Run the Quickstart

A quick introduction to how you’ll be building with Plaid Auth.

Introduction

Let’s test out running Plaid locally by cloning the Quickstart app. You’ll need API keys, which you can receive by signing up in the Dashboard.

You'll have two different API keys, and there are three different Plaid environments. Today we'll start in the Sandbox environment. View the API Keys section of the Dashboard to find your Sandbox secret.

API Key
View Keys in Dashboard
client_id
Private identifier for your team
secret
Private key, one for each of the three environments
Environment
Sandbox
Get started with test credentials and life-like data
Development
Build out your app with up to 100 live credentials
Production
Launch your app with unlimited live credentials

Set up the Quickstart

Once you have your API keys, it's time to run Plaid locally! Select both your client-side and server-side preferences to tailor your Quickstart.

1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
git clone https://github.com/plaid/quickstart.git
cd quickstart/node
# Copy the .env.example file to .env, then fill
# out PLAID_CLIENT_ID and PLAID_SECRET in .env
cp .env.example .env
# Install dependencies
npm install
# Start the backend app
./start.sh
2. Visit localhost and log in with Sandbox credentials

Now that you have the Quickstart running, you’ll add your first Item in the Sandbox environment. Once you’ve opened the Quickstart app on localhost, open Link and select any institution. Use the Sandbox credentials to simulate a successful login.

Sandbox credentials
1
2
username: user_good
password: pass_good

How it works

As you might have noticed, you'll be using both your app's server and client to add Plaid to your app. Here is an overview of how you'll be using Plaid.

The Plaid flow begins when your user wants to connect their bank account to your app.
1Make a request to create a link_token and pass the temporary token to your app's client.
2Use the link_token to open Link for your user. In the onSuccess callback, send the temporary public_token to your app's server.
3Make a request to exchange the public_token for a permanent access_token and item_id for the new Item.
4Store the access_token and use it to make product requests for your user's Item.

Be sure to store your access_tokens in order to make API requests for that Item.

Once you’ve successfully added an Item, the Quickstart allows you to simulate API requests. We’ve started the app with auth, so only the Auth product requests will work. Try adding other products to the run script with PLAID_PRODUCTS=auth,transactions,balance to test them out.

Congrats! You’re all ready to dive right in to modifying Quickstart requests.