How to Install and Configure Elasticsearch on Ubuntu

Elasticsearch is a distributed, open source search and analytics engine for all types of data, including textual, numerical, geospatial, structured, and unstructured. Elasticsearch is built on Apache Lucene and was first released in 2010 by Elasticsearch N.V. . Elasticsearch is the central component of the Elastic Stack, a set of open source tools for data ingestion, enrichment, storage, analysis, and visualization. Commonly referred to as the ELK Stack (after Elasticsearch, Logstash, and Kibana).

Elasticsearch is known for its simple REST APIs, distributed nature, speed, and scalability. You can use http methods like get , post, put, delete in combination with an url to manipulate your data.


Elasticsearch is developed in java and you need to have java installed on your Ubuntu. Use following command to check if java is installed and its version.

$ java --version
openjdk 11.0.5 2019-10-15
OpenJDK Runtime Environment (build 11.0.5+10-post-Ubuntu-0ubuntu1.118.04)
OpenJDK 64-Bit Server VM (build 11.0.5+10-post-Ubuntu-0ubuntu1.118.04, mixed mode, sharing)

Now check if  $JAVA_HOME variable is configured by checking its content by following command. If it returns blank, you need to set it up. Check post How to set Java environment path $JAVA_HOME in Ubuntu for setting up $JAVA_HOME

$ echo $JAVA_HOME

Setting up Elasticsearch

Packages is signed with the Elasticsearch Signing Key. Download and install the public signing key:

wget -qO - | sudo apt-key add -

You may need to install the apt-transport-https package on Ubuntu before proceeding

$sudo apt-get install apt-transport-https
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree 
Reading state information... Done
apt-transport-https is already the newest version (1.6.12).
0 upgraded, 0 newly installed, 0 to remove and 0 not upgraded./code>

Now Save the repository definition to /etc/apt/sources.list.d/elastic-7.x.list:

$ echo "deb stable main" | sudo tee -a /etc/apt/sources.list.d/elastic-7.x.list
deb stable main

You can install the Elasticsearch Debian package with:

sudo apt-get update 
sudo apt-get install elasticsearch

Configure Elasticsearch

Elasticsearch files are located in directory /etc/elasticsearch. There are two files

  1. elasticsearch.yml configures the Elasticsearch server settings.
  2. logging.yml it provides configuration for logging

Let us update elasticsearch.yml

sudo nano /etc/elasticsearch/elasticsearch.yml

There are multiple variables, however you need to update following variables

  • : specifies the name of the cluster
  • specifies the name of the server (node) . Please note the double inverted commas.

Please do not change You might see that in some posts people have changed or If you change, The cluster coordination algorithm has changed in 7.0 610 and in order to be safe it requires some specific configuration. This is relaxed when you bind to localhost only, but if/when you change elasticsearch enforces that your configure the cluster safely.

# ---------------------------------- Cluster -----------------------------------
# Use a descriptive name for your cluster:
# mycluster1
# ------------------------------------ Node ------------------------------------
# Use a descriptive name for the node:
# "node-1"
# Add custom attributes to the node:
#node.attr.rack: r1


# ---------------------------------- Network -----------------------------------
# Set the bind address to a specific IP (IPv4 or IPv6):
# Set a custom port for HTTP:
#http.port: 9200
# For more information, consult the network module documentation.

Launch Elasticsearch

You can start and stop Elasticsearch using following command

sudo systemctl start elasticsearch.service
sudo systemctl stop elasticsearch.service

Testing Elasticsearch

You can check connectivity using curl. Install curl if you dont have it on your machine and run following command

$ curl -X GET "http://localhost:9200/?pretty"
  "name" : "node-1",
  "cluster_name" : "mycluster1",
  "cluster_uuid" : "Q6GqVVJfRZO6KSHQ-pFbcQ",
  "version" : {
    "number" : "7.5.1",
    "build_flavor" : "default",
    "build_type" : "deb",
    "build_hash" : "3ae9ac9a93c95bd0cdc054951cf95d88e1e18d96",
    "build_date" : "2019-12-16T22:57:37.835892Z",
    "build_snapshot" : false,
    "lucene_version" : "8.3.0",
    "minimum_wire_compatibility_version" : "6.8.0",
    "minimum_index_compatibility_version" : "6.0.0-beta1"
  "tagline" : "You Know, for Search"

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