Using Jenkins / Hudson remote API to check jobs status

While working on my talk Writing a Hudson / Jenkins plugin (for EclipseCon NA 2014), I wanted to publish blog posts about the ideas mentioned in the talk; in this post I explain how you can interact with your CI server without using the web interface.

The Jenkins / Hudson remote API can be very convenient to quickly gather jobs status (and even to create or launch jobs ! but I won’t cover that aspect in this blog post); let’s have a look at some examples.

Have a look at the CLI to automate Jenkins configuration tasks.

It’s available at http://hudson-or-jenkins/cli : download the hudson-cli.jar or jenkins-cli.jar and get started with this first command :

Recently, I had to replace 50 jobs with a matrix job : once I created the matrix job, we decided to de activate the previous 50 jobs (before removing them for good)

Using the CLI, I could quickly login :

then get the list of jobs :

I saved the list of the 50 jobs I wanted to de activate in a text file, and I looped through this list :

More efficient than going through the UI, isn’t it ?

Every URL can be represented as XML or JSON

As explained in the Jenkins documentation and Hudson documentation, you just need to append /api/xml or /api/json or /api/python to any Jenkins URL to see the corresponding representation

You can configure the responses adding few arguments to the URL :


The default depth is 0, to get more details about your jobs, builds, etc, set the depth to 1 :

This argument can be harmful to your CI server when bigger than 1 (it gets really deep past 1 …) since the responses tend to become really large.


The tree argument allows you to select some portion of the response[displayName,lastBuild[result]]

xpath and exclude (XML only)

Those arguments are probably the most powerful ones, sadly they are only available for xml responses :

If I only want to display jobs that were not successful, I can simply use this url :[displayName,lastBuild[result]]&exclude=hudson/job[lastBuild[result=’SUCCESS’]]

And if I only want to see jobs with a name starting with « jruby », I can apply Xpath functions to the url :[starts-with(name,’jruby’)]&wrapper=mywrap

Few Jenkins and Hudson public instances URLs

It’s pretty easy to find some public Jenkins and Hudson instances to practice your latest URL filtering (google for « Hudson Dashboard » or « Jenkins Dashboard »), but it’s harder to find up to date and meaningful (few jobs) instances :

Jenkins :

Hudson :

That said, try your local instance first :-)

Jenkins and Hudson remote API scripts

The main interest of the Jenkins/Hudson remote API is to interact with it from your own software : I gather here some examples in few scripting languages

Groovy Script to parse Jenkins Hudson build results

Python Script to parse Jenkins Hudson build results

JavaScript code to parse Jenkins Hudson build results


You can find those scripts on Github ! Or even execute them in your browser for the Javascript Jenkins Hudson Build parser script