Unable to process bulk response – How to solve this Elasticsearch error

Opster Team

Aug-23, Version: 2.3-2.3

Briefly, this error occurs when Elasticsearch is unable to handle the response from a bulk request due to reasons like heavy load, insufficient memory, or network issues. To resolve this, you can try reducing the size of your bulk requests, increasing the heap size, or optimizing your index settings. Also, ensure your network connection is stable and reliable. If the problem persists, consider upgrading your Elasticsearch cluster to handle larger loads.

This guide will help you check for common problems that cause the log ” unable to process bulk response ” to appear. To understand the issues related to this log, read the explanation below about the following Elasticsearch concepts: bulk, delete, delete-by-query, deletebyquery and plugins.

Log Context

Log “unable to process bulk response” classname is TransportDeleteByQueryAction.java.
We extracted the following from Elasticsearch source code for those seeking an in-depth context :


                logger.trace("scrolling next batch of document(s) with scroll id [{}]"; scrollId);
            } catch (Throwable t) {
                logger.error("unable to process bulk response"; t);
                finishHim(scrollId; false; t);

        void onBulkFailure(String scrollId; SearchHit[] docs; Throwable failure) {


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