[elasticsearch] Removing Data From ElasticSearch

I'm new to ElasticSearch. I'm trying to figure out how to remove data from ElasticSearch. I have deleted my indexes. However, that doesn't seem to actually remove the data itself. The other stuff I've seen points to the Delete by Query feature. However, I'm not even sure what to query on. I know my indexes. Essentially, I'd like to figure out how to do a


From PostMan in Chrome. However, I'm not having any luck. It seems like no matter what I do, the data hangs around. Thus far, I've successfully deleted the indexes by using the DELETE HTTP Verb in PostMan and using a url like:


However, that doesn't seem to actually remove the data (aka docs) themselves.

This question is related to elasticsearch

The answer is

You can delete the index by Kibana Console:

Console Icon

To get all index:

GET /_cat/indices?v

To delete a specific index:


You can also use chrome extension elasticsearch-head to delete index

simplest way !

Endpoint :

Payload :
  "query": { 
    "match": {
      "message": "some message"

where twitter is the index in elastic search

ref ; https://www.elastic.co/guide/en/elasticsearch/reference/current/docs-delete-by-query.html

If you ever need to delete all the indexes, this may come in handy:

curl -X DELETE 'http://localhost:9200/_all'


Invoke-WebRequest -method DELETE http://localhost:9200/_all

curl -X DELETE 'https://localhost:9200/_all'

Change http to https if you are using SSL certificate in you application

I wanted to delete logstash index and searched a lot regarding different tools like curl. But found the solution at the end. Login into Kibana. Go to Dev Tools tab and type DELETE /logstash-* in query field and hit green arrow button. if you get "acknowledged": true in response that means the data has been cleared.

You can also delete the index using DELETE action in 'elasticsearch head' (Chrome plugin ). Add it to your chrome and connect it to your host. There you will find all your indices and if you click on actions button below the index you want to delete, you will find a DELETE option in the drop down. click on it and enter DELETE in the pop-up. Your index will be deleted. 'Elasticsearch head' extension is an easy way to view and manage your indices and data.

Say I need to delete an index filebeat-7.6.2-2020.04.30-000001 and I performed it using a curl DELETE option (curl -X DELETE "localhost:9200/filebeat-7.6.2-2020.04.30-000001?pretty") and results in an authentication problem as below;

  "error" : {
    "type" : "security_exception",
    "reason" : "missing authentication credentials for REST request [/filebeat-7.6.2-2020.04.30-000001?pretty]"
  "status" : 401

Here you should authenticate the curl request using the username and password you have provided for Elasticsearch. Try then

curl -X DELETE -u myelasticuser:myelasticpassword "localhost:9200/filebeat-7.6.2-2020.04.30-000001?pretty"

will results in { "acknowledged" : true }.

#list all index:       curl -XGET http://localhost:9200/_cat/indices?v 

enter image description here

#delete index:         curl -XDELETE 'localhost:9200/index_name'
#delete all indices:   curl -XDELETE 'localhost:9200/_all'
#delete document   :   curl -XDELETE 'localhost:9200/index_name/type_name/document_id'

Install kibana. Kibana has a smarter dev tool which helps to build query easily.

enter image description here

You can delete one or more indices, which really deletes their files from disk. For example:

curl -XDELETE localhost:9200/$INDEXNAME

Where $INDEXNAME can be an index name (e.g. users_v2), N indices separated by comma (e.g. users_v2,users_v3). An index pattern (e.g. users_*) or _all, also works, unless it's blocked in the config via action.destructive_requires_name: true.

Deleting individual documents is possible, but this won't immediately purge them. A delete is only a soft delete, and documents are really removed during segment merges. You'll find lots of details about segments and merges in this presentation. It's about Solr, but merges are from Lucene, so you have the same options in Elasticsearch.

Back to the API, you can either delete individual documents by ID (provide a routing value if you index with routing):

curl -XDELETE localhost:9200/users_v2/_doc/user1

Or by query:

curl -XPOST -H 'Content-Type: application/json' localhost:9200/users_v2/_delete_by_query -d '{
  "query": {
    "match": {
      "description_field": "bad user"

For mass-delete by query you may use special delete by query API:

$ curl -XDELETE 'http://localhost:9200/twitter/tweet/_query' -d '{
    "query" : {
        "term" : { "user" : "kimchy" }

In history that API was deleted and then reintroduced again

Who interesting it has long history.

  1. In first version of that answer I refer to documentation of elasticsearch version 1.6. In it that functionality was marked as deprecated but works good.
  2. In elasticsearch version 2.0 it was moved to separate plugin. And even reasons why it became plugin explained.
  3. And it again appeared in core API in version 5.0!

To list down the indices curl -L localhost:9200/_cat/indices

9200 default port[change the port if using some other port]

You will likely find all indices starting with logstash-yyyy-mm-dd format(logstash-*)

You can see all the indices and use

To delete the indices and data trigger following command.

curl -XDELETE localhost:9200/index_name (Which will remove the data and indices both).

You can delete either whole index,doc-type or a perticular id data. these are the three ways:

  1. curl -XDELETE localhost:9200/index_name

  2. curl -XDELETE localhost:9200/index_name/doc-type

  3. curl -XDELETE localhost:9200/index_name/doc-type/documentId

and if you wish to delete all the index then go for wildcard.

You can delete an index in python as follows

from elasticsearch import Elasticsearch

es = Elasticsearch([{'host':'localhost', 'port':'9200'}])

    "Name":"Programming Fundamentals",


You have to send a DELETE request to


You can also delete a single document:


I suggest you to use elastichammer.

After deleting you can look up if the index still exists with the following URL: http://[your_host]:9200/_stats/

Good luck!

The documentation (or The Definitive Guide) says, that you can also use the next query to delete all indices:

curl -XDELETE 'http://localhost:9200/*'

And there's an important note:

For some, the ability to delete all your data with a single command is a very scary prospect. If you want to eliminate the possibility of an accidental mass-deletion, you can set the following to true in your elasticsearch.yml:

action.destructive_requires_name: true

Deleting the index will delete the mapping and type along. you can delete all rows by the following query

curl -XDELETE 'localhost:9200/twitter/tweet/_query?pretty' -d'
   "query": { 

However for above query you need to install delete-by-query plugin as of Elasticsearch's 2.0.0-beta1 delete-by-query was removed from main api

Install delete-by-query plugin

sudo bin/plugin install delete-by-query

For more


There are lots of good answers here, but there is also something i'd like to add:

  • If you are running on AWS ElasticSearch service, you canĀ“t drop/delete indexes. Instead of delete indexes, you must reindex them.