What is the easiest way to get a custom label from outside the platform (eg: node js or other app)?

I'm using nforce, but surprisingly don't see any api methods to get custom labels.

2 Answers 2


A quick glance at the nforce source makes it appear to not have support for fetching custom labels.

I can't see a way to fetch custom labels via the REST API either, nor can I find any references to custom labels in the SOAP API. Based on that I don't believe labels are readily useable off-platform without something like a custom apex REST/SOAP service (although there are complications as you can't fetch labels dynamically in apex) or by processing the CustomLabels.labels XML file from the metadata API.

However I have to ask you to clarify, do you mean the custom labels defined in the Setup > Create > Custom Labels menu, or the user friendly text for things like SObject fields?

  • Yes I'm talking about the Setup>Create>Custom Labels
    – NSjonas
    Mar 12, 2014 at 16:58

I can't believe they still haven't added this to the rest API. You can now access classes and tons of other meta-data but still no custom labels.

I've written a custom REST resource to allow this (as sfdcfox suggested). It uses the VF page getContent() hack which can be explained in more detail here.

VisualForce Page:

<apex:page controller="DynamicCustomLabel" contentType="application/json" showHeader="false" sidebar="false"
    language="{!lang}" standardStylesheets="false">{!$Label[name]}</apex:page>

Page Controller:

public class DynamicCustomLabel {
    public String lang {get;set;}
    public String name {get;set;}

    public  DynamicCustomLabel(){
       Map<String, String> reqParams = ApexPages.currentPage().getParameters();
       lang = reqParams.get('lang');
       name = reqParams.get('name');

Rest Resource:

global with sharing class DynamicCustomLabelResource  {

    global static String getLabel() {
        RestRequest req = RestContext.request;
        String name = req.params.get('name');
        String lang = req.params.get('lang');
            return getLabel(name, lang);
        }catch(Exception e){
            RestContext.response.statusCode = 404;
            return '';

    public static  String getLabel(String labelName, String language){
        Pagereference r = Page.DynamicCustomLabel;
        r.getParameters().put('lang', language);
        r.getParameters().put('name', labelName);
        String labelValue = r.getContent().toString();
        return labelValue;

Calling it:

[HOST]/services/apexrest/customlabel?name=MyCustomLabel [HOST]/services/apexrest/customlabel?name=MyCustomLabel&lang=EN

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