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Activate the Google Maps Time Zone API

To get you started we'll guide you through the Google Developers Console to do a few things first:

  1. Create or choose a project
  2. Activate the Google Maps Time Zone API
  3. Create appropriate keys
Continue

Get API Key

To use the Google Maps Time Zone API, you must register your app project on the Google API Console and get a Google API key which you can add to your app or website.

Quick guide to getting a key

Step 1: Get an API Key from the Google API Console

Click the button below, which guides you through the process of registering a project in the Google API Console, activates the Google Maps Time Zone API automatically, and generates a generic, unrestricted API key.

Get a Key

Notes:

  • Tip: During development and testing, you can register a project for testing purposes in the Google API Console and use a generic, unrestricted API key. When you are ready to move your app or website into production, register a separate project for production, create a server-restricted API key, and add the key to your application.
  • Premium Plan customers: For production-ready apps, you must use a server-restricted API key that is set up in the Google Maps APIs Premium Plan project created for you when you purchased the Premium Plan. Alternatively, you can authenticate your application using use a client ID and digital signature (instead of an API key).
  • For more information, see the detailed guides below for Standard Plan and Premium Plan customers.

Step 2: Add the API key to your application

When loading the Google Maps Time Zone API, substitute YOUR_API_KEY in the code below with the API key you got from the previous step.

https://maps.googleapis.com/maps/api/timezone/json?location=39.6034810,-119.6822510&timestamp=1331161200&key=YOUR_API_KEY

More about API keys

  • The API key allows you to monitor your application's API usage in the Google API Console. See Google API Console help for more information.
  • If you are a Standard Plan customer, with an API key you have access to generous free daily quota, as well as the option to increase your daily quota by enabling pay-as-you-go billing.
  • If you are a Premium Plan customer, you must use an API key or your client ID to access all the custom features and benefits of your Premium Plan.
  • Registering for an API key ensures that Google can contact you about your application if necessary.

Detailed guide for users of the standard Google Maps Time Zone API

Follow these steps to get an API key:

  1. Go to the Google API Console.
  2. Create or select a project.
  3. Click Continue to enable the API.
  4. On the Credentials page, get an API key.
    Note: If you have an existing unrestricted API key, or a key with server restrictions, you may use that key.
  5. From the dialog displaying the API key, select Restrict key to set a server restriction on the API key.
  6. In the Key restriction section, select 'IP addresses (web servers, cron jobs, etc.), follow the on-screen instructions to add server IP addresses, then click Save. Read more about restricting API keys.
  7. (Optional) Enable billing. See Usage Limits for more information.


In the Google API Console, you can also look up an existing key or view a list of enabled APIs.

For more information on using the Google API Console, see API Console Help.

Detailed guide for users of the Google Maps APIs Premium Plan license

When using the Google Maps Time Zone API with a Google Maps APIs Premium Plan license, you must authenticate your application with either an API key, or a client ID and digital signature.
Note: If you have a previous Maps API for Business license, you must use a client ID, not an API key.

Choosing an authentication method for your application

The section below provides a summary of the various tools and reports that are available to Premium Plan customers, based on the method you choose to authenticate your application.

  • Authentication using an API key
    (Note: Customers with a current Premium Plan license may use an API key, but customers holding a previous Maps API for Business license must use a client ID.)
    By using an API key to authenticate your applications, you can:
  • Authentication using a client ID and digital signature
    By using your client ID and digital signature (instead of an API key) to authenticate your application, you can:
    • Add the channel parameter to requests so you can view more detailed usage reports.
    • View usage reports with more than 30 days of data in the Google Cloud Support Portal.
    • Use Maps Analytics tools for the Maps JavaScript API.

Get more information on reports available to Premium Plan customers.

Note: The information below on using an API key applies only to the Google Maps APIs Premium Plan, which became available on January 6, 2016.

Have a previous Maps APIs for Work or Maps API for Business license? See our Maps APIs for Work Licenses guide. To determine whether you have a previous license: In the Google Cloud Support Portal, click Maps: Usage Report on the left. If the ID at the top of the report is in the following format, you have the new Premium Plan:
gme-[company] & proj-[number] ([type])
Otherwise, you have a previous license.

Authenticating your application using an API key

Follow these steps to get an API key:

  1. Go to the Google API Console.
  2. From the Project drop-down menu, select the project created for you when you purchased the Premium Plan. The project name starts with Google Maps APIs for Business or Google Maps for Work or Google Maps.
    Important: If you have a previous Maps API for Business license, you must use a client ID, not an API key.
  3. Click Continue.
  4. On the Credentials page, get an API key.
    Note: If you have an existing unrestricted API key, or a key with server restrictions, you may use that key.
  5. From the dialog displaying the API key, select Restrict key to set a server restriction on the API key.
  6. In the Key restriction section, select IP addresses (web servers, cron jobs, etc.), follow the on-screen instructions to add server IP addresses, then click Save. Read more about restricting API keys.

