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Metastore configuration

Quickwit needs a place to store meta-information about its indexes.

For instance:

  • The index configuration.
  • Meta-information about its splits. For instance, their IDs, the number of documents they contain, their sizes, their min/max timestamp, and the set of tags present in the split.
  • The different sources checkpoints.
  • Some extra information such as the index creation time.

The metastore is entirely defined by a single URI. One can set it by editing the metastore_uri parameter of the node configuration file (often named quickwit.yaml).

Currently, Quickwit offers two implementations:

  • PostgreSQL: recommended for distributed usage.
  • File-backed implementation.

PostgreSQL Metastore

We recommend the PostgreSQL metastore for any distributed usage.

The PostgreSQL metastore can be configured by setting a PostgreSQL URI in the metastore_uri parameter of the Quickwit configuration file. The URI takes the following format:


Some of those parameters can be omitted. The following PostgreSQL URIs are for instance valid:


The database has to be created in advance.

On its first execution, Quickwit will transparently create the necessary tables.

Likewise, if you upgrade Quickwit to a version that includes some changes in the PostgreSQL schema, Quickwit will transparently operate the migration startup.

File-backed metastore

For convenience, Quickwit also makes it possible to store its metadata in files using a file-backed metastore. In that case, Quickwit will write one file per index.

The metastore is then configured by passing a Storage URI that will serve as the root of the metastore storage.

The metadata file associated with a given index will then be stored under


For the moment, Quickwit supports two types of storage types:

  • a local file system URI (e.g., file:///opt/toto). It is also valid to pass a file path directly (without file://). /var/quickwit. Relative paths will be resolved with respect to the current working directory.
  • S3-compatible storage URI (e.g. s3://my-bucket/some-path] ). See the Storage URI documentation to configure S3 or S3-compatible storage.

Polling configuration

By default, the File-Backed Metastore is only read once when you start a Quickwit process (searcher, indexer,...).

You can also configure it to poll the File-Backed Metastore periodically to keep a fresh view of it. This is useful for a Searcher instance that needs to be aware of new splits published by an Indexer running in parallel.

To configure the polling interval (in seconds only), add a URI fragment to the storage URI like this: s3://quickwit/my-indexes#polling_interval=30s


Amazon S3 charges $0.0004 per 1000 GET requests. Polling a metastore every 30 seconds will induce a cost of $0.04 per month and per index.


The following file-backed metastore URIs for instance are valid:


The file-backed metastore does not allow concurrent writes. For this reason, it should not be used in distributed settings. Running several indexer services on the same file-backed metastore can lead to the corruption of the metastore. Running several search services, on the other hand, is perfectly safe.