Last updatedMay 1, 2020

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Integrating with Confluence Cloud

Looking for the latest updates for developers? See the changelog to get the latest updates and announcements for Confluence app development.

Welcome to the Confluence Cloud developer documentation! Confluence is a knowledge sharing tool that helps teams create and share content.

Developers can customize, extend, and integrate with Confluence by creating apps. Apps can integrate Confluence with an existing service, add new features to Confluence, create and manage content, or create new workflows and collaboration tools for Confluence users.

This page covers the basics of developing for Confluence Cloud:

  • Creating Confluence apps and customizations with Atlassian Connect.
  • Using the Confluence APIs in apps, scripts, or one-off calls.
  • Following Atlassian’s development standards for security, design, and the Atlassian Marketplace.

We recommend using Atlassian Connect to build apps, but you can also integrate in other ways. For example, you can develop apps without Connect, or call the REST APIs via scripts or other API clients.

Ready to build an app? See Getting started with Atlassian Connect Express for Node.js (ACE). You’ll see the ACE framework in many Confluence developer guides and tutorials.

Atlassian Connect apps

Atlassian Connect provides tools that simplify building apps for Atlassian products, including Confluence Cloud. Connect apps are web applications that operate remotely over HTTP. To end users, a Connect app looks like a fully integrated part of Confluence.

A Connect app can add elements to the Confluence UI, access APIs, and respond to events using webhooks. For example, a Connect app could pull data on pageviews from Confluence, then surface the number of views in a UI module at the top of every page.

You can build Connect apps in any language or framework, but Atlassian supports two toolkits to help you start building apps: Atlassian Connect Express (ACE) for Node.js and Atlassian Connect Spring Boot for Java. For information on other framework options, see Frameworks and tools.

Building apps outside of Connect

Apps built without Atlassian Connect can still access data and create content through the Confluence APIs. Note that Connect provides some UI modules and elements that aren't available outside of Connect apps.

For security in external apps, you can use OAuth 2.0 (3LO) or OAuth 1.0 (basic auth) to pass information between your app and Confluence, depending on your security needs. See Security overview for more.

Using the APIs

You can use the Confluence APIs in apps you develop for Confluence, as well as in scripts, API clients, or other methods of making calls.

The REST and JavaScript APIs allow you to access and update Confluence entities, like pages, blog posts, spaces, users, and groups. You can use the APIs for content creation, search functions, user management, and more.

Atlassian development guidelines

Follow our design guidelines to make your app consistent with Atlassian's products. We also have resources to help keep your Confluence app secure and add it to the Atlassian Marketplace.

Atlassian Design guidelines

Since Connect apps can insert content directly into Confluence Cloud, it's important that apps are visually compatible with Atlassian design. We have resources to help you design your app:

  • Atlassian Design Guidelines — Our design guidelines define core interactions with the Atlassian applications.
  • Atlaskit — Atlaskit is a library of reusable front-end UI components.

Security

There are three basic options for security, depending on what sort of app you are trying to make:

  • Connect apps have HTTPS and JWT authentication built in to secure communication between your app, Confluence Cloud, and the user. Our Connect toolkits, Atlassian Connect Express (ACE) and Atlassian Connect for Spring Boot, handle most of the security setup for you, so it’s easy to get started with a secure app.
  • Non-Connect apps can use Oauth 2.0 (3LO) to pass permissions and data from Confluence.
  • Basic auth (Oauth 1.0) is supported for making API calls, but is not recommended unless you have other security measures in place.

3LO isn't supported for Connect apps.

Read the Security overview for more details.

Atlassian Marketplace

You can sell your app on the Atlassian Marketplace so other cloud users can install it, or list it privately if you don't intend to sell or distribute your code. Private listings use secret tokens that you can generate yourself.

If you are interested in selling you app on the Atlassian Marketplace, read our licensing guide and selling on Marketplace for more information.

Examples and resources

Check out our example apps and patterns for app ideas and strategies, or see some tutorials on more advanced topics, like using webhooks or macros to integrate your service into Confluence.

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