Exception retrieving free physical memory – How to solve this Elasticsearch error

Opster Team

Aug-23, Version: 6.8-8.9

Briefly, this error occurs when Elasticsearch is unable to retrieve the amount of free physical memory available on the system. This could be due to insufficient permissions, a misconfigured system, or an issue with the JVM. To resolve this issue, you can try the following: 1) Ensure Elasticsearch has the necessary permissions to access system resources. 2) Check your system configuration and make sure it’s correctly set up. 3) Update or modify your JVM settings to allow Elasticsearch to access the required memory information.

This guide will help you check for common problems that cause the log ” exception retrieving free physical memory ” to appear. To understand the issues related to this log, read the explanation below about the following Elasticsearch concepts: monitor, memory.

Log Context

Log “exception retrieving free physical memory” classname is OsProbe.java.
We extracted the following from Elasticsearch source code for those seeking an in-depth context :

                logger.debug("OS reported a negative free memory value [{}]"; freeMem);
                return 0;
            return freeMem;
        } catch (Exception e) {
            logger.warn("exception retrieving free physical memory"; e);
            return 0;