Bundled Elasticsearch throws node validation exception after Bitbucket upgrade

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Platform notice: Server and Data Center only. This article only applies to Atlassian products on the Server and Data Center platforms.

Support for Server* products ended on February 15th 2024. If you are running a Server product, you can visit the Atlassian Server end of support announcement to review your migration options.

*Except Fisheye and Crucible


After upgrading Bitbucket, the bundled Elasticsearch instance fails to start. In addition, the following error is found in the <BitbucketHome>/log/search/bitbucket_search.log file:

[2020-02-24T06:15:46,142][ERROR][o.e.b.Bootstrap          ] [bitbucket_bundled]node validation exception
Cluster name [bitbucket_search] subdirectory exists in data paths [<BITBUCKET_HOME>/shared/search/data/bitbucket_search]. All data under these paths must be moved up one directory to paths [<BITBUCKET_HOME>/shared/search/data]


This bitbucket_search directory may exist because an older Bitbucket version (Bitbucket 5.4.x or less) used the following path to store the Elasticsearch indexes:

  • $BITBUCKET_HOME/shared/search/data/bitbucket_search/nodes

From Bitbucket 5.15.x onward, it stores the Elasticsearch indexes in the following path:

  • $BITBUCKET_HOME/shared/search/data/nodes

In the following ticket, we upgraded the version of the bundled Elasticsearch instance to 6.8.6 - which contains a change from Elasticsearch which prevents the node from starting up if there's a cluster name in the provided data path:

BSERV-12187 - Getting issue details... STATUS


The following bug ticket tracks our progress towards automatically applying the below steps in later versions of Bitbucket:

BSERV-12206 - Getting issue details... STATUS

To resolve this problem, the older $BITBUCKET_HOME/shared/search/data/bitbucket_search directory needs to be fully removed.

Once this directory has been removed, run the appropriate Bitbucket start-up script for your environment in order to attempt to start the bundled Elasticsearch instance.

 This should not have any impact on the integrity of the indexes stored in $BITBUCKET_HOME/shared/search/data/nodes, which is the current location where the bundled Elasticsearch instance stores its indexes.

Last modified on Mar 2, 2020

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