Swagger Express Middleware

Swagger middlware and mocks for Express.js and Node

CORS middleware

Adds the appropriate CORS headers to each request and automatically responds to CORS preflight requests, all in compliance with your Swagger API definition.

If you aren’t familiar with how CORS works, then here’s a good explanation. Don’t worry if it seems really complicated — the CORS middleware handles it all for you.


This example uses the PetStore.yaml sample Swagger API. If you aren’t familiar with using middleware in Express.js, then read this first.

const util = require('util');
const express = require('express');
const createMiddleware = require('swagger-express-middleware');

let app = express();

createMiddleware('PetStore.yaml', app, function(err, middleware) {

    // Show the CORS headers as HTML
    app.use(function(req, res, next) {
        res.send('<pre>' + util.inspect(res._headers) + '</pre>');

    app.listen(8000, function() {
        console.log('Go to http://localhost:8000/pets');

Run the above example and then browse to http://localhost:8000/pets and http://localhost:8000/pets/Fido and http://localhost:8000/pets/Fido/photos. You will see that the HTTP headers are set differently for each URL, based on the Swagger API.

If you use a tool such as Postman or curl to send CORS request headers (e.g. Origin, Access-Control-Request-Method, Access-Control-Request-Headers, etc.), then you’ll notice that the CORS middleware will adjust the corresponding HTTP response headers (e.g. Access-Control-Allow-Origin, Access-Control-Allow-Credentials, Access-Control-Allow-Headers, etc.).


The CORS middleware requires the Metadata middleware to come before it in the middleware pipeline (as shown in the example above).

How CORS headers are set

The CORS middleware automatically sets the following HTTP headers on every request:

Header Name Value Assigned
Access-Control-Allow-Origin If the HTTP request includes an Origin header, then that value is echoed back; otherwise, a wildcard (*) is sent.
Access-Control-Allow-Methods If the HTTP request matches a path in your Swagger API, then the methods defined for that path are returned. If the request doesn’t match a Swagger path, then the Access-Control-Request-Method header is echoed back. If that header is not set, then all HTTP methods are sent.
Access-Control-Allow-Headers If the HTTP request includes an Access-Control-Request-Headers header, then that value is echoed back; otherwise, an empty value is returned.
Access-Control-Allow-Max-Age This header is always set to zero, which means CORS preflight requests will not be cached. This is especially useful for development/debugging, but you may want to set it to a higher value for production.
Access-Control-Allow-Credentials If the Access-Control-Allow-Origin is a wildcard (*), then false is sent; otherwise, true is sent.

NOTE: This behavior is required by the CORS spec. Wildcarded origins cannot allow credentials.
Vary If the Access-Control-Allow-Origin is not a wildcard, then Origin is added to the Vary response header.

NOTE: This behavior is required by the CORS spec. It indicates to clients that server responses will differ based on the value of the Origin request header.

Customizing CORS headers

As shown above, the CORS middleware tries to determine the best value for each CORS header based on the HTTP request from the client and the structure of your Swagger API, but you can override the value for any header if you want.

To override a header’s value, just specify a default value in your Swagger API. You can do this for a specific operation, or for an entire path by using the options operation. For example, in the following Swagger API, the Access-Control-Allow-Headers and Access-Control-Allow-Origin headers have been customized for all operations on the “/pets/{petName}” path, and the Access-Control-Max-Age header has been customized only for the get operation.

        description: CORS headers for all operations
            type: string
            default: http://www.company.com
            type: string
            default: X-UA-Compatible, X-XSS-Protection

        description: CORS header for this operation
            type: number
            default: 60