Interpreting indexing.index_total stat


I'm trying to interpret the indexing.index_total stat documented here:

Does this metric return a cumulative count of number of indexing operations since node start-up? Or does it provide the number of operations for some interval?

From the values I've seen, I think it is the former. However, in a few cases I see this behavior where the value of this stat decreases (confirmed that the cumulative counter is not being reset due to overflow or node restart). Are there other scenarios when this value would decrease? TIA

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