Use query parameters to customize responses

Microsoft Graph supports optional query parameters that you can use to specify and control the amount of data returned in a response. The support for the exact query parameters varies from one API operation to another, and depending on the API, can differ between the v1.0 and beta endpoints.

Tip

On the beta endpoint, the $ prefix is optional. For example, instead of $filter, you can use filter. On the v1 endpoint, the $ prefix is optional for only a subset of APIs. For simplicity, always include $ if using the v1 endpoint.

Query parameters can be OData system query options or other query parameters.

Note

RFC 3986 requires that reserved characters are percent-encoded in URLs. However, this document may not show percent-encoded characters for readability. The reserved characters, such as the comma (,) in a startsWith expression, should however be percent-encoded in your requests.

OData system query options

A Microsoft Graph API operation might support one or more of the following OData system query options. These query options are compatible with the OData V4 query language.

Note

OData 4.0 supports system query options in only GET operations.

Click the examples to try them in Graph Explorer.

Name Description Example
$count Retrieves the total count of matching resources. /me/messages?$top=2&$count=true
$expand Retrieves related resources. /groups?$expand=members
$filter Filters results (rows). /users?$filter=startswith(givenName,'J')
$format Returns the results in the specified media format. /users?$format=json
$orderby Orders results. /users?$orderby=displayName desc
$search Returns results based on search criteria. /me/messages?$search=pizza
$select Filters properties (columns). /users?$select=givenName,surname
$skip Indexes into a result set. Also used by some APIs to implement paging and can be used together with $top to manually page results. /me/messages?$skip=11
$top Sets the page size of results. /users?$top=2

To know the OData system query options that an API and its properties support, see the Properties table in the resource page, and the Optional query parameters section of the LIST and GET operations for the API.

Other query parameters

Name Description Example
$skipToken Retrieves the next page of results from result sets that span multiple pages. (Some APIs use $skip instead.) /users?$skiptoken=X%274453707402000100000017...

Other OData URL capabilities

The following OData 4.0 capabilities are URL segments, not query parameters.

Name Description Example
$count Retrieves the integer total of the collection. GET /users/$count
GET /groups/{id}/members/$count
$ref Updates entities membership to a collection. POST /groups/{id}/members/$ref
$value Retrieves or updates the binary value of an item. GET /me/photo/$value
$batch Combine multiple HTTP requests into a batch request. POST /$batch

Encoding query parameters

The values of query parameters should be percent-encoded. Many HTTP clients, browsers, and tools (such as the Graph Explorer) will help you with this. If a query is failing, one possible cause is failure to encode the query parameter values appropriately.

An unencoded URL looks like this:

GET https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/users?$filter=startswith(givenName, 'J')

A properly encoded URL looks like this:

GET https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/users?$filter=startswith(givenName%2C+'J')

Escaping single quotes

For requests that use single quotes, if any parameter values also contain single quotes, those must be double escaped; otherwise, the request will fail due to invalid syntax. In the example, the string value let''s meet for lunch? has the single quote escaped.

GET https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/messages?$filter=subject eq 'let''s meet for lunch?'

count parameter

Use the $count query parameter to retrieve the count of the total number of items in a collection or matching an expression. $count can be used in the following ways:

  1. As a query string parameter with the syntax $count=true to include a count of the total number of items in a collection alongside the page of data values returned from Microsoft Graph. For example, users?$count=true.
  2. As a URL segment to retrieve only the integer total of the collection. For example, users/$count.
  3. In a $filter expression with equality operators to retrieve a collection of data where the filtered property is an empty collection. See the examples below.

Note

  1. On resources that derive from directoryObject, $count is only supported in an advanced query. See Advanced query capabilities in Azure AD directory objects.
  2. Use of $count is not supported in Azure AD B2C tenants.

For example, the following request returns both the contact collection of the current user, and the number of items in the contact collection in the @odata.count property.

