Building your first Chat app - Part 5: Installing the app in Zendesk Chat

If you followed along in the series, you should now have a working Chat app that you built from scratch. In this tutorial, you'll install the app in your instance of Zendesk Chat. The tutorial will also show you how to validate the app and then package it for uploading.

You can only upload and install private Chat apps on the Zendesk Suite Growth plan or above. The Chat account must also be linked to a Zendesk Support account.

This tutorial is part of a series on building a Zendesk app:

Validating the app

After thoroughly testing your app with the ZCLI server, you can validate that the app is ready for uploading.

To validate your app

  1. In your command line interface, navigate to your learn_more folder.

  2. Run the following command:

    zcli apps:validate

    Note: If the command prompt isn't displayed, make sure you shut down the ZCLI server by pressing Control+C.

  3. Fix any problems reported by the tool, then run validate again.

Packaging the app

The next step is to package the app in a ZIP file that you can upload to your instance of Zendesk Chat.

Package your app

  • Run the following command in your learn_more folder:

    zcli apps:package

ZCLI packages the app in a ZIP file and saves it in a tmp folder in your app root folder.

Uploading and installing the app in Zendesk Chat

At last you're ready to upload and install the app in your instance of Zendesk Chat. You must be on the Zendesk Suite Growth plan or above, and your Chat account must be linked to a Zendesk Support account.

Upload and install the app

  1. Sign in to your Support account, click on the Product Tray, and launch Chat.

  2. In the Chat dashboard, go to Settings > Account > Apps.

  3. Click Upload Private App in the right side of the page.

  4. Enter the name of your app (Learn More).

  5. Click Choose File and select the ZIP file of your app.

    ZCLI placed the ZIP file in the tmp folder in your learn_more folder.

  6. Click Upload to upload the app to Zendesk Chat, then again after agreeing to the risks and limitations.

  7. When prompted, click Install.

    When the process is complete, your app should appear as a private app in your list of installed apps on the page. It should also appear in the chat interface, ready for agents to use.

Next steps

The best way to learn is to plan, design, and build your own apps. You can use any of the following resources along the way:

  • Getting started - A quick overview of the Apps framework
  • Setting up new apps - How to create starter files for your apps with ZCLI or manually
  • Using the Apps framework - A concise developer guide
  • Deploying apps - Information on branding, uploading, and localizing your apps
  • ZAF Client API - A reference of the ZAF JavaScript client
  • ZAF Core API - A reference of core events, actions, and properties available in all locations in all products that support the Zendesk Apps framework
  • ZAF Chat API - A reference of the app locations, properties, and actions you can use in apps running in Zendesk Chat

You can also look for answers or ask questions in the Zendesk Apps framework (ZAF) community.