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README.md

Node Slack SDK

Build Status codecov

Visit the documentation site for all the lovely details.

This SDK is a collection of single-purpose packages. The packages are aimed at making building Slack apps easy, performant, secure, and scalable. They can help with just about anything in the Slack platform, from dropping notifications in channels to fully interactive bots.

The Slack platform offers several APIs to build apps. Each Slack API delivers part of the capabilities from the platform, so that you can pick just those that fit for your needs. This SDK offers a corresponding package for each of Slack's APIs. They are small and powerful when used independently, and work seamlessly when used together, too.

Just starting out? The Getting Started tutorial will walk you through building your first Slack app using Node.js.

Slack API What its for NPM Package
Web API Send data to or query data from Slack using any of over 130 methods. @slack/web-api
Events API Listen for incoming messages and many other events happening in Slack, using a URL. @slack/events-api
Interactive Messages Respond to button clicks, dialogs, and other interactions with messages. @slack/interactive-messages
RTM API Listen for incoming messages and a limited set of events happening in Slack, using websockets. @slack/rtm-api
Incoming Webhooks Send notifications to a single channel which the user picks on installation. @slack/webhook

Not sure about which APIs are right for your app? Read our blog post that explains the options. If you're still not sure, reach out for help and our community can guide you.

Installation

Use your favorite package manager to install any of the packages and save to your package.json:

$ npm install @slack/web-api @slack/events-api

# Or, if you prefer yarn
$ yarn add @slack/web-api @slack/events-api

Usage

The following examples summarize the most common ways to use this package. There's also a Getting Started tutorial that's perfect for just starting out, and each package's documentation, linked in the table above.

Posting a message with Web API

Your app will interact with the Web API through the WebClient object, which is an export from @slack/web-api. You typically instantiate a client with a token you received from Slack. The example below shows how to post a message into a channel, DM, MPDM, or group. The WebClient object makes it simple to call any of the over 130 Web API methods.

const { WebClient } = require('@slack/web-api');

// An access token (from your Slack app or custom integration - xoxp, xoxb)
const token = process.env.SLACK_TOKEN;

const web = new WebClient(token);

// This argument can be a channel ID, a DM ID, a MPDM ID, or a group ID
const conversationId = 'C1232456';

(async () => {
  // See: https://api.slack.com/methods/chat.postMessage
  const res = await web.chat.postMessage({ channel: conversationId, text: 'Hello there' });

  // `res` contains information about the posted message
  console.log('Message sent: ', res.ts);
})();

Note: To use the example above, the token is required to have either the bot, chat:user:write, or chat:bot:write scopes.

Tip: Use the Block Kit Builder for a playground where you can prototype your message's look and feel.

Listening for an event with the Events API

Your app will receive events at the Request URL you registered with Slack. Before completing that registration, you need to verify that the URL belongs to you by responding to a challenge. There is a command line tool built into the @slack/events-api package that you may use to respond to the challenge.

$ ./node_modules/.bin/slack-verify --secret <signing_secret> [--path=/slack/events] [--port=3000]

Run the command with your own signing secret (provided by Slack in the "Basic Information"), and optionally a path or a port. A web server will be listening for requests containing a challenge and respond to them the way Slack expects. Once the Request URL is verified and saved, you can stop the server with Ctrl-C and start working on your app. We also have a tutorial with information about getting a public URL that can be used for development.

You app will use the createEventAdapter() function, which is an export from @slack/events-api. It creates an object that emits events, just Node's built-in EventEmitter, except they are happening in Slack. It also has a start() method, which starts a web server for you.

// Initialize using signing secret from environment variables
const { createEventAdapter } = require('@slack/events-api');
const slackEvents = createEventAdapter(process.env.SLACK_SIGNING_SECRET);
const port = process.env.PORT || 3000;

// Attach listeners to events by Slack Event "type". See: https://api.slack.com/events/message.im
slackEvents.on('message', (event) => {
  console.log(`Received a message event: user ${event.user} in channel ${event.channel} says ${event.text}`);
});

// Handle errors (see `errorCodes` export)
slackEvents.on('error', console.error);

// Start a basic HTTP server
slackEvents.start(port).then(() => {
  // Listening on path '/slack/events' by default
  console.log(`server listening on port ${port}`);
});

If you have your own server, or are using a framework like express, you can plug the slackEvents object right into those, too.

