Up until now, curl was my main method of interacting with the server APIs I write. But at @krjackson’s advice, I decided to give Postman a try. I was not disappointed. (For those that aren’t initiated, Postman is an awesome tool for developing, monitoring, and testing APIs.) I’m now steadily building a collection of saved API requests as we build out Blue Matador’s predictive alerting engine, smart agent, and intuitive dashboards for monitoring log data. I love Postman, and recommend it to anyone who’s still a slave to curl (I’m looking at you, @mbarlocker).

There’s a catch though.

Postman recommends installing its native app, but there wasn’t any documentation for installing it on Ubuntu — just a download link. So, in order to make it easier for fellow Ubuntu users to start with Postman, here are some quick commands to get set up!

wget https://dl.pstmn.io/download/latest/linux64 -O postman.tar.gz
sudo tar -xzf postman.tar.gz -C /opt
rm postman.tar.gz
sudo ln -s /opt/Postman/Postman /usr/bin/postman

Postman and Ubuntu go together like Emacs and butterflies. Why not make Postman show up in your Unity Launcher?

As a bonus, here’s a command to create an Unity desktop file for your launcher. After you create the file, logout and then log back in, you’ll be able to search for “Postman” in your Unity launcher to start up the Postman app.

cat > ~/.local/share/applications/postman.desktop <<EOL
[Desktop Entry]
Encoding=UTF-8
Name=Postman
Exec=postman
Icon=/opt/Postman/resources/app/assets/icon.png
Terminal=false
Type=Application
Categories=Development;
EOL

Happy RESTing!


Now you’ve got Postman installed to help you with your API development needs. Now you need centralized logging to keep track of your API calls in production.

Mark Siebert

Author Bio

Mark is a full-stack engineer who cut his teeth on professional software development at Lucid Software where he specialized in building scalable backend systems. He's a huge fan of open source software and is one of the primary authors of Relate (database access library) and Cumulus (AWS infrastructure management). Mark loves watching shows with his wife, studying Chinese, and hunting Minecraft chickens.