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A client library for the Kubo RPC API

Table of contents


$ npm i kubo-rpc-client

Browser <script> tag

Loading this module through a script tag will make it's exports available as KuboRpcClient in the global namespace.

<script src="https://unpkg.com/kubo-rpc-client/dist/index.min.js"></script>

Work In Progress

This client is still a work in progress and in active development. Please refer to ipfs-http-client for now and only use this package if you are aware of the implications. Follow https://github.com/ipfs/js-kubo-rpc-client/milestone/1 for tracking when this library is ready for consumption

Kubo RPC Client logo

The JavaScript RPC client library for Kubo.

Getting Started

We've come a long way, but this project is still in Alpha, lots of development is happening, APIs might change, beware of 🐉..

npm install --save kubo-rpc-client

Both the Current and Active LTS versions of Node.js are supported. Please see nodejs.org for what these currently are.

Next Steps



create an instance of the HTTP API client




options can be a String, a URL or a Multiaddr which will be interpreted as the address of the IPFS node we wish to use the API of.

Alternatively it can be an object which may have the following keys:

Name Type Default Description
url String or URL or Multiaddr 'http://localhost:5001/api/v0' A URL that resolves to a running instance of the IPFS HTTP RPC API
protocol String 'http' The protocol to used (ignored if url is specified)
host String 'localhost' The host to used (ignored if url is specified)
port number 5001 The port to used (ignored if url is specified)
path String 'api/v0' The path to used (ignored if url is specified)
agent http.Agent http.Agent({ keepAlive: true, maxSockets: 6 }) An http.Agent used to control client behaviour (node.js only)


Type Description
Object An object that conforms to the IPFS Core API


import { create } from 'kubo-rpc-client'

// connect to the default API address http://localhost:5001
const client = create()

// connect to a different API
const client = create({ url: "" });

// connect using a URL
const client = create(new URL(''))

// call Core API methods
const { cid } = await client.add('Hello world!')


kubo-rpc-client will not implement the IPFS Core API. Please see https://github.com/ipfs/kubo/issues/9125 for more information.

Additional Options

All core API methods take additional options specific to the HTTP API:

  • headers - An object or Headers instance that can be used to set custom HTTP headers. Note that this option can also be configured globally via the constructor options.
  • searchParams - An object or URLSearchParams instance that can be used to add additional query parameters to the query string sent with each request.

Instance Utils

  • ipfs.getEndpointConfig()

Call this on your client instance to return an object containing the host, port, protocol and api-path.

Static Types and Utils

Aside from the default export, kubo-rpc-client exports various types and utilities that are included in the bundle:

These can be accessed like this, for example:

import { CID } from 'kubo-rpc-client'

Glob source

A utility to allow files on the file system to be easily added to IPFS.

globSource(path, pattern, [options])
  • path: A path to a single file or directory to glob from
  • pattern: A pattern to match files under path
  • options: Optional options
  • options.hidden: Hidden/dot files (files or folders starting with a ., for example, .git/) are not included by default. To add them, use the option { hidden: true }.

Returns an async iterable that yields { path, content } objects suitable for passing to ipfs.add.

import { create, globSource } from 'ipfs'

const ipfs = await create()

for await (const file of ipfs.addAll(globSource('./docs', '**/*'))) {
  path: 'docs/assets/anchor.js',
  cid: CID('QmVHxRocoWgUChLEvfEyDuuD6qJ4PhdDL2dTLcpUy3dSC2'),
  size: 15347
  path: 'docs/assets/bass-addons.css',
  cid: CID('QmPiLWKd6yseMWDTgHegb8T7wVS7zWGYgyvfj7dGNt2viQ'),
  size: 232

URL source

A utility to allow content from the internet to be easily added to IPFS.

