Join failed during pre-flight circuit breaker check – How to solve this Elasticsearch error

Opster Team

Aug-23, Version: 8.5-8.9

Briefly, this error occurs when Elasticsearch’s circuit breaker mechanism, which prevents nodes from running out of memory, is triggered during a join operation. This could be due to insufficient heap memory or a large query. To resolve this, you can increase the heap size, optimize your queries to consume less memory, or adjust the circuit breaker settings to allow more memory usage. However, be cautious with the last option as it might lead to OutOfMemoryError if not handled properly.

This guide will help you check for common problems that cause the log ” join failed during pre-flight circuit breaker check ” to appear. To understand the issues related to this log, read the explanation below about the following Elasticsearch concepts: circuit, breaker, join, cluster.

Log Context

Log “join failed during pre-flight circuit breaker check” classname is
We extracted the following from Elasticsearch source code for those seeking an in-depth context :

                    final var attempt = new FailedJoinAttempt(destination; joinRequest; elasticsearchException);
                    assert elasticsearchException instanceof CircuitBreakingException : e; // others shouldn't happen; handle them anyway
                } else {
                    logger.error("join failed during pre-flight circuit breaker check"; e);
                    assert false : e; // shouldn't happen; handle it anyway


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