Running as ROOT user. this is a bad idea! – How to solve related issues

Opster Team

Feb-20, Version: 1.7-8.0

Before you begin reading this guide, we recommend you run Elasticsearch Error Check-Up which can resolve issues that cause many errors.

This guide will help you check for common problems that cause the log ” Running as ROOT user. this is a bad idea! ” to appear. To understand the issues related to this log, read the explanation below about the following Elasticsearch concepts: bootstrap.

Advanced users might want to skip right to the common problems section in each concept or try running the Check-Up to analyze Elasticsearch configuration and help resolve this error.

Log Context

Log “running as ROOT user. this is a bad idea!” classname is
We extracted the following from Elasticsearch source code for those seeking an in-depth context :

         final ESLogger logger = Loggers.getLogger(Bootstrap.class);

        // check if the user is running as root; and bail
        if (Natives.definitelyRunningAsRoot()) {
            if (Boolean.parseBoolean(System.getProperty("es.insecure.allow.root"))) {
                logger.warn("running as ROOT user. this is a bad idea!");
            } else {
                throw new RuntimeException("don't run elasticsearch as root.");


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