This documentation is for Dovecot v2.x, see wiki1 for v1.x documentation.

Doveadm HTTP API

Doveadm HTTP API is available since v2.2.22. It is considered experimental in v2.2.22. Can be considered as stable since 2.2.23. It lets you perform doveadm commands over HTTP transport.


To enable HTTP API, add following to your config file:

service doveadm {
   inet_listener http {
      port = 8080
      #ssl = yes # uncomment to enable https

To enable SSL make sure ssl=yes or ssl=required in global settings, and set ssl=yes in the listener.

You can use unix listener too, and define host to listen on. You also need to either define doveadm_password, or doveadm_api_key. With doveadm_password, the username is doveadm. This is going to change in future release. With API Key you are expected to send

Authorization: X-Dovecot-API Base64(apikey)

header to access the API. (In v2.2.22-2.2.23, this key was incorrectly "X-Doveadm-API".)


You can see valid commands and their parameters by accessing http://host:port/doveadm/v1.

To send command(s), you can send following with Content-Type: application/json

  ["command", {"parameter":"value"}, "optional identifer"]

In following examples, you can either use Basic or X-Dovecot-API authorization. X-Dovecot-API usage:

curl -H "Authorization: X-Dovecot-API <base64 dovecot_api_key>"

Basic authorization uses "doveadm" as the username, and doveadm_password setting as the password:

curl -H "Authorization: Basic <base64 doveadm:doveadm_password>"

To get acceptable routes

curl -H "Authorization: Basic <base64 doveadm:doveadm_password>" http://server:8080/

To get acceptable commands and their parameters

curl -H "Authorization: Basic <base64 doveadm:doveadm_password>" http://server:8080/doveadm/v1

an example command would be

curl -H "Content-Type: application/json" -H "Authorization: Basic <base64
doveadm:doveadm_password>" -d '[["fetch",{"user":"username","field":["uid"],"query":["mailbox","INBOX"]},"c01"]]' http://server:8080/doveadm/v1

You can have multiple commands in the array, but for now it is safest not to do so, as some commands may kill the server in certain error conditions and leaving you without any response.

Responses are in same format, command is replaced with either "error" or "doveadmResponse" and parameters with array of response variables. In case of successful command which has no output, response is going to be [].

Errors are indicated with "error" and type, exit-code in response part.


The logs will indicated execute command(s) and also Apache access.log format strings on requests. In case of fatal errors, the access.log string might be missing.

Example clients

Design/DoveadmProtocol/HTTP (last edited 2018-08-25 23:51:35 by TimoSirainen)