Search APIedit

Returns search hits that match the query defined in the request.

GET /my-index-000001/_search

Requestedit

GET /<target>/_search

GET /_search

POST /<target>/_search

POST /_search

Descriptionedit

Allows you to execute a search query and get back search hits that match the query. You can provide search queries using the q query string parameter or request body.

Path parametersedit

<target>

(Optional, string) Comma-separated list of data streams, indices, and index aliases to search. Wildcard (*) expressions are supported.

To search all data streams and indices in a cluster, omit this parameter or use _all or *.

Query parametersedit

Several options for this API can be specified using a query parameter or a request body parameter. If both parameters are specified, only the query parameter is used.

allow_no_indices

(Optional, boolean) If false, the request returns an error when a wildcard expression, index alias, or _all value targets only missing or closed indices.

Defaults to true.

allow_partial_search_results

(Optional, boolean) If true, returns partial results if there are request timeouts or shard failures. If false, returns an error with no partial results. Defaults to true.

To override the default for this field, set the search.default_allow_partial_results cluster setting to false.

batched_reduce_size
(Optional, integer) The number of shard results that should be reduced at once on the coordinating node. This value should be used as a protection mechanism to reduce the memory overhead per search request if the potential number of shards in the request can be large. Defaults to 512.
ccs_minimize_roundtrips
(Optional, boolean) If true, network round-trips between the coordinating node and the remote clusters are minimized when executing cross-cluster search (CCS) requests. See How cross-cluster search handles network delays. Defaults to true.
docvalue_fields
(Optional, string) A comma-separated list of fields to return as the docvalue representation of a field for each hit.
expand_wildcards

(Optional, string) Controls what kind of indices that wildcard expressions can expand to. Multiple values are accepted when separated by a comma, as in open,hidden. Valid values are:

all
Expand to open and closed indices, including hidden indices.
open
Expand only to open indices.
closed
Expand only to closed indices.
hidden
Expansion of wildcards will include hidden indices. Must be combined with open, closed, or both.
none
Wildcard expressions are not accepted.

Defaults to open.

explain
(Optional, boolean) If true, returns detailed information about score computation as part of a hit. Defaults to false.
from

(Optional, integer) Starting document offset. Defaults to 0.

By default, you cannot page through more than 10,000 documents using the from and size parameters. This limit is set using the index.max_result_window index setting.

Deep paging or requesting many results at once can result in slow searches. Results are sorted before being returned. Because search requests usually span multiple shards, each shard must generate its own sorted results. These separate results must then be combined and sorted to ensure that the overall order is correct.

As an alternative to deep paging, we recommend using scroll or the search_after parameter.

ignore_throttled
(Optional, boolean) If true, concrete, expanded or aliased indices will be ignored when frozen. Defaults to true.
ignore_unavailable
(Optional, boolean) If true, missing or closed indices are not included in the response. Defaults to false.
max_concurrent_shard_requests
(Optional, integer) Defines the number of concurrent shard requests per node this search executes concurrently. This value should be used to limit the impact of the search on the cluster in order to limit the number of concurrent shard requests. Defaults to 5.
pre_filter_shard_size

(Optional, integer) Defines a threshold that enforces a pre-filter roundtrip to prefilter search shards based on query rewriting if the number of shards the search request expands to exceeds the threshold. This filter roundtrip can limit the number of shards significantly if for instance a shard can not match any documents based on its rewrite method ie. if date filters are mandatory to match but the shard bounds and the query are disjoint. When unspecified, the pre-filter phase is executed if any of these conditions is met:

  • The request targets more than 128 shards.
  • The request targets one or more read-only index.
  • The primary sort of the query targets an indexed field.
preference

(Optional, string) Nodes and shards used for the search. By default, Elasticsearch selects from eligible nodes and shards using adaptive replica selection, accounting for allocation awareness.

