ElasticSearch cluster backup


For an Elasticsearch cluster, is it a supported way to backup the cluster by completely shutting it down and take data volumes snapshots?

This may have worked in very old versions of Elasticsearch, but has as far as I know never been supported. The only supported backup method for Elasticsearch is to use the snapshot/restore APIs.

I'm familiar with the documentation on backups, however, this particular paragraph caught my attention:

A copy of the data directories of a cluster’s nodes does not work as a backup because it is not a consistent representation of their contents at a single point in time. You cannot fix this by shutting down nodes while making the copies, nor by taking atomic filesystem-level snapshots, because Elasticsearch has consistency requirements that span the whole cluster. You must use the built-in snapshot functionality for cluster backups.

If I power down the whole cluster, wouldn't that ensure consistency across the cluster?

The way I understand this is, as long as full cluster restart is a supported capability, then creating volume snapshots while all the nodes are offline should naturally follow.

Is there something I've failed to consider?

No, I think you are right. Powering down the full cluster before taking snapshot may work.

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