Bulk API

Performs multiple indexing or delete operations in a single API call. This reduces overhead and can greatly increase indexing speed.

POST _bulk
{ "index" : { "_index" : "test", "_id" : "1" } }
{ "field1" : "value1" }
{ "delete" : { "_index" : "test", "_id" : "2" } }
{ "create" : { "_index" : "test", "_id" : "3" } }
{ "field1" : "value3" }
{ "update" : {"_id" : "1", "_index" : "test"} }
{ "doc" : {"field2" : "value2"} }

Request

POST /_bulk

POST /<index>/_bulk

Description

Provides a way to perform multiple index, create, delete, and update actions in a single request.

The actions are specified in the request body using a newline delimited JSON (NDJSON) structure:

action_and_meta_data\n
optional_source\n
action_and_meta_data\n
optional_source\n
....
action_and_meta_data\n
optional_source\n

The index and create actions expect a source on the next line, and have the same semantics as the op_type parameter in the standard index API: create fails if a document with the same name already exists in the index, index adds or replaces a document as necessary.

update expects that the partial doc, upsert, and script and its options are specified on the next line.

delete does not expect a source on the next line and has the same semantics as the standard delete API.

The final line of data must end with a newline character \n. Each newline character may be preceded by a carriage return \r. When sending requests to the _bulk endpoint, the Content-Type header should be set to application/x-ndjson.

Because this format uses literal \n's as delimiters, make sure that the JSON actions and sources are not pretty printed.

If you specify an index in the request URI, it is used for any actions that don’t explicitly specify an index.

A note on the format: The idea here is to make processing of this as fast as possible. As some of the actions are redirected to other shards on other nodes, only action_meta_data is parsed on the receiving node side.

Client libraries using this protocol should try and strive to do something similar on the client side, and reduce buffering as much as possible.

The response to a bulk action is a large JSON structure with the individual results of each action performed, in the same order as the actions that appeared in the request. The failure of a single action does not affect the remaining actions.

There is no "correct" number of actions to perform in a single bulk request. Experiment with different settings to find the optimal size for your particular workload.

When using the HTTP API, make sure that the client does not send HTTP chunks, as this will slow things down.

Client support for bulk requests

Some of the officially supported clients provide helpers to assist with bulk requests and reindexing of documents from one index to another:

Submitting bulk requests with cURL

If you’re providing text file input to curl, you must use the --data-binary flag instead of plain -d. The latter doesn’t preserve newlines. Example:

$ cat requests
{ "index" : { "_index" : "test", "_id" : "1" } }
{ "field1" : "value1" }
$ curl -s -H "Content-Type: application/x-ndjson" -XPOST localhost:9200/_bulk --data-binary "@requests"; echo
{"took":7, "errors": false, "items":[{"index":{"_index":"test","_type":"_doc","_id":"1","_version":1,"result":"created","forced_refresh":false}}]}
Optimistic Concurrency Control

Each index and delete action within a bulk API call may include the if_seq_no and if_primary_term parameters in their respective action and meta data lines. The if_seq_no and if_primary_term parameters control how operations are executed, based on the last modification to existing documents. See Optimistic concurrency control for more details.

Versioning

Each bulk item can include the version value using the version field. It automatically follows the behavior of the index / delete operation based on the _version mapping. It also support the version_type (see versioning).

Routing

Each bulk item can include the routing value using the routing field. It automatically follows the behavior of the index / delete operation based on the _routing mapping.

Wait For Active Shards

When making bulk calls, you can set the wait_for_active_shards parameter to require a minimum number of shard copies to be active before starting to process the bulk request. See here for further details and a usage example.

Refresh

Control when the changes made by this request are visible to search. See refresh.

Only the shards that receive the bulk request will be affected by refresh. Imagine a _bulk?refresh=wait_for request with three documents in it that happen to be routed to different shards in an index with five shards. The request will only wait for those three shards to refresh. The other two shards that make up the index do not participate in the _bulk request at all.

Security

See URL-based access control.

Partial responses

To ensure fast responses, the bulk API will respond with partial results if one or more shards fail. See Shard failures for more information.