Valid values for preference
_only_local
Run the search only on shards on the local node.
_local
If possible, run the search on shards on the local node. If not, select shards using the default method.
_only_nodes:<node-id>,<node-id>
Run the search on only the specified nodes IDs. If suitable shards exist on more than one selected nodes, use shards on those nodes using the default method. If none of the specified nodes are available, select shards from any available node using the default method.
_prefer_nodes:<node-id>,<node-id>
If possible, run the search on the specified nodes IDs. If not, select shards using the default method.
_shards:<shard>,<shard>
Run the search only on the specified shards. This value can be combined with other preference values, but this value must come first. For example: _shards:2,3|_local
<custom-string>
Any string that does not start with _. If the cluster state and selected shards do not change, searches using the same <custom-string> value are routed to the same shards in the same order.
q

(Optional, string) Query in the Lucene query string syntax.

You can use the q parameter to run a query parameter search. Query parameter searches do not support the full Elasticsearch Query DSL but are handy for testing.

The q parameter overrides the query parameter in the request body. If both parameters are specified, documents matching the query request body parameter are not returned.

request_cache
(Optional, boolean) If true, the caching of search results is enabled for requests where size is 0. See Shard request cache settings. Defaults to index level settings.
rest_total_hits_as_int
(Optional, boolean) Indicates whether hits.total should be rendered as an integer or an object in the rest search response. Defaults to false.
routing
(Optional, string) Target the specified primary shard.
scroll

(Optional, time value) Period to retain the search context for scrolling. See Scroll search results.

By default, this value cannot exceed 1d (24 hours). You can change this limit using the search.max_keep_alive cluster-level setting.

search_type

(Optional, string) How distributed term frequencies are calculated for relevance scoring.

Valid values for search_type
query_then_fetch
(Default) Distributed term frequencies are calculated locally for each shard running the search. We recommend this option for faster searches with potentially less accurate scoring.
dfs_query_then_fetch
Distributed term frequencies are calculated globally, using information gathered from all shards running the search. While this option increases the accuracy of scoring, it adds a round-trip to each shard, which can result in slower searches.
seq_no_primary_term
(Optional, boolean) If true, returns sequence number and primary term of the last modification of each hit. See Optimistic concurrency control.
size

(Optional, integer) Defines the number of hits to return. Defaults to 10.

By default, you cannot page through more than 10,000 documents using the from and size parameters. This limit is set using the index.max_result_window index setting.

Deep paging or requesting many results at once can result in slow searches. Results are sorted before being returned. Because search requests usually span multiple shards, each shard must generate its own sorted results. These separate results must then be combined and sorted to ensure that the overall order is correct.

As an alternative to deep paging, we recommend using scroll or the search_after parameter.

If the scroll parameter is specified, this value cannot be 0.

sort
(Optional, string) A comma-separated list of <field>:<direction> pairs.
_source

(Optional) Indicates which source fields are returned for matching documents. These fields are returned in the hits._source property of the search response. Defaults to true.

Valid values for _source
true
(boolean) The entire document source is returned.
false
(boolean) The document source is not returned.
<string>
(string) Comma-separated list of source fields to return. Wildcard (*) patterns are supported.
_source_excludes

(Optional, string) A comma-separated list of source fields to exclude from the response.

You can also use this parameter to exclude fields from the subset specified in _source_includes query parameter.

If the _source parameter is false, this parameter is ignored.

_source_includes

(Optional, string) A comma-separated list of source fields to include in the response.

If this parameter is specified, only these source fields are returned. You can exclude fields from this subset using the _source_excludes query parameter.

If the _source parameter is false, this parameter is ignored.

stats
(Optional, string) Specific tag of the request for logging and statistical purposes.
stored_fields

(Optional, string) A comma-separated list of stored fields to return as part of a hit. If no fields are specified, no stored fields are included in the response.

If this field is specified, the _source parameter defaults to false. You can pass _source: true to return both source fields and stored fields in the search response.

suggest_field
(Optional, string) Specifies which field to use for suggestions.
suggest_text
(Optional, string) The source text for which the suggestions should be returned.
terminate_after

(Optional, integer) The maximum number of documents to collect for each shard, upon reaching which the query execution will terminate early.

