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Is there a way to query the user id given a certain user display name? What about the other way around?

The display name can be changed any time, so the id seem to be the better solution to identify an account. Is it possible to link to the user page by id? (Something like

asked 22 Nov '11, 15:22

bastik's gravatar image

accept rate: 41%

Is there anything new on that topic. Is it still impossible to get a user name from its uid?

(03 Jun '14, 14:03) pgiraud

See new answer from me below.

(03 Jun '14, 14:47) SimonPoole ♦

Since this has been nudged to the top of the list again, I might as well explain how I've always done it :)

  • From a user page, click "edits".
  • Click the first changset in the list
  • Scroll down and click "changeset XML"
  • Read the "uid" from that XML - there will be a line with uid="somethingorother" near the top.
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answered 08 May '20, 23:59

SomeoneElse's gravatar image

SomeoneElse ♦
accept rate: 16%

The API has supported a call with the UID as argument for quite a while now. The call returns user information including the user name:

This will naturally only give you the current mapping uid->user name and not historic ones.

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answered 03 Jun '14, 14:47

SimonPoole's gravatar image

SimonPoole ♦
accept rate: 18%

edited 03 Jun '14, 15:17

Can't open the link?

(27 Jun '15, 01:37) marla729
(27 Jun '15, 07:05) BCNorwich

Link Simon gave returns "Couldn't find a file/directory/API operation by that name". Link BCNorwich gave is just the normal profile link.

(08 May '20, 21:06) Richlv

You are slightly, that is 5 years, late :-)

(08 May '20, 21:27) SimonPoole ♦

Yes an UID is better. On Odbl here, they might as well have cumulated the merits for the same UID !!!

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answered 14 Sep '12, 20:45

GentilPapou's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%


This doesn't seem to answer the question, though (and the website is gone by now).

(08 May '20, 21:07) Richlv

Do bear in mind that user names can change. If you want to do a search (by current or by historical name or by ID) you can use .

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answered 03 Jun '14, 19:00

SomeoneElse's gravatar image

SomeoneElse ♦
accept rate: 16%

You can't link by id (as Gnonthgol says), but if you want to find an id from a given display name, go to that user's edits page, select a changeset from the list, then view the Changeset XML to find the uid.

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answered 22 Nov '11, 16:10

EdLoach's gravatar image

EdLoach ♦
accept rate: 22%

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question asked: 22 Nov '11, 15:22

question was seen: 26,350 times

last updated: 08 May '20, 23:59

NOTICE: is no longer in use from 1st March 2024. Please use the OpenStreetMap Community Forum