Top Children Queryedit

Warning

Deprecated in 1.6.0.

Use the has_child query instead

The top_children query runs the child query with an estimated hits size, and out of the hit docs, aggregates it into parent docs. If there aren’t enough parent docs matching the requested from/size search request, then it is run again with a wider (more hits) search.

The top_children also provide scoring capabilities, with the ability to specify max, sum or avg as the score type.

One downside of using the top_children is that if there are more child docs matching the required hits when executing the child query, then the total_hits result of the search response will be incorrect.

How many hits are asked for in the first child query run is controlled using the factor parameter (defaults to 5). For example, when asking for 10 parent docs (with from set to 0), then the child query will execute with 50 hits expected. If not enough parents are found (in our example 10), and there are still more child docs to query, then the child search hits are expanded by multiplying by the incremental_factor (defaults to 2).

The required parameters are the query and type (the child type to execute the query on). Here is an example with all different parameters, including the default values:

{
    "top_children" : {
        "type": "blog_tag",
        "query" : {
            "term" : {
                "tag" : "something"
            }
        },
        "score" : "max",
        "factor" : 5,
        "incremental_factor" : 2
    }
}

Scopeedit

A _scope can be defined on the query allowing to run facets on the same scope name that will work against the child documents. For example:

{
    "top_children" : {
        "_scope" : "my_scope",
        "type": "blog_tag",
        "query" : {
            "term" : {
                "tag" : "something"
            }
        }
    }
}

Memory Considerationsedit

In order to support parent-child joins, all of the (string) parent IDs must be resident in memory (in the field data cache. Additionally, every child document is mapped to its parent using a long value (approximately). It is advisable to keep the string parent ID short in order to reduce memory usage.

You can check how much memory is being used by the ID cache using the indices stats or nodes stats APIS, eg:

curl -XGET "http://localhost:9200/_stats/id_cache?pretty&human"