GET  https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/contacts?$count=true

The $count query parameter is supported for collections of the following frequently used resources and their relationships that derive from directoryObject and only in advanced queries:

expand parameter

Many Microsoft Graph resources expose both declared properties of the resource as well as its relationships with other resources. These relationships are also called reference properties or navigation properties, and they can reference either a single resource or a collection of resources. For example, the mail folders, manager, and direct reports of a user are all exposed as relationships.

Normally, you can query either the properties of a resource or one of its relationships in a single request, but not both. You can use the $expand query string parameter to include the expanded resource or collection referenced by a single relationship (navigation property) in your results. Only one relationship can be expanded in a single request.

The following example gets root drive information along with the top-level child items in a drive:

GET https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/drive/root?$expand=children

With some resource collections, you can also specify the properties to be returned in the expanded resources by adding a $select parameter. The following example performs the same query as the previous example but uses a $select statement to limit the properties returned for the expanded child items to the id and name properties.

GET https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/drive/root?$expand=children($select=id,name)

Note

  • Not all relationships and resources support the $expand query parameter. For example, you can expand the directReports, manager, and memberOf relationships on a user, but you cannot expand its events, messages, or photo relationships. Not all resources or relationships support using $select on expanded items.

  • With Azure AD resources that derive from directoryObject, like user and group, $expand typically returns a maximum of 20 items for the expanded relationship and has no @odata.nextLink. See more known issues.

  • $expand is not currently supported with advanced queries.

filter parameter

Use the $filter query parameter to retrieve just a subset of a collection. The $filter query parameter can also be used to retrieve relationships like members, memberOf, transitiveMembers, and transitiveMemberOf. For example, get all the security groups I'm a member of.

The following example finds users whose display name starts with the letter 'J':

GET https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/users?$filter=startsWith(displayName,'J')

Support for $filter operators varies across Microsoft Graph APIs. The following logical operators are generally supported:

Operator type Operator
Equality operators
  • Equals (eq)
  • Not equals (ne)
  • Logical negation (not)
  • In (in)
Relational operators
  • Less than (lt)
  • Greater than (gt)
  • Less than or equal to (le)
  • Greater than or equal to (ge)
Lambda operators
  • Any (any)
  • All (all)
Conditional operators
  • And (and)
  • Or (or)
Functions
  • Starts with (startsWith)
  • Ends with (endsWith)
  • Contains (contains)

Note

Support for these operators varies by entity and some properties support $filter only in advanced queries. See the specific entity documentation for details.

Filter using lambda operators

OData defines the any and all operators to evaluate matches on multi-valued properties, that is, either collection of primitive values such as String types or collection of entities.

any operator

The any operator iteratively applies a Boolean expression to each member of a collection and returns true if the expression is true for any member of the collection, otherwise it returns false. The following is the syntax of the any operator:

$filter=param/any(var:var/subparam eq 'value-to-match')

Where

  • param is the property that contains a collection of values or a collection of entities.
  • var:var is a range variable that holds the current element of the collection during iteration. This variable can be named almost anything, for example, adele:adele or x:x.
  • subparam is required when the query applies to a collection of entities. It represents the property of the complex type whose value we are matching.
  • value-to-match represents the member of the collection against which we are matching.

For example, the imAddresses property of the user resource contains a collection of primitive type String. The following query retrieves only users with an imAddress of admin@contoso.com.

GET https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/users?$filter=imAddresses/any(s:s eq 'admin@contoso.com')

The assignedLicenses property of the user resource contains a collection of assignedLicense objects, a complex type with two properties, skuId and disabledPlans. The following query retrieves only users with an assigned license identified by the skuId 184efa21-98c3-4e5d-95ab-d07053a96e67.

GET https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/users?$filter=assignedLicenses/any(s:s/skuId eq 184efa21-98c3-4e5d-95ab-d07053a96e67)

To negate the result of the expression inside the any clause, use the not operator, not the ne operator. For example, the following query retrieves only users who are not assigned the imAddress of admin@contoso.com.

Note

For directory objects like users, the not and ne operators are supported only in advanced queries.

