doe@mydomain.com/inbox.rss

You can also use "~" as a shortcut to the current authenticated user. For example:

object Designates the object to perform the command against. This might be a folder (such as inbox or drafts) or omitted (to download a specific item). If omitted, the query parameters provide the information the command requires.

For example, to download the inbox folder as XML:


For example, to download an item:

params A list of command-specific URL parameters. See the specific command for a list of the required and optional parameters.

Response Formats

The following describes the various response formats, designated using the fmt= parameter. Not all commands support all formats. See the specific command for a list of supported formats and command-specific details:

Format Description
xml Extensible Markup Language file format. See the Wikipedia article http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/XML
json JavaScript Object Notation file format. See http://www.json.org
rss Really Simple Syndication web feed format. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RSS
atom Atom syndication format. See [1]
html Hyper Text Markup Language file format. Produced the output as a web page.
zip Data compression and archive format.
tar Data compression and archive format ("tarball").
tgz Compressed tar file.
ics iCalendar file format. See the Wikipedia article http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ICalendar
ifb Internet Free Busy format.
csv Common Separated Values file format. A specific CSV format can be designated using the csvfmt parameter. Supported CSV formats include:
  • zimbra-csv
  • yahoo-csv
  • thunderbird-csv
  • outlook-2000-csv
  • outlook-2003-csv
sync Requests that the server return additional meta-data in the response headers. When using this option, the headers are returned inline of the response, unless you specify nohdr=1.

For example, get a mail message by item id and return the meta-data in the response headers and inline.


For example, get a mail message by item id and return the meta-data in the response headers only.


The following is a list of the meta-data headers:

  • X-Zimbra-ItemId
  • X-Zimbra-FolderId
  • X-Zimbra-Tags
  • X-Zimbra-Flags
  • X-Zimbra-Received
  • X-Zimbra-Modified
  • X-Zimbra-Change
  • X-Zimbra-Revision
  • X-Zimbra-Conv


There are multiple methods to authenticate as a user when accessing a mailbox. Using the auth= parameter, you can designate how to authenticate and whether or not to set the authentication cookie.

Default is auth=co,nsc,qp. Meaning: first, check for a cookie auth token; second, check for query parameter auth token; thrid, prompt for basic authentication.

The auth= parameter supports a list of comma-separated values which include:

Value Description
co The authentication token will be retrieved from the ZM_AUTH_TOKEN cookie.

For example:

qp The authentication token will be retrieved from request parameter zauthtoken.

For example:



These methods refer to Basic Authentication:
  • ba = Use Basic Authentication and do not set cookie after authentication.
  • nsc = Same as ba.
  • sc = Use Basic Authentication and set cookie after authentication.

For example:



The API supports the following methods to retrieve Zimbra data.

Mail Methods

Get Folder

Import Message

Address Book Methods

Get Contacts

Import Contacts

Calendar Methods

Get Calendar

Get FreeBusy

Import Appointments

Task Methods

Get Tasks

Item Methods

Get Item

Verified Against: Zimbra Collaboration Suite 6.0 Date Created: 01/16/2010
Article ID: https://wiki.zimbra.com/index.php?title=Zimbra_REST_API_Reference Date Modified: 2010-01-19

Try Zimbra

Try Zimbra Collaboration with a 60-day free trial.
Get it now »

Want to get involved?

You can contribute in the Community, Wiki, Code, or development of Zimlets.
Find out more. »

Looking for a Video?

Visit our YouTube channel to get the latest webinars, technology news, product overviews, and so much more.
Go to the YouTube channel »

Jump to: navigation, search