Elasticsearch Nodes

By Opster Team

Updated: Jun 14, 2023

| 1 min read

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Before you dig into the details of this guide, have you tried asking OpsGPT? You’ll receive concise answers that will help streamline your Elasticsearch/OpenSearch operations.

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

To review your configuration of nodes in Elasticsearch, we recommend you try the AutoOps platform. Aside from outlining your configuration, it will help you determine the ideal number of each type of node for your use case and help you avoid future issues involving your nodes. Try it for free.


To put it simply, a node is a single server that is part of a cluster. Each node is assigned one or more roles, which describe the node’s responsibility and operations. Data nodes store the data, and participate in the cluster’s indexing and search capabilities, while master nodes are responsible for managing the cluster’s activities and storing the cluster state, including the metadata.

While it is possible to run several node instances of Elasticsearch on the same hardware, it’s considered a best practice to limit a server to a single running instance of Elasticsearch.

Nodes connect to each other and form a cluster by using a discovery method. 


Master node

Master nodes are in charge of cluster-wide settings and changes – deleting or creating indices and fields, adding or removing nodes and allocating shards to nodes. Each cluster has a single master node that is elected from the master eligible nodes using a distributed consensus algorithm and is reelected if the current master node fails.

Coordinating (client) node

There is some confusion in the use of coordinating node terminology. Client nodes were removed from Elasticsearch after version 2.4 and became coordinating nodes.

Coordinating nodes are nodes that do not hold any configured role. They don’t hold data and are not part of the master eligible group nor execute ingest pipelines. Coordinating nodes serve incoming search requests and act as the query coordinator running query and fetch phases, sending requests to every node that holds a shard being queried. The coordinating node also distributes bulk indexing operations and route queries to shards based on the node’s responsiveness.

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Related log errors to this ES concept

After allocating node would have less than the required threshold of
After allocating node would have more than the allowed
Remote file corruption on node recovering local checksum OK
Seed node cluster name mismatch expected
Failing snapshot of shard on closed node
Failed to update snapshot state after node removal
Failed to serialize cluster state before publishing it to node
Failed to validate incoming join request from node
Cannot send ban for tasks with the parent to the node
Reload failed for plugin
Attempt to execute a master node operation without task
Node name node ID

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