Workbench is a powerful, web-based suite of tools designed for administrators and developers to interact with Salesforce.com organizations via the Force.com APIs. Workbench includes robust support for the Force.com Partner, Bulk, Rest, Streaming, Metadata, and Apex APIs that allows users to describe, query, manipulate, and migrate, both, data and metadata in Salesforce.com organizations directly in their web browser with a simple and intuitive user interface.
Workbench also provides many advanced features for testing and troubleshooting the Force.com APIs, such as, customizable SOAP headers, Debug logs for API traffic, backward compatibility testing with previous API versions, and single sign-on integration within the Salesforce application.
Workbench is designed to provide just enough support to achieve these goals without getting in the way or trying to think too much for the user. This is important when using Workbench for testing and troubleshooting the APIs because Workbench will let you take control and perform operations that may otherwise not be possible through most API clients. As such, most errors messages from the APIs are returned to the user ‘as is’ and are not interpreted or manipulated by Workbench.
Being web-based, Workbench is subject to browser and connection timeouts; however, these can be adjusted within PHP’s settings, if you have access. As such, it is not recommended to use Workbench for large data loads or exports, scripting, or other performance intensive operations. It is much better suited for quick, on-the-fly interactions with the APIs.
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