  • url: A string URL or URL instance to send HTTP GET request to

Returns an async iterable that yields { path, content } objects suitable for passing to ipfs.add.

import { create, urlSource } from 'kubo-rpc-client'
const ipfs = create()

const file = await ipfs.add(urlSource('https://ipfs.io/images/ipfs-logo.svg'))

  path: 'ipfs-logo.svg',
  cid: CID('QmTqZhR6f7jzdhLgPArDPnsbZpvvgxzCZycXK7ywkLxSyU'),
  size: 3243

Running the daemon with the right port

To interact with the API, you need to have a local daemon running. It needs to be open on the right port. 5001 is the default, and is used in the examples below, but it can be set to whatever you need.

# Show the ipfs config API port to check it is correct
> ipfs config Addresses.API
# Set it if it does not match the above output
> ipfs config Addresses.API /ip4/
# Restart the daemon after changing the config

# Run the daemon
> ipfs daemon

Importing the module and usage

import { create } from 'kubo-rpc-client'

// connect to ipfs daemon API server
const ipfs = create('http://localhost:5001') // (the default in Node.js)

// or connect with multiaddr
const ipfs = create('/ip4/')

// or using options
const ipfs = create({ host: 'localhost', port: '5001', protocol: 'http' })

// or specifying a specific API path
const ipfs = create({ host: '', port: '80', apiPath: '/ipfs/api/v0' })

In a web browser

through Browserify

Same as in Node.js, you just have to browserify the code before serving it. See the browserify repo for how to do that.

See the example in the examples folder to get a boilerplate.

through webpack

See the example in the examples folder to get an idea on how to use kubo-rpc-client with webpack.

from CDN

Instead of a local installation (and browserification) you may request a remote copy of IPFS API from jsDelivr.

To always request the latest version, use one of the following examples:

<!-- loading the minified version using jsDelivr -->
<script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/kubo-rpc-client/dist/index.min.js"></script>

For maximum security you may also decide to:

  • reference a specific version of IPFS API (to prevent unexpected breaking changes when a newer latest version is published)
  • generate a SRI hash of that version and use it to ensure integrity. Learn more also at the jsdelivr website
  • set the CORS settings attribute to make anonymous requests to CDN



CDN-based IPFS API provides the KuboRpcClient object of the global window object. Example:

const ipfs = window.KuboRpcClient.create({ host: 'localhost', port: 5001 })

If you omit the host and port, the client will parse window.host, and use this information. This also works, and can be useful if you want to write apps that can be run from multiple different gateways:

const ipfs = window.KuboRpcClient.create()

Custom Headers

If you wish to send custom headers with each request made by this library, for example, the Authorization header. You can use the config to do so:

const ipfs = create({
  host: 'localhost',
  port: 5001,
  protocol: 'http',
  headers: {
    authorization: 'Bearer ' + TOKEN

Global Timeouts

To set a global timeout for all requests pass a value for the timeout option:

// Timeout after 10 seconds
const ipfs = create({ timeout: 10000 })
// Timeout after 2 minutes
const ipfs = create({ timeout: '2m' })
// see https://www.npmjs.com/package/parse-duration for valid string values



We run tests by executing npm test in a terminal window. This will run both Node.js and Browser tests, both in Chrome and PhantomJS. To ensure that the module conforms with the interface-ipfs-core spec, we run the batch of tests provided by the interface module, which can be found here.

Historical context

This module started as a direct mapping from the go-ipfs cli to a JavaScript implementation, although this was useful and familiar to a lot of developers that were coming to IPFS for the first time, it also created some confusion on how to operate the core of IPFS and have access to the full capacity of the protocol. After much consideration, we decided to create interface-ipfs-core with the goal of standardizing the interface of a core implementation of IPFS, and keep the utility functions the IPFS community learned to use and love, such as reading files from disk and storing them directly to IPFS.


Licensed under either of


Contributions welcome! Please check out the issues.

Also see our contributing document for more information on how we work, and about contributing in general.

Please be aware that all interactions related to this repo are subject to the IPFS Code of Conduct.

Unless you explicitly state otherwise, any contribution intentionally submitted for inclusion in the work by you, as defined in the Apache-2.0 license, shall be dual licensed as above, without any additional terms or conditions.

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