Defaults to 0, which does not terminate query execution early.

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 no timeout.
track_scores
(Optional, boolean) If true, calculate and return document scores, even if the scores are not used for sorting. Defaults to false.
track_total_hits

(Optional, integer or boolean) Number of hits matching the query to count accurately. Defaults to 10000.

If true, the exact number of hits is returned at the cost of some performance. If false, the response does not include the total number of hits matching the query.

typed_keys
(Optional, boolean) If true, aggregation and suggester names are be prefixed by their respective types in the response. Defaults to true.
version
(Optional, boolean) If true, returns document version as part of a hit. Defaults to false.

Request bodyedit

docvalue_fields

(Optional, array of strings and objects) Array of wildcard (*) patterns. The request returns doc values for field names matching these patterns in the hits.fields property of the response.

You can specify items in the array as a string or object. See Doc value fields.

Properties of docvalue_fields objects
field
(Required, string) Wildcard pattern. The request returns doc values for field names matching this pattern.
format

(Optional, string) Format in which the doc values are returned.

For date fields, you can specify a date date format. For numeric fields fields, you can specify a DecimalFormat pattern.

For other field data types, this parameter is not supported.

explain
(Optional, boolean) If true, returns detailed information about score computation as part of a hit. Defaults to false.
from

(Optional, integer) Starting document offset. Defaults to 0.

By default, you cannot page through more than 10,000 documents using the from and size parameters. This limit is set using the index.max_result_window index setting.

Deep paging or requesting many results at once can result in slow searches. Results are sorted before being returned. Because search requests usually span multiple shards, each shard must generate its own sorted results. These separate results must then be combined and sorted to ensure that the overall order is correct.

As an alternative to deep paging, we recommend using scroll or the search_after parameter.

indices_boost

(Optional, array of objects) Boosts the _score of documents from specified indices.

Properties of indices_boost objects
<index>: <boost-value>

(Required, float) <index> is the name of the index or index alias. Wildcard (*) expressions are supported.

<boost-value> is the factor by which scores are multiplied.

A boost value greater than 1.0 increases the score. A boost value between 0 and 1.0 decreases the score.

min_score
(Optional, float) Minimum _score for matching documents. Documents with a lower _score are not included in the search results.
query
(Optional, query object) Defines the search definition using the Query DSL.
seq_no_primary_term
(Optional, boolean) If true, returns sequence number and primary term of the last modification of each hit. See Optimistic concurrency control.
size

(Optional, integer) The number of hits to return. Defaults to 10.

By default, you cannot page through more than 10,000 documents using the from and size parameters. This limit is set using the index.max_result_window index setting.

Deep paging or requesting many results at once can result in slow searches. Results are sorted before being returned. Because search requests usually span multiple shards, each shard must generate its own sorted results. These separate results must then be combined and sorted to ensure that the overall order is correct.

As an alternative to deep paging, we recommend using scroll or the search_after parameter.

If the scroll parameter is specified, this value cannot be 0.

_source

(Optional) Indicates which source fields are returned for matching documents. These fields are returned in the hits._source property of the search response. Defaults to true.

Valid values for _source
true
(boolean) The entire document source is returned.
false
(boolean) The document source is not returned.
<wildcard_pattern>
(string or array of strings) Wildcard (*) pattern or array of patterns containing source fields to return.
<object>

(object) Object containing a list of source fields to include or exclude.

Properties for <object>
excludes

(string or array of strings) Wildcard (*) pattern or array of patterns containing source fields to exclude from the response.

You can also use this property to exclude fields from the subset specified in includes property.

includes

(string or array of strings) Wildcard (*) pattern or array of patterns containing source fields to return.

If this property is specified, only these source fields are returned. You can exclude fields from this subset using the excludes property.

stats
(Optional, array of strings) Stats groups to associate with the search. Each group maintains a statistics aggregation for its associated searches. You can retrieve these stats using the indices stats API.
terminate_after

(Optional, integer) The maximum number of documents to collect for each shard, upon reaching which the query execution will terminate early.