You can also look up an existing key in the Google API Console.

For more information on using the Google API Console, see API Console Help.

Authenticating your application using a client ID and digital signature

Upon purchasing your Google Maps APIs Premium Plan license, you will receive a welcome email from Google that contains your client ID and your private cryptographic key.
Read more about the cryptographic key which you can use to generate a unique digital signature.

You must use both the client ID and unique digital signature to authenticate the Time Zone API.

The code example below shows you the client and signature parameters to which you must pass your client ID and unique digital signature.

    https://maps.googleapis.com/maps/api/timezone/json
      ?location=39.6034810,-119.6822510
      &timestamp=1331161200
      &client=YOUR_CLIENT_ID
      &signature=SIGNATURE

Notes:

  • As an option, you can use the channel parameter when authenticating the Google Maps Time Zone API using a client ID and digital signature to receive detailed usage reports. Refer the Premium Plan Reporting Overview for more information.
  • If you were previously using an API key for authentication and are switching to using a client ID, you must remove the key parameter from your requests. Google Maps APIs web services will deny requests made with both a client ID and an API key.

Generating a digital signature

Requests to the Time Zone API by Google Maps APIs Premium Plan customers require a digital signature that you can generate using the private cryptographic key provided to you in your welcome email.

Follow the steps below to generate a digital signature for your request.

  1. Construct the request URL without the signature, making sure to include your client parameter. Note that any non-standard characters will need to be URL-encoded:

    https://maps.googleapis.com/maps/api/timezone/json?location=39.6034810,-119.6822510&timestamp=1331161200&client=clientID

    Note: All Google services require UTF-8 character encoding (which implicitly includes ASCII). If your applications operate using other character sets, make sure they construct URLs using UTF-8 and properly URL-encode them.

  2. Strip off the domain portion of the request, leaving only the path and the query:

    /maps/api/timezone/json?location=39.6034810,-119.6822510&timestamp=1331161200&client=clientID

  3. Retrieve your private key, which is encoded in a modified Base64 for URLs, and sign the URL above using the HMAC-SHA1 algorithm. You may need to decode this key into its original binary format. Note that in most cryptographic libraries, the resulting signature will be in binary format.

    Note: Modified Base64 for URLs replaces the + and / characters of standard Base64 with - and _ respectively, so that these Base64 signatures no longer need to be URL-encoded.

  4. Encode the resulting binary signature using the modified Base64 for URLs to convert this signature into something that can be passed within a URL.

  5. Attach this signature to the URL within a signature parameter:

    https://maps.googleapis.com/maps/api/timezone/json?location=39.6034810,-119.6822510&timestamp=1331161200&client=clientID&signature=base64signature

Notes:

  • The unique signature allows our servers to verify that any site generating requests using your client ID are authorized to do so. The signature is also unique per URL, ensuring that requests that use your client ID cannot be modified without requiring a new signature to be generated.
  • Attempting to access the Time Zone API with an invalid signature will result in a HTTP 403 (Forbidden) error. As you convert your applications to use URL signing, make sure to test your signatures to ensure they initiate a valid request. You should first test whether the original URL is valid as well as test whether you generate the correct signatures.
  • For samples showing ways to implement URL signing using server-side code, see Sample code for URL signing.

To sign a URL now, enter your URL and your URL signing secret below. The URL must have the format described in step 1 above, and be URL-encoded.

Sample code for URL signing

The following sections show ways to implement URL signing using server-side code. URLs should always be signed server-side to avoid exposing your cryptographic key to users.

Python

The example below uses standard Python libraries to sign a URL. (Download the code.)

#!/usr/bin/python
# -*- coding: utf-8 -*-
""" Signs a URL using a URL signing secret """

import hashlib
import hmac
import base64
import urlparse

def sign_url(input_url=None, secret=None):
  """ Sign a request URL with a URL signing secret.