Path parameters

<index>
(Optional, string) Name of the index to perform the bulk actions against.

Query parameters

pipeline
(Optional, string) ID of the pipeline to use to preprocess incoming documents.
refresh
(Optional, enum) If true, Elasticsearch refreshes the affected shards to make this operation visible to search, if wait_for then wait for a refresh to make this operation visible to search, if false do nothing with refreshes. Valid values: true, false, wait_for. Default: false.
routing
(Optional, string) Target the specified primary shard.
_source
(Optional, string) True or false to return the _source field or not, or a list of fields to return.
_source_excludes
(Optional, string) A list of fields to exclude from the returned _source field.
_source_includes
(Optional, string) A list of fields to extract and return from the _source field.
timeout
(Optional, time units) Specifies the period of time to wait for a response. If no response is received before the timeout expires, the request fails and returns an error. Defaults to 30s.
wait_for_active_shards

(Optional, string) The number of shard copies that must be active before proceeding with the operation. Set to all or any positive integer up to the total number of shards in the index (number_of_replicas+1). Default: 1, the primary shard.

See Active shards.

Examples

POST _bulk
{ "index" : { "_index" : "test", "_id" : "1" } }
{ "field1" : "value1" }
{ "delete" : { "_index" : "test", "_id" : "2" } }
{ "create" : { "_index" : "test", "_id" : "3" } }
{ "field1" : "value3" }
{ "update" : {"_id" : "1", "_index" : "test"} }
{ "doc" : {"field2" : "value2"} }

The API returns the following result:

{
   "took": 30,
   "errors": false,
   "items": [
      {
         "index": {
            "_index": "test",
            "_type": "_doc",
            "_id": "1",
            "_version": 1,
            "result": "created",
            "_shards": {
               "total": 2,
               "successful": 1,
               "failed": 0
            },
            "status": 201,
            "_seq_no" : 0,
            "_primary_term": 1
         }
      },
      {
         "delete": {
            "_index": "test",
            "_type": "_doc",
            "_id": "2",
            "_version": 1,
            "result": "not_found",
            "_shards": {
               "total": 2,
               "successful": 1,
               "failed": 0
            },
            "status": 404,
            "_seq_no" : 1,
            "_primary_term" : 2
         }
      },
      {
         "create": {
            "_index": "test",
            "_type": "_doc",
            "_id": "3",
            "_version": 1,
            "result": "created",
            "_shards": {
               "total": 2,
               "successful": 1,
               "failed": 0
            },
            "status": 201,
            "_seq_no" : 2,
            "_primary_term" : 3
         }
      },
      {
         "update": {
            "_index": "test",
            "_type": "_doc",
            "_id": "1",
            "_version": 2,
            "result": "updated",
            "_shards": {
                "total": 2,
                "successful": 1,
                "failed": 0
            },
            "status": 200,
            "_seq_no" : 3,
            "_primary_term" : 4
         }
      }
   ]
}
Bulk update example

When using the update action, retry_on_conflict can be used as a field in the action itself (not in the extra payload line), to specify how many times an update should be retried in the case of a version conflict.

The update action payload supports the following options: doc (partial document), upsert, doc_as_upsert, script, params (for script), lang (for script), and _source. See update documentation for details on the options. Example with update actions:

POST _bulk
{ "update" : {"_id" : "1", "_index" : "index1", "retry_on_conflict" : 3} }
{ "doc" : {"field" : "value"} }
{ "update" : { "_id" : "0", "_index" : "index1", "retry_on_conflict" : 3} }
{ "script" : { "source": "ctx._source.counter += params.param1", "lang" : "painless", "params" : {"param1" : 1}}, "upsert" : {"counter" : 1}}
{ "update" : {"_id" : "2", "_index" : "index1", "retry_on_conflict" : 3} }
{ "doc" : {"field" : "value"}, "doc_as_upsert" : true }
{ "update" : {"_id" : "3", "_index" : "index1", "_source" : true} }
{ "doc" : {"field" : "value"} }
{ "update" : {"_id" : "4", "_index" : "index1"} }
{ "doc" : {"field" : "value"}, "_source": true}