Defaults to 0, which does not terminate query execution early.

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 no timeout.
version
(Optional, boolean) If true, returns document version as part of a hit. Defaults to false.

Response bodyedit

_scroll_id

(string) Identifier for the search and its search context.

You can use this scroll ID with the scroll API to retrieve the next batch of search results for the request. See Scroll search results.

This parameter is only returned if the scroll query parameter is specified in the request.

took

(integer) Milliseconds it took Elasticsearch to execute the request.

This value is calculated by measuring the time elapsed between receipt of a request on the coordinating node and the time at which the coordinating node is ready to send the response.

Took time includes:

  • Communication time between the coordinating node and data nodes
  • Time the request spends in the search thread pool, queued for execution
  • Actual execution time

Took time does not include:

  • Time needed to send the request to Elasticsearch
  • Time needed to serialize the JSON response
  • Time needed to send the response to a client
timed_out
(boolean) If true, the request timed out before completion; returned results may be partial or empty.
_shards

(object) Contains a count of shards used for the request.

Properties of _shards
total
(integer) Total number of shards that require querying, including unallocated shards.
successful
(integer) Number of shards that executed the request successfully.
skipped
(integer) Number of shards that skipped the request because a lightweight check helped realize that no documents could possibly match on this shard. This typically happens when a search request includes a range filter and the shard only has values that fall outside of that range.
failed
(integer) Number of shards that failed to execute the request. Note that shards that are not allocated will be considered neither successful nor failed. Having failed+successful less than total is thus an indication that some of the shards were not allocated.
hits

(object) Contains returned documents and metadata.

Properties of hits
total

(object) Metadata about the number of returned documents.

Properties of total
value
(integer) Total number of returned documents.
relation

(string) Indicates whether the number of returned documents in the value parameter is accurate or a lower bound.

Values of relation:
eq
Accurate
gte
Lower bound, including returned documents
max_score

(float) Highest returned document _score.

This value is null for requests that do not sort by _score.

hits

(array of objects) Array of returned document objects.

Properties of hits objects
_index
(string) Name of the index containing the returned document.
_type
[6.0.0] Deprecated in 6.0.0. Mapping types are deprecated and will be removed in 8.0. See Removal of mapping types. (string) Mapping type of the returned document.
_id
(string) Unique identifier for the returned document. This ID is only unique within the returned index.
_score
(float) Positive 32-bit floating point number used to determine the relevance of the returned document.
_source

(object) Original JSON body passed for the document at index time.

You can use the _source parameter to exclude this property from the response or specify which source fields to return.

fields

(object) Contains field values for the documents. These fields must be specified in the request using one or more of the following request parameters:

This property is returned only if one or more of these parameters are set.

Properties of fields
<field>
(array) Key is the field name. Value is the value for the field.

Examplesedit

GET /my-index-000001/_search
{
  "query": {
    "term": {
      "user.id": "kimchy"
    }
  }
}

The API returns the following response:

{
  "took": 5,
  "timed_out": false,
  "_shards": {
    "total": 1,
    "successful": 1,
    "skipped": 0,
    "failed": 0
  },
  "hits": {
    "total": {
      "value": 1,
      "relation": "eq"
    },
    "max_score": 1.3862942,
    "hits": [
      {
        "_index": "my-index-000001",
        "_type" : "_doc",
        "_id": "0",
        "_score": 1.3862942,
        "_source": {
          "@timestamp": "2099-11-15T14:12:12",
          "http": {
            "request": {
              "method": "get"
            },
            "response": {
              "status_code": 200,
              "bytes": 1070000
            },
            "version": "1.1"
          },
          "source": {
            "ip": "127.0.0.1"
          },
          "message": "GET /search HTTP/1.1 200 1070000",
          "user": {
            "id": "kimchy"
          }
        }
      }
    ]
  }
}