Web Search API upgrade guide

This upgrade guide identifies the changes between version 5 and version 7 of the Bing Web Search API. Use this guide to help you identify the parts of your application that you need to update to use version 7.

Breaking changes


  • The endpoint's version number changed from v5 to v7. For example, https://api.cognitive.microsoft.com/bing/**v7.0**/search.

Error response objects and error codes

  • All failed requests should now include an ErrorResponse object in the response body.

  • Added the following fields to the Error object.

    • subCode—Partitions the error code into discrete buckets, if possible
    • moreDetails—Additional information about the error described in the message field
  • Replaced the v5 error codes with the following possible code and subCode values.

Code SubCode Description
ServerError UnexpectedError
Bing returns ServerError whenever any of the sub-code conditions occur. The response will include these errors if the HTTP status code is 500.
InvalidRequest ParameterMissing
Bing returns InvalidRequest whenever any part of the request is not valid. For example, a required parameter is missing or a parameter value is not valid.

If the error is ParameterMissing or ParameterInvalidValue, the HTTP status code is 400.

If the error is HttpNotAllowed, the HTTP status code 410.
RateLimitExceeded Bing returns RateLimitExceeded whenever you exceed your queries per second (QPS) or queries per month (QPM) quota.

Bing returns HTTP status code 429 if you exceeded QPS and 403 if you exceeded QPM.
InvalidAuthorization AuthorizationMissing
Bing returns InvalidAuthorization when Bing cannot authenticate the caller. For example, the Ocp-Apim-Subscription-Key header is missing or the subscription key is not valid.

Redundancy occurs if you specify more than one authentication method.

If the error is InvalidAuthorization, the HTTP status code is 401.
InsufficientAuthorization AuthorizationDisabled
Bing returns InsufficientAuthorization when the caller does not have permissions to access the resource. This can occur if the subscription key has been disabled or has expired.

If the error is InsufficientAuthorization, the HTTP status code is 403.
  • The following maps the previous error codes to the new codes. If you've taken a dependency on v5 error codes, update your code accordingly.
Version 5 code Version 7 code.subCode
RequestParameterMissing InvalidRequest.ParameterMissing
RequestParameterInvalidValue InvalidRequest.ParameterInvalidValue
ResourceAccessDenied InsufficientAuthorization
ExceededVolume RateLimitExceeded
ExceededQpsLimit RateLimitExceeded
Disabled InsufficientAuthorization.AuthorizationDisabled
UnexpectedError ServerError.UnexpectedError
DataSourceErrors ServerError.ResourceError
AuthorizationMissing InvalidAuthorization.AuthorizationMissing
HttpNotAllowed InvalidRequest.HttpNotAllowed
UserAgentMissing InvalidRequest.ParameterMissing
NotImplemented ServerError.NotImplemented
InvalidAuthorization InvalidAuthorization
InvalidAuthorizationMethod InvalidAuthorization
MultipleAuthorizationMethod InvalidAuthorization.AuthorizationRedundancy
ExpiredAuthorizationToken InsufficientAuthorization.AuthorizationExpired
InsufficientScope InsufficientAuthorization
Blocked InvalidRequest.Blocked

Non-breaking changes


  • Added the optional Pragma request header. By default, Bing returns cached content, if available. To prevent Bing from returning cached content, set the Pragma header to no-cache (for example, Pragma: no-cache).

Query parameters

  • Added the answerCount query parameter. Use this parameter to specify the number of answers that you want the response to include. The answers are chosen based on ranking. For example, if you set this parameter to three (3), the response includes the top three ranked answers.

  • Added the promote query parameter. Use this parameter along with answerCount to explicitly include one or more answer types, regardless of their ranking. For example, to promote videos and images into the response, you’d set promote to videos,images. The list of answers that you want to promote does not count against the answerCount limit. For example, if answerCount is 2 and promote is set to videos,images, the response might include webpages, news, videos, and images.

Object changes

  • Added the someResultsRemoved field to the WebAnswer object. The field contains a Boolean value that indicates whether the response excluded some results from the web answer.