GET https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/users?$filter=NOT(imAddresses/any(s:s eq 'admin@contoso.com'))&$count=true
ConsistencyLevel: eventual

all operator

The all operator applies a Boolean expression to each member of a collection and returns true if the expression is true for all members of the collection, otherwise it returns false. It is not supported by any property.

Examples using the filter query operator

The following table shows some examples that use the $filter query parameter. For more details about $filter syntax, see the OData protocol.

Note

Click the examples to try them in Graph Explorer.

Description Example
Get all users with the name Mary across multiple properties. GET ../users?$filter=startswith(displayName,'mary') or startswith(givenName,'mary') or startswith(surname,'mary') or startswith(mail,'mary') or startswith(userPrincipalName,'mary')
Get all users with mail domain equal to 'hotmail.com' GET ../users?$count=true&$filter=endsWith(mail,'@hotmail.com'). This is an advanced query.
Get all users without assigned licenses GET ../users?$filter=assignedLicenses/$count eq 0&$count=true. This is an advanced query.
Get all the signed-in user's events that start after 7/1/2017. GET ../me/events?$filter=start/dateTime ge '2017-07-01T08:00'.
NOTE: The dateTime property is a String type.
Get all emails from a specific address received by the signed-in user. GET ../me/messages?$filter=from/emailAddress/address eq 'someuser@example.com'
Get all emails received by the signed-in user in April 2017. GET ../me/mailFolders/inbox/messages?$filter=ReceivedDateTime ge 2017-04-01 and receivedDateTime lt 2017-05-01
Get all unread mail in the signed-in user's Inbox. GET ../me/mailFolders/inbox/messages?$filter=isRead eq false
Get all users in the Retail and Sales departments. GET ../users?$filter=department in ('Retail', 'Sales')
List users with a particular service plan that is in a suspended state. GET ../users?$filter=assignedPlans/any(a:a/servicePlanId eq 2e2ddb96-6af9-4b1d-a3f0-d6ecfd22edb2 and a/capabilityStatus eq 'Suspended')&$count=true. This is an advanced query.
List all non-Microsoft 365 groups in an organization. GET ../groups?$filter=NOT groupTypes/any(c:c eq 'Unified')&$count=true. This is an advanced query.
List all users whose company name is not undefined (that is, not a null value) or Microsoft. GET ../users?$filter=companyName ne null and NOT(companyName eq 'Microsoft')&$count=true. This is an advanced query.
List all users whose company name is either undefined or Microsoft. GET ../users?$filter=companyName in (null, 'Microsoft')&$count=true. This is an advanced query.
Use OData cast to get transitive membership in groups with a display name that starts with 'a' including a count of returned objects. GET ../me/transitiveMemberOf/microsoft.graph.group?$count=true&$filter=startswith(displayName, 'a'). This is an advanced query.

format parameter

Use the $format query parameter to specify the media format of the items returned from Microsoft Graph.

For example, the following request returns the users in the organization in the json format:

GET https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/users?$format=json

Note

The $format query parameter supports a number of formats (for example, atom, xml, and json) but results may not be returned in all formats.

orderby parameter

Use the $orderby query parameter to specify the sort order of the items returned from Microsoft Graph. The default order is ascending order.

For example, the following request returns the users in the organization ordered by their display name:

GET https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/users?$orderby=displayName

You can also sort by complex type entities. The following request gets messages and sorts them by the address field of the from property, which is of the complex type emailAddress:

GET https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/messages?$orderby=from/emailAddress/address

To sort the results in ascending or descending order, append either asc or desc to the field name, separated by a space; for example, ?$orderby=name%20desc. If the sort order is not specified, the default (ascending order) is inferred.

With some APIs, you can order results on multiple properties. For example, the following request orders the messages in the user's Inbox, first by the name of the person who sent it in descending order (Z to A), and then by subject in ascending order (default).