      Usage:
      from urlsigner import sign_url

      signed_url = sign_url(input_url=my_url, secret=SECRET)

      Args:
      input_url - The URL to sign
      secret    - Your URL signing secret

      Returns:
      The signed request URL
  """

  if not input_url or not secret:
    raise Exception("Both input_url and secret are required")

  url = urlparse.urlparse(input_url)

  # We only need to sign the path+query part of the string
  url_to_sign = url.path + "?" + url.query

  # Decode the private key into its binary format
  # We need to decode the URL-encoded private key
  decoded_key = base64.urlsafe_b64decode(secret)

  # Create a signature using the private key and the URL-encoded
  # string using HMAC SHA1. This signature will be binary.
  signature = hmac.new(decoded_key, url_to_sign, hashlib.sha1)

  # Encode the binary signature into base64 for use within a URL
  encoded_signature = base64.urlsafe_b64encode(signature.digest())

  original_url = url.scheme + "://" + url.netloc + url.path + "?" + url.query

  # Return signed URL
  return original_url + "&signature=" + encoded_signature

if __name__ == "__main__":
  input_url = raw_input("URL to Sign: ")
  secret = raw_input("URL signing secret: ")
  print "Signed URL: " + sign_url(input_url, secret)

Java

The example below uses the java.util.Base64 class available since JDK 1.8 - older versions may need to use Apache Commons or similar. (Download the code.)

import java.io.IOException;
import java.io.UnsupportedEncodingException;
import java.net.URI;
import java.net.URISyntaxException;
import java.security.InvalidKeyException;
import java.security.NoSuchAlgorithmException;
import java.util.Base64;  // JDK 1.8 only - older versions may need to use Apache Commons or similar.
import javax.crypto.Mac;
import javax.crypto.spec.SecretKeySpec;
import java.net.URL;
import java.io.BufferedReader;
import java.io.InputStreamReader;

public class UrlSigner {

  // Note: Generally, you should store your private key someplace safe
  // and read them into your code

  private static String keyString = "YOUR_PRIVATE_KEY";
  
  // The URL shown in these examples is a static URL which should already
  // be URL-encoded. In practice, you will likely have code
  // which assembles your URL from user or web service input
  // and plugs those values into its parameters.
  private static String urlString = "YOUR_URL_TO_SIGN";

  // This variable stores the binary key, which is computed from the string (Base64) key
  private static byte[] key;
  
  public static void main(String[] args) throws IOException,
    InvalidKeyException, NoSuchAlgorithmException, URISyntaxException {
    
    BufferedReader input = new BufferedReader(new InputStreamReader(System.in));
    
    String inputUrl, inputKey = null;

    // For testing purposes, allow user input for the URL.
    // If no input is entered, use the static URL defined above.    
    System.out.println("Enter the URL (must be URL-encoded) to sign: ");
    inputUrl = input.readLine();
    if (inputUrl.equals("")) {
      inputUrl = urlString;
    }
    
    // Convert the string to a URL so we can parse it
    URL url = new URL(inputUrl);
 
    // For testing purposes, allow user input for the private key.
    // If no input is entered, use the static key defined above.   
    System.out.println("Enter the Private key to sign the URL: ");
    inputKey = input.readLine();
    if (inputKey.equals("")) {
      inputKey = keyString;
    }
    
    UrlSigner signer = new UrlSigner(inputKey);
    String request = signer.signRequest(url.getPath(),url.getQuery());
    
    System.out.println("Signed URL :" + url.getProtocol() + "://" + url.getHost() + request);
  }
  
  public UrlSigner(String keyString) throws IOException {
    // Convert the key from 'web safe' base 64 to binary
    keyString = keyString.replace('-', '+');
    keyString = keyString.replace('_', '/');
    System.out.println("Key: " + keyString);
    // Base64 is JDK 1.8 only - older versions may need to use Apache Commons or similar.
    this.key = Base64.getDecoder().decode(keyString);
  }

  public String signRequest(String path, String query) throws NoSuchAlgorithmException,
    InvalidKeyException, UnsupportedEncodingException, URISyntaxException {
    
    // Retrieve the proper URL components to sign
    String resource = path + '?' + query;
    
    // Get an HMAC-SHA1 signing key from the raw key bytes
    SecretKeySpec sha1Key = new SecretKeySpec(key, "HmacSHA1");

    // Get an HMAC-SHA1 Mac instance and initialize it with the HMAC-SHA1 key
    Mac mac = Mac.getInstance("HmacSHA1");
    mac.init(sha1Key);

    // compute the binary signature for the request
    byte[] sigBytes = mac.doFinal(resource.getBytes());

    // base 64 encode the binary signature
    // Base64 is JDK 1.8 only - older versions may need to use Apache Commons or similar.
    String signature = Base64.getEncoder().encodeToString(sigBytes);
    
    // convert the signature to 'web safe' base 64
    signature = signature.replace('+', '-');
    signature = signature.replace('/', '_');
    
    return resource + "&signature=" + signature;
  }
}

C#

The example below uses the default System.Security.Cryptography library to sign a URL request. Note that we need to convert the default Base64 encoding to implement a URL-safe version. (Download the code.)

using System;
using System.Collections.Generic;
using System.Security.Cryptography;
using System.Text;
using System.Text.RegularExpressions;
using System.Web;

namespace SignUrl {

  public struct GoogleSignedUrl {

    public static string Sign(string url, string keyString) {
      ASCIIEncoding encoding = new ASCIIEncoding();

