Quickstart - Web and Service Apps

Introduction

This guide introduces you to some of the basic concepts of the Bentley iTwin Platform and helps you get your applications set up quickly.

There are four application types supported by the iTwin Platform service.

  • SPA - a single-page application where everything runs from a single web page
  • Web Apps - a traditional web app
  • Service - a machine-to-machine application requiring no user interaction
  • Desktop/Mobile - an application that runs natively on a user’s device.
Note: If you are implementing a Single Page Application (SPA) Bentley provides an open source Viewer template. Please see the Get Started tutorial in our list of tutorials.

This guide assumes we are creating a Web app or a Service app. Differences are noted where applicable.

Prerequisites

  • You must have a working development environment that is able to make REST calls to the iTwin Platform services.

1. Enable your Application

This section guides you through setting up your digital twin application so it is visible to iTwin Platform services. Once completed, you are ready to begin working with your iTwin.

All users accessing the iTwin Platform services must have a profile set up.

  1. Enter your email address, click Next.
  2. Enter your password, click Next. The developer portal home page displays.
  1. Click the Don’t have an account? Register now link. The Create Account page displays.
  2. Enter the requested information and click Create account.
  3. Verify your email using the code sent to the email you provided.
  4. If you are redirected to the sign in page, sign in with your new credentials.

You must register all applications connecting to and sending data through the iTwin platform. Registration identifies your app to other services and specifies what resources it can access, such as iModels, iModelHub, reality data, user information, and more.

  1. Click your Profile button in the upper-right corner of the page and select My Apps from the drop-down. If you do not see your profile button, please return to 1.1 Log in to your Bentley Account
  2. Click Register New.
  3. Enter the name of your app. There is a 128-character limit for the app name unless you are registering a Service app. Service apps are limited to 60 characters. In all cases, the following characters are not allowed: ,;[]=<>?"{}|+!@#$%^\*`~
  4. Select the appropriate APIs for this app in API Associations. The Allowed Scopes field lists the scopes for each API selected.
  5. Select the type of app you are registering.
    • Web App
    • Service
  6. Enter one or more Redirect URIs. Users are redirected to this page after signing in.
  7. (Optional) Enter one or more Post logout redirect URIs. Users are redirected to this page after signing out.
  8. Click Save.

When saving the registration for either a Web app or Service app, the client secret is displayed. Click Copy to copy this information.

IMPORTANT The client secret is displayed once. Make sure you copy it and place it in a secure location. You will need it in a later step.

An iModel holds information about a single infrastructure asset with a schema defined by Base Infrastructure Schemas (BIS). BIS are a family of domain-specific class definitions that represent the properties and relationships of entities within an iModel. All information held in an iModel is an instance of a class defined in BIS. iModels may contain physical and functional models, drawings, specifications, analytical models, etc.

Bentley allows you to create iModels using a few different methods,

  • Bentley sample file: Create a new iModel by copying one of the existing Bentley-supplied samples.

  • Local File: Create a new iModel by converting a single file uploaded from your computer, most commonly a design file.

  • Empty iModel: Use iTwin Synchronizer to populate the iModel by converting a set of files from your local computer.

For this guide, we’re importing a Local File or using a Bentley sample model.

  1. Click your Profile button in the upper-right corner of the page and select My iTwins from the drop-down. If you do not see your profile button, please return to 1.1 Log in to your Bentley Account
  2. Click New.
  3. Enter a name for your Test iTwin in the Name field.
    There is a 255-character limit for the iTwin name. The following characters are not allowed: ,;[]=<>?"{}|+!@#$%^\*`~
  4. Click Save
    A Test iTwin will be created for you. There will be no iModels in it initially.
  5. Select the iModel workflow you want to use.
  1. Click New in the iModels list
  2. Click Bentley Sample.
  3. Select the sample to use in the Bentley iModel template drop-down.
  4. Click Save
  1. Click New in the iModels list
  2. Click Empty iModel File.
  3. Click Save
  4. From the iModel Home grid, select the File Synchronization tile
  5. Click Upload file(s) and upload your file(s)

2. Retrieve an Access Token

Bentley iTwin Platform APIs and SDKs use OAuth 2.0 to support authentication to the platform. If your application is web-based, the authentication process requires the end-user to consent to it retrieving and using data on their behalf. This step is not required for Service apps.

A Bearer token is used to manage access to the APIs. Click the appropriate application type below to review the steps for authorizing your application.

Authorize a web application

Authorize a service application

For more in-depth information regarding authentication on the iTwin Platform, see Authentication and Authorization.

3. Connecting the App and the iModel

Bentley uses Projects, also called iTwins, to manage access to the iModel you created.

When you created your iModel, you were provided with an iTwinID and an iModelID, The iTwinID equates to your projectID. To validate this, run GET on the iTwins API.

GET https://api.bentley.com/itwins/{id}

Notice that the iModel associated with that project (iTwin) is the same as displayed in the My iTwins page.

"imodels": {"href": "https://api.bentley.com/imodels?projectId=1183b0f0-f2a5-4776-8fa8-83366eda2c45"}

Other details about the project are also returned in the response such as status, location, any issues, etc.

For more details regarding using the iTwins API, see the iTwins API page.