RESTful Web Services: Posting Data

Welcome to Part 3 of this review of the Pluralsight course RESTful Web Services with Node.js and Express by Jonathan Mills.


Jonathan is a JavaScript and Node.js expert working mostly in the MEAN Stack with individuals and companies to help build their technical skills to cope with the constantly changing landscape of software development.

He is also an ASP.NET insider and an international speaker focusing on JavaScript both in the browser and on the server.

Node.js and Express gives us the ability to write lightweight, fast, scalable APIs quickly.

Also in this series:

Part 1 – What is REST?
Part 2 – Getting Data
Part 3 – Posting Data
Part 4 – Updating Data
Part 5 – Testing

Posting Data

Using Body-parser

In app.js we implement the .post method.

In order to get access to the post data we use a body parser, which is a piece of Express middleware that reads the body and parses it into a JSON object.

npm install body-parser –save

We see a couple of app.use statements that we need to write for bodyParser.

Our post method looks at the body, see if it has any JSON objects in it, and if so it adds any to req.body

We end by typing gulp to run our server

Testing with Postman

Postman is a Chrome extension for test web API calls. It is a lot like Fiddler, but I find it a little easier to use for some tasks.

Jonathan uses Postman for testing here, doing GET requests first and we see that we get our list of books back okay, and we also get back only one when we add our Id.

Next some POST requests. This requires a header to be added:

Content-Type      application/json

We also submit the title, genre and author as JSON in the body of the request.

Saving Data

In this demo we update app.js to save our book data to MongoDB, and we see it working using Postman.

Code Cleanup

There’s already 66 lines of code in app.js

We create Routes/bookRoutes.js and pull in a reference to Express.

Then we create a routes function.

Injecting Our Model

When we test in Postman we see an error in bookRoutes.js: “ReferenceError: Book is not defined”

To fix this we inject our Book model into bookRoutes. This is done by passing in Book in round brackets at the end of our require statement:

bookRouter = require(./Routes/bookRoutes’)(Book)

Part 4 – Updating Data is coming soon

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