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Changes to Lucene are only persisted to disk during a Lucene commit, which is a relatively expensive operation and so cannot be performed after every index or delete operation. Changes that happen after one commit and before another will be removed from the index by Lucene in the event of process exit or hardware failure.
Because Lucene commits are too expensive to perform on every individual change, each shard copy also has a transaction log known as its translog associated with it. All index and delete operations are written to the translog after being processed by the internal Lucene index but before they are acknowledged. In the event of a crash, recent transactions that have been acknowledged but not yet included in the last Lucene commit can instead be recovered from the translog when the shard recovers.
An Elasticsearch flush is the process of performing a Lucene commit and starting a new translog. Flushes are performed automatically in the background in order to make sure the translog doesn’t grow too large, which would make replaying its operations take a considerable amount of time during recovery. The ability to perform a flush manually is also exposed through an API, although this is rarely needed.
The data in the translog is only persisted to disk when the translog is
fsynced and committed. In the event of hardware failure, any data written
since the previous translog commit will be lost.
By default, Elasticsearch
fsyncs and commits the translog every 5 seconds
index.translog.durability is set to
async or if set to
(default) at the end of every index, delete,
update, or bulk request. More precisely, if set
request, Elasticsearch will only report success of an index, delete,
update, or bulk request to the client after the translog has been successfully
fsynced and committed on the primary and on every allocated replica.
The following dynamically updatable per-index settings control the behaviour of the translog:
- How often the translog is
fsynced to disk and committed, regardless of write operations. Defaults to
5s. Values less than
100msare not allowed.
Whether or not to
fsyncand commit the translog after every index, delete, update, or bulk request. This setting accepts the following parameters:
fsyncand commit after every request. In the event of hardware failure, all acknowledged writes will already have been committed to disk.
fsyncand commit in the background every
sync_interval. In the event of hardware failure, all acknowledged writes since the last automatic commit will be discarded.
- The translog stores all operations that are not yet safely persisted in Lucene
(i.e., are not part of a Lucene commit point). Although these operations are
available for reads, they will need to be reindexed if the shard was to
shutdown and has to be recovered. This settings controls the maximum total size
of these operations, to prevent recoveries from taking too long. Once the
maximum size has been reached a flush will happen, generating a new Lucene
commit point. Defaults to
- The total size of translog files to keep. Keeping more translog files increases
the chance of performing an operation based sync when recovering replicas. If
the translog files are not sufficient, replica recovery will fall back to a
file based sync. Defaults to
- The maximum duration for which translog files will be kept. Defaults to
In some cases (a bad drive, user error) the translog on a shard copy can become corrupted. When this corruption is detected by Elasticsearch due to mismatching checksums, Elasticsearch will fail that shard copy and refuse to use that copy of the data. If there are other copies of the shard available then Elasticsearch will automatically recover from one of them using the normal shard allocation and recovery mechanism. In particular, if the corrupt shard copy was the primary when the corruption was detected then one of its replicas will be promoted in its place.
If there is no copy of the data from which Elasticsearch can recover
successfully, a user may want to recover the data that is part of the shard at
the cost of losing the data that is currently contained in the translog. We
provide a command-line tool for this,
elasticsearch-translog tool should not be run while Elasticsearch is
running, and you will permanently lose the documents that were contained only in
In order to run the
elasticsearch-translog tool, specify the
subcommand as well as the directory for the corrupted translog with the
$ bin/elasticsearch-translog truncate -d /var/lib/elasticsearchdata/nodes/0/indices/P45vf_YQRhqjfwLMUvSqDw/0/translog/ Checking existing translog files !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ! WARNING: Elasticsearch MUST be stopped before running this tool ! ! ! ! WARNING: Documents inside of translog files will be lost ! ! ! ! WARNING: The following files will be DELETED! ! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! --> data/nodes/0/indices/P45vf_YQRhqjfwLMUvSqDw/0/translog/translog-41.ckp --> data/nodes/0/indices/P45vf_YQRhqjfwLMUvSqDw/0/translog/translog-6.ckp --> data/nodes/0/indices/P45vf_YQRhqjfwLMUvSqDw/0/translog/translog-37.ckp --> data/nodes/0/indices/P45vf_YQRhqjfwLMUvSqDw/0/translog/translog-24.ckp --> data/nodes/0/indices/P45vf_YQRhqjfwLMUvSqDw/0/translog/translog-11.ckp Continue and DELETE files? [y/N] y Reading translog UUID information from Lucene commit from shard at [data/nodes/0/indices/P45vf_YQRhqjfwLMUvSqDw/0/index] Translog Generation: 3 Translog UUID : AxqC4rocTC6e0fwsljAh-Q Removing existing translog files Creating new empty checkpoint at [data/nodes/0/indices/P45vf_YQRhqjfwLMUvSqDw/0/translog/translog.ckp] Creating new empty translog at [data/nodes/0/indices/P45vf_YQRhqjfwLMUvSqDw/0/translog/translog-3.tlog] Done.
You can also use the
-h option to get a list of all options and parameters
elasticsearch-translog tool supports.