Using the service

OpenDataSoft datasets can be accessed through a Catalog Service for the Web (CSW). This is a standard for exposing a catalogue of geospatial records in XML. The OpenDataSoft platform uses the CSW specification version 2.0.2.

Operations supported

OpenDataSoft platform implements four operations defined by the CSW standard :

CSW Operations
Operation Description
GetCapabilities Retrieve service metadata.
DescribeRecord Discover elements of the information model by the catalogue.
GetRecords Search for records and get their metadata and identifier.
GetRecordById Search for a record with a specific identifier.

Service address and methods

The service can be reached at the following entry address :


For this documentation, we use the the domain as an example but you should replace it by your custom domain name.

The CSW supports both GET and POST HTTP methods.

Request Headers

The only supported HTTP header is the optional Content-Type header, which must be set to text/xml when using a POST HTTP request.


When the HTTP GET method is used, the parameters are appended to the URL using a Keyword Value Pair (KVP) encoding. When the HTTP POST method is used, the operation request message is encoded as an XML document in the body of the POST message.

Here is the list of the common parameters, supported by all CSW operations :

Request Parameters
Operation Description Possible values Optionality and use
service The requested service CSW One (Mandatory)
request The requested operation GetCapabilities | DescribeRecord | GetRecords | GetRecordById One (Mandatory)
version The requested version of the service. 2.0.2 One (Optional)

Exception reports

When an error occurs, the service respond to the client using an Exception Report message to describe the error.

Parameters in Exception element
Name Definition Data type and value Multiplicity and use
ExceptionText Text describing specific exception represented by the exceptionCode Character String type, not empty. Value is an exception description as defined by individual servers Zero or more (optional). Omitted only when no more useful information available
exceptionCode Code representing type of this exception Character String type, not empty. Allowed values are specified by each implementation specification and server implementation One (mandatory)
locator Indicator of location in the client’s operation request where this exception was encountered Character String type, not empty. Contents defined for each allowed exceptionCode value for each operation Zero or one (optional). Omitted when no useful value available

Example :

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<ExceptionReport xmlns="" xmlns:xsi=""
    xsi:schemaLocation="" version="1.0.0" language="en">
  <Exception exceptionCode="InvalidParameterValue" locator="service">
    <ExceptionText>Service must be WFS or CSW.</ExceptionText>