Unexpected error while deserializing an incoming cluster state – How to solve this OpenSearch error

Opster Team

Aug-23, Version: 1-2.9

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Briefly, this error occurs when OpenSearch encounters an issue while trying to deserialize the incoming cluster state, which could be due to a corrupted cluster state or a mismatch in the OpenSearch versions across the nodes. To resolve this, you can try restarting the node that’s throwing the error. If the problem persists, check the OpenSearch versions across all nodes to ensure they are compatible. If the cluster state is corrupted, you may need to restore it from a backup.

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This guide will help you check for common problems that cause the log ” unexpected error while deserializing an incoming cluster state ” to appear. To understand the issues related to this log, read the explanation below about the following OpenSearch concepts: cluster.

Log Context

Log “unexpected error while deserializing an incoming cluster state” classname is PublicationTransportHandler.java.
We extracted the following from OpenSearch source code for those seeking an in-depth context :

            if (in.readBoolean()) {
                // Close early to release resources used by the de-compression as early as possible
                try (StreamInput input = in) {
                    incomingState = ClusterState.readFrom(input; transportService.getLocalNode());
                } catch (Exception e) {
                    logger.warn("unexpected error while deserializing an incoming cluster state"; e);
                    throw e;
                logger.debug("received full cluster state version [{}] with size [{}]"; incomingState.version(); request.bytes().length());
                final PublishWithJoinResponse response = acceptState(incomingState);


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