// Initialize an express app
const app = require('express')();

// Attach the event adapter to the express app as a middleware
app.use('/slack/events', slackEvents.expressMiddleware());
// Create a plain http server, and then attach the event adapter as a request listener
const { createServer } = require('http');
const server = createServer(slackEvents.requestListener());

NOTE: To use the examples above, you need to subscribe to message.im in the Event Subscriptions section of your Slack App configuration settings.

Responding to interactive messages

Your app will receive actions from interactive messages and other components at the Request URL you registered with Slack. Unlike the Events API, the Request URL doesn't need to be verified, because you're only receiving actions from messages your app generated in the first place. It may be helpful to read our tutorial on getting a public URL that can be used for development.

Your app will use the createMessageAdapter() function, which is an export from @slack/interactive-messages. It creates an object that routes actions to the handlers you define. It also has a start() method, which starts a web server for you.

// Initialize using signing secret from environment variables
const { createMessageAdapter } = require('@slack/interactive-messages');
const slackInteractions = createMessageAdapter(process.env.SLACK_SIGNING_SECRET);
const port = process.env.PORT || 3000;


// Handle interactions from messages with a `callback_id` of `welcome_button`
slackInteractions.action('welcome_button', (payload, respond) => {
  // `payload` contains information about the action
  // see: https://api.slack.com/docs/interactive-message-field-guide#action_url_invocation_payload
  console.log(payload);

  // `respond` is a function that can be used to follow up on the action with a message
  respond({
    text: 'Success!',
  });

  // The return value is used to update the message where the action occurred immediately.
  // Use this to items like buttons and menus that you only want a user to interact with once.
  return {
    text: 'Processing...',
  }
});

// Handle interactions from messages containing an action block with an `action_id` of `select_coffee`
slackInteractions.action({ actionId: 'select_coffee' }, (payload, respond) => {
  // `payload` contains information about the action
  // Block Kit Builder can be used to explore the payload shape for various action blocks:
  // https://api.slack.com/tools/block-kit-builder

  // `respond` and return value are the same as above.
});

// Start the built-in HTTP server
slackInteractions.start(port).then(() => {
  // Listening on path '/slack/actions' by default
  console.log(`server listening on port ${port}`);
});

If you have your own server, or are using a framework like express, you can plug the slackInteractions object right into those, too.

// Initialize an express app
const app = require('express')();

// Attach the interaction adapter to the express app as a middleware
app.use('/slack/actions', slackInteractions.expressMiddleware());
// Create a plain http server, and then attach the interaction adapter as a request listener
const { createServer } = require('http');
const server = createServer(slackInteractions.requestListener());

Using the Real-Time Messaging API

Your app will interact with the RTM API through the RTMClient object, which an export from @slack/rtm-api. You need to instantiate it with a token, usually a bot token, that you received from Slack. The example below shows how to wait for the RTM connection to be established, and then send a simple string message to a channel.

const { RTMClient } = require('@slack/rtm-api');

// An access token (from your Slack app or custom integration - usually xoxb)
const token = process.env.SLACK_TOKEN;

// The client is initialized and then started to get an active connection to the platform
const rtm = new RTMClient(token);
rtm.start()
  .catch(console.error);

// Calling `rtm.on(eventName, eventHandler)` allows you to handle events (see: https://api.slack.com/events)
// When the connection is active, the 'ready' event will be triggered
rtm.on('ready', async () => {

  // Sending a message requires a channel ID, a DM ID, an MPDM ID, or a group ID
  // The following value is used as an example
  const conversationId = 'C1232456';

  // The RTM client can send simple string messages
  const res = await rtm.sendMessage('Hello there', conversationId);

  // `res` contains information about the sent message
  console.log('Message sent: ', res.ts);
});

// After the connection is open, your app will start receiving other events.
rtm.on('user_typing', (event) => {
  // The argument is the event as shown in the reference docs.
  // For example, https://api.slack.com/events/user_typing
  console.log(event);
})

Requirements

This package supports Node v8 LTS and higher. It's highly recommended to use the latest LTS version of node, and the documentation is written using syntax and features from that version.

Getting Help

If you get stuck, we're here to help. The following are the best ways to get assistance working through your issue:

  • Issue Tracker for questions, feature requests, bug reports and general discussion related to these packages. Try searching before you create a new issue.
  • Email us in Slack developer support: developers@slack.com
  • Bot Developers Hangout: a Slack community for developers building all types of bots. You can find the maintainers and users of these packages in #sdk-node-slack-sdk.
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