Operation only allowed when shard state is one of – How to solve this Elasticsearch exception

Opster Team

August-23, Version: 6.8-7.15

Briefly, this error occurs when an operation is attempted on a shard that is not in the correct state. Elasticsearch operations can only be performed on shards that are in specific states, such as STARTED or RELOCATING. If a shard is in an inappropriate state like INITIALIZING or CLOSED, operations cannot be performed. To resolve this issue, you can either wait for the shard to transition to an appropriate state or manually change the shard state. However, manual intervention should be done cautiously as it can lead to data loss or corruption.

This guide will help you check for common problems that cause the log ” operation only allowed when shard state is one of ” to appear. To understand the issues related to this log, read the explanation below about the following Elasticsearch concepts: shard, index.

Log Context

Log “operation only allowed when shard state is one of” class name is IndexShard.java. We extracted the following from Elasticsearch source code for those seeking an in-depth context :

 assert origin == Engine.Operation.Origin.LOCAL_RESET;
 assert getActiveOperationsCount() == OPERATIONS_BLOCKED
 : "locally resetting without blocking operations; active operations are [" + getActiveOperations() + "]";
 if (writeAllowedStates.contains(state) == false) {
 throw new IllegalIndexShardStateException(shardId; state; "operation only allowed when shard state is one of " +
 writeAllowedStates + "; origin [" + origin + "]");


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