      // converting key to bytes will throw an exception, need to replace '-' and '_' characters first.
      string usablePrivateKey = keyString.Replace("-", "+").Replace("_", "/");
      byte[] privateKeyBytes = Convert.FromBase64String(usablePrivateKey);

      Uri uri = new Uri(url);
      byte[] encodedPathAndQueryBytes = encoding.GetBytes(uri.LocalPath + uri.Query);

      // compute the hash
      HMACSHA1 algorithm = new HMACSHA1(privateKeyBytes);
      byte[] hash = algorithm.ComputeHash(encodedPathAndQueryBytes);

      // convert the bytes to string and make url-safe by replacing '+' and '/' characters
      string signature = Convert.ToBase64String(hash).Replace("+", "-").Replace("/", "_");
            
      // Add the signature to the existing URI.
      return uri.Scheme+"://"+uri.Host+uri.LocalPath + uri.Query +"&signature=" + signature;
    }
  }

  class Program {

    static void Main() {
    
      // Note: Generally, you should store your private key someplace safe
      // and read them into your code

      const string keyString = "YOUR_PRIVATE_KEY";
  
      // The URL shown in these examples is a static URL which should already
      // be URL-encoded. In practice, you will likely have code
      // which assembles your URL from user or web service input
      // and plugs those values into its parameters.
      const  string urlString = "YOUR_URL_TO_SIGN";
      
      string inputUrl = null;
      string inputKey = null;
    
      Console.WriteLine("Enter the URL (must be URL-encoded) to sign: ");
      inputUrl = Console.ReadLine();
      if (inputUrl.Length == 0) {
        inputUrl = urlString;
      }     
    
      Console.WriteLine("Enter the Private key to sign the URL: ");
      inputKey = Console.ReadLine();
      if (inputKey.Length == 0) {
        inputKey = keyString;
      }
      
      Console.WriteLine(GoogleSignedUrl.Sign(inputUrl,inputKey));
    }
  }
}

For testing purposes, you can test the following URL and private key to see if it generates the correct signature. Note that this private key is purely for testing purposes and will not be validated by any Google services.

  • URL: https://maps.googleapis.com/maps/api/geocode/json?address=New+York&client=clientID
  • Private Key: vNIXE0xscrmjlyV-12Nj_BvUPaw=
  • URL Portion to Sign: /maps/api/geocode/json?address=New+York&client=clientID
  • Signature: chaRF2hTJKOScPr-RQCEhZbSzIE=
  • Full Signed URL: https://maps.googleapis.com/maps/api/geocode/json?address=New+York&client=clientID&signature=chaRF2hTJKOScPr-RQCEhZbSzIE=

Examples in additional languages

Examples that cover more languages are available in the url-signing project.

More about your private cryptographic key

Your private cryptographic URL-signing key will be issued with your client ID and is a "secret shared key" between you and Google. This signing key is yours alone and is unique to your client ID. For that reason, please keep your signing key secure. This key should not be passed within any requests, stored on any websites, or posted to any public forum. Anyone obtaining this signing key could spoof requests using your identity.

Note: This private cryptographic signing key is not the same as the API keys issued by the Google API Console.

If you've lost your private cryptographic key, log in to the Google Cloud Support Portal and click Maps: Manage Client ID to retrieve it.

Restricting an API key

Google Maps APIs are available via HTTP web services, for web browsers, and Android or iOS apps. APIs in any platform can use a generic (unrestricted) API key. You can optionally add a restriction (for example, IP addresses) to the API key. Once restricted, a key will only work on platforms that support that type of restriction.

Tip: Before moving your app or website to production, you should secure your API key. Keys for the Google Maps Time Zone API use the IP addresses (web servers, cron jobs, etc.) key restriction. Learn more about keys and credentials.

To add server restrictions to an existing, generic API key, do the following:

  1. Go to the Credentials page of the Google API Console.
  2. Select the project that contains the API key you want to edit.
  3. On the Credentials page, from the list of API keys, select the name of the API key to edit the details of the key.
  4. In the Key restriction section of the page, select IP addresses (web servers, cron jobs, etc.), follow the on-screen instructions to add server IP addresses, then click Save.

Troubleshooting authentication issues

If your request is malformed or supplies an invalid signature, the Google Maps Time Zone API returns an HTTP 403 (Forbidden) error.

To troubleshoot individual URLs, you can use the URL Signing Debugger. It allows you to quickly validate a URL and signature generated by your application.

Alternatively, Google Maps APIs Premium Plan customers can troubleshoot individual URLs by logging in to the Google Cloud Support Portal and selecting Resources > Google Maps APIs Premium Plan online tools > URL Signing Debugger for Web Service and Image APIs.

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