GET https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/mailFolders/Inbox/messages?$orderby=from/emailAddress/name desc,subject

Note

When you specify $filter the server will infer a sort order for the results. If you use both $orderby and $filter to get messages, because the server always infers a sort order for the results of a $filter, you must specify properties in certain ways.

The following example shows a query filtered by the subject and importance properties, and then sorted by the subject, importance, and receivedDateTime properties in descending order.

GET https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/messages?$filter=Subject eq 'welcome' and importance eq 'normal'&$orderby=subject,importance,receivedDateTime desc

Note

Combining $orderby and $filter query parameters is supported for directory objects. See Advanced query capabilities in Azure AD directory objects.

search parameter

Use the $search query parameter to restrict the results of a request to match a search criterion. It's syntax and behavior varies from one API operation to another. To see the syntax for $search across different resources, see Use the $search query parameter to match a search criterion.

select parameter

Use the $select query parameter to return a set of properties that are different than the default set for an individual resource or a collection of resources. With $select, you can specify a subset or a superset of the default properties.

For example, when retrieving the messages of the signed-in user, you can specify that only the from and subject properties be returned:

GET https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/messages?$select=from,subject

Important

In general, we recommend that you use $select to limit the properties returned by a query to those needed by your app. This is especially true of queries that might potentially return a large result set. Limiting the properties returned in each row will reduce network load and help improve your app's performance.

In v1.0, some Azure AD resources that derive from directoryObject, like user and group, return a limited, default subset of properties on reads. For these resources, you must use $select to return properties outside of the default set.

skip parameter

Use the $skip query parameter to set the number of items to skip at the start of a collection. For example, the following request returns events for the user sorted by date created, starting with the 21st event in the collection:

GET  https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/events?$orderby=createdDateTime&$skip=20

Note

Some Microsoft Graph APIs, like Outlook Mail and Calendars (message, event, and calendar), use $skip to implement paging. When results of a query span multiple pages, these APIs will return an @odata:nextLink property with a URL that contains a $skip parameter. You can use this URL to return the next page of results. To learn more, see Paging.

The ConsistencyLevel header required for advanced queries against directory objects is not included by default in subsequent page requests. It must be set explicitly in subsequent pages.

skipToken parameter

Some requests return multiple pages of data, either due to server-side paging or due to the use of the $top parameter to limit the page size of the response. Many Microsoft Graph APIs use the skipToken query parameter to reference subsequent pages of the result.
The $skiptoken parameter contains an opaque token that references the next page of results and is returned in the URL provided in the @odata.nextLink property in the response. To learn more, see Paging.

Note

If you're using OData Count (adding $count=true in the query string) for queries against directory objects, the @odata.count property is present only in the first page.

The ConsistencyLevel header required for advanced queries against directory objects is not included by default in subsequent page requests. It must be set explicitly in subsequent pages.

top parameter

Use the $top query parameter to specify the page size of the result set.

If more items remain in the result set, the response body will contain an @odata.nextLink parameter. This parameter contains a URL that you can use to get the next page of results. To learn more, see Paging.

The minimum value of $top is 1 and the maximum depends on the corresponding API.

For example, the following list messages request returns the first five messages in the user's mailbox:

GET https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/messages?$top=5

Note

The ConsistencyLevel header required for advanced queries against directory objects is not included by default in subsequent page requests. It must be set explicitly in subsequent pages.

Error handling for query parameters

Some requests will return an error message if a specified query parameter is not supported. For example, you cannot use $expand on the user/photo relationship.

https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me?$expand=photo
{
    "error":{
        "code":"ExpandNotSupported",
        "message":"Expand is not allowed for property 'Photo' according to the entity schema.",
        "innerError":{
            "request-id":"1653fefd-bc31-484b-bb10-8dc33cb853ec",
            "date":"2017-07-31T20:55:01"
        }
    }
}

However, it is important to note that query parameters specified in a request might fail silently. This can be true for unsupported query parameters as well as for unsupported combinations of query parameters. In these cases, you should examine the data returned by the request to determine whether the query parameters you specified had the desired effect.

See also