Runtime must be a map type – How to solve this Elasticsearch exception

Opster Team

August-23, Version: 7.11-8.9

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Briefly, this error occurs when Elasticsearch encounters a non-map type value while expecting a map type. This usually happens when you’re trying to define a runtime field in an index template or a mapping, and the provided value is not a map. To resolve this issue, ensure that the runtime field definition is a map type. This means it should be a collection of key-value pairs enclosed in curly braces. Also, check the syntax and structure of your Elasticsearch query or mapping to ensure it’s correct.

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This guide will help you check for common problems that cause the log ” runtime must be a map type ” to appear. To understand the issues related to this log, read the explanation below about the following Elasticsearch concepts: index.

Log Context

Log “runtime must be a map type” class name is We extracted the following from Elasticsearch source code for those seeking an in-depth context :

 if (fieldNode instanceof Map) {
 Map fields = RuntimeField.parseRuntimeFields((Map) fieldNode; parserContext; true);
 return true;
 } else {
 throw new ElasticsearchParseException("runtime must be a map type");
 return false;


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