Overview of Microsoft Graph

Microsoft Graph is the gateway to data and intelligence in Microsoft 365. It provides a unified programmability model that you can use to access the tremendous amount of data in Office 365, Windows 10, and Enterprise Mobility + Security. Use the wealth of data in Microsoft Graph to build apps for organizations and consumers that interact with millions of users.

Powering the Microsoft 365 platform

Microsoft Graph, Microsoft Graph data connect, and Microsoft Graph connectors enable extending Microsoft 365 experiences and building intelligent apps.

In the Microsoft 365 platform, three main components facilitate the access and flow of data:

  • The Microsoft Graph API offers a single endpoint, https://graph.microsoft.com, to provide access to rich, people-centric data and insights exposed as resources of Microsoft 365 services. You can use REST APIs or SDKs to access the endpoint and build apps that support scenarios spanning across productivity, collaboration, education, security, identity, access, device management, and much more.
  • Microsoft Graph data connect provides a set of tools to streamline secure and scalable delivery of Microsoft Graph data to popular Azure data stores. This cached data serves as data sources for Azure development tools that you can use to build intelligent applications.
  • Microsoft Graph connectors (private preview) works in the incoming direction, delivering external data into Microsoft Graph services and applications and enhancing custom experiences.

Together, the Microsoft Graph API, data connect, and connectors (private preview) power the Microsoft 365 platform. With the ability to access Microsoft Graph data and other datasets to derive insights and analytics, you can extend Microsoft 365 experiences, or build unique, intelligent applications.

Note

Microsoft Graph connectors is in private preview. Participation in the preview program is by invitation only. For more information about the connectors, see Build 2019: Microsoft Graph powers the Microsoft 365 platform.

What's in Microsoft Graph?

Microsoft Graph exposes REST APIs and client libraries to access data on the following Microsoft 365 services:

  • Office 365 services: Delve, Excel, Microsoft Bookings, Microsoft Teams, OneDrive, OneNote, Outlook/Exchange, Planner, and SharePoint
  • Enterprise Mobility and Security services: Advanced Threat Analytics, Advanced Threat Protection, Azure Active Directory, Identity Manager, and Intune
  • Windows 10 services: activities, devices, notifications
  • Dynamics 365 Business Central

To find out more, see Major services and features in Microsoft Graph.

An image showing the primary resources and relationships that are part of the graph

What can you do with Microsoft Graph?

Use Microsoft Graph to build experiences around the user's unique context to help them be more productive. Imagine an app that...

  • Looks at your next meeting and helps you prepare for it by providing profile information for attendees, including their job titles and managers, as well as information about the latest documents they're working on, and people they're collaborating with.
  • Scans your calendar, and suggests the best times for the next team meeting.
  • Fetches the latest sales projection chart from an Excel file in your OneDrive and lets you update the forecast in real time, all from your phone.
  • Subscribes to changes in your calendar, sends you an alert when you’re spending too much time in meetings, and provides recommendations for the ones you can miss or delegate based on how relevant the attendees are to you.
  • Helps you sort out personal and work information on your phone; for example, by categorizing pictures that should go to your personal OneDrive and business receipts that should go to your OneDrive for Business.
  • Analyzes at-scale Office 365 data so that decision makers can unlock valuable insights into time allocation and collaboration patterns that improve business productivity.
  • Brings custom business data into Microsoft Graph, indexing it to make it searchable along with data from Microsoft 365 services.

Pick the first scenario about researching meeting attendees as an example. With the Microsoft Graph API, you can:

  1. Get the email addresses of the meeting event attendees.
  2. Look them up individually as a user in Azure Active Directory to get their profile information.

You can then navigate to other resources using relationships:

Microsoft Graph continues to open up the Microsoft 365 platform for developers, and always only with the appropriate permissions.

Note

When you use the Microsoft Graph API, you agree to the Microsoft APIs Terms of Use and the Microsoft Privacy Statement.

Check out some of these common scenarios for working with the Microsoft Graph API. The links take you to the Graph Explorer.

Operation URL
GET my profile https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me
GET my files https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/drive/root/children
GET my photo https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/photo/$value
GET my mail https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/messages
GET my high importance email https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/messages?$filter=importance%20eq%20'high'
GET my calendar events https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/events
GET my manager https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/manager
GET last user to modify file foo.txt https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/drive/root/children/foo.txt/lastModifiedByUser
GET Office365 groups I’m member of https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/memberOf/$/microsoft.graph.group?$filter=groupTypes/any(a:a%20eq%20'unified')
GET users in my organization https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/users
GET groups in my organization https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/groups
GET people related to me https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/people
GET items trending around me https://graph.microsoft.com/beta/me/insights/trending
GET my notes https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/onenote/notebooks

Access Microsoft Graph data at scale using Microsoft Graph data connect

Microsoft Graph data connect provides a set of tools to access data on Microsoft Graph at scale, while allowing administrators granular consent and full control over their Microsoft Graph data. Data connect streamlines the delivery of this data to Microsoft Azure.

Using Azure tools, you can then build intelligent apps that:

  • Find you the closest expert on a topic to you in your organization
  • Automate knowledge base creation
  • Analyze meeting requests to provide insights into conference room utilization
  • Detect fraud with productivity and communication data

When should I use Microsoft Graph API or data connect?

Microsoft Graph data connect provides a new way for you to interact with the data that's available through Microsoft Graph APIs. Data connect provides a unique set of tools that streamline the building of intelligent applications, all within the Microsoft cloud.

Feature Microsoft Graph API Microsoft Graph data connect
Access scope Single user or entire tenant Many users or groups
Access pattern Real time Recurrent schedule
Data operations Operates on data master Operates on a cache of the data
Data protection Data is protected while in Microsoft 365 Data protection is extended to the cache of data in your Azure subscription
User consent Self
Resource types
None
Admin consent Entire organization
Resource types
Select groups of users
Resource types and properties
Excludes users
Access tools RESTful web queries Azure Data Factory

See Microsoft Graph data connect for more information, and get started using Microsoft Graph data connect.

Next steps