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External Content Library (ECL) started as mainly a Content Manager-side extension mechanism with the ability to publish references or external items directly to Content Delivery.

However, in later versions and with the Tridion Integration Framework, ECL now has Content Delivery-side elements where I believe ECL items can be retrieved through the (GraphQL) Content API.

Is that a correct description?

And is there an ability to search for ECL items through CD? Or is ECL search only available in the CM?

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I would say that ECL is still a Content Manager extension mechanism.

However, nowadays it is built upon the Connector Framework, which is used both on the CM-side and on the CD-side (Connectors are cross-platform and can run both on CM-side and CD-side).

On the CD-side there is a so-called "PCA extension" (for the Content Service) which allows you to query Connectors using GraphQL.

However, you can also communicate directly to a Connector using the Connector Framework API. The Connector Framework supports many capabilities, including search functionality, but it depends on the Connector whether these capabilities are implemented or not.

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