Missing start of array in include/exclude clause – Elasticsearch Error How To Solve Related Issues

Missing start of array in include/exclude clause – Elasticsearch Error How To Solve Related Issues

Updated: July-20

Elasticsearch Version: 1.7-8.0

Before you begin reading this guide, we recommend you try running the Elasticsearch Error Check-Up  which can resolve issues causing many errors 


This guide will help you check for common problems that cause the log “Missing start of array in include/exclude clause” to appear. It’s important to understand the issues related to the log, so to get started, read the general overview on common issues and tips related to the Elasticsearch concepts: search, aggregations.

Advanced users might want to skip right to the common problems section in each concept or try running the Check-Up which analyses ES to discover the cause of many errors and provides suitable actionable recommendations (free tool that requires no installation). 

Log Context

Log”Missing start of array in include/exclude clause”classname  is IncludeExclude.java
We extracted the following from Elasticsearch source code for those seeking an in-depth context :

  private static Set parseArrayToSet(XContentParser parser) throws IOException {
  final Set set = new HashSet();
  if (parser.currentToken() != XContentParser.Token.START_ARRAY) {
  throw new ElasticsearchParseException("Missing start of array in include/exclude clause");
  while (parser.nextToken() != XContentParser.Token.END_ARRAY) {
  if (!parser.currentToken().isValue()) {
  throw new ElasticsearchParseException("Array elements in include/exclude clauses should be string values");


Related issues to this log

We have gathered selected Q&A from the community and issues from Github, that can help fix related issues please review the following for further information :

1 elasticsearch bool query combine must with OR -views 133,671 ,score 181

How to query SOLR for empty fields? -views   106,029,score 111



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