Failed to create SearchContextHighlighter – How to solve this Elasticsearch exception

Opster Team

August-23, Version: 6.8-8.9

Before you dig into reading this guide, have you tried asking OpsGPT what this log means? You’ll receive a customized analysis of your log.

Try OpsGPT now for step-by-step guidance and tailored insights into your Elasticsearch operation.

Briefly, this error occurs when Elasticsearch fails to create a context for highlighting search results. This could be due to incorrect highlight field configuration, insufficient memory, or internal bugs. To resolve this, ensure that the fields specified in the highlight query exist and are not analyzed. Also, check if there’s enough memory allocated to Elasticsearch. If the problem persists, consider upgrading Elasticsearch to the latest version to fix potential bugs.

For a complete solution to your to your search operation, try for free AutoOps for Elasticsearch & OpenSearch . With AutoOps and Opster’s proactive support, you don’t have to worry about your search operation – we take charge of it. Get improved performance & stability with less hardware.

This guide will help you check for common problems that cause the log ” failed to create SearchContextHighlighter ” to appear. To understand the issues related to this log, read the explanation below about the following Elasticsearch concepts: search.

Log Context

Log “failed to create SearchContextHighlighter” class name is We extracted the following from Elasticsearch source code for those seeking an in-depth context :

 if (source.highlighter() != null) {
 HighlightBuilder highlightBuilder = source.highlighter();
 try {
 } catch (IOException e) {
 throw new SearchException(shardTarget; "failed to create SearchContextHighlighter"; e);
 if (source.scriptFields() != null && source.size() != 0) {
 int maxAllowedScriptFields = searchExecutionContext.getIndexSettings().getMaxScriptFields();
 if (source.scriptFields().size() > maxAllowedScriptFields) {


How helpful was this guide?

We are sorry that this post was not useful for you!

Let us improve this post!

Tell us how we can improve this post?

Get expert answers on Elasticsearch/OpenSearch