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The Solr start Command Syntax and Examples

This command is important because it invokes Solr with settings for modes, ports, directories, sample data sets and memory allocation.
  1. About - understand the purpose of the start command.
  2. Syntax - see solr start command usage from the command line.
  3. Options - view 12 options used with the solr start command.
  4. Examples - review several common examples including additional help.
face pic by Paul Alan Davis, CFA
Updated: February 24, 2021
Here we focus on the command line using a Linux-based operating system, however many of the same commands work for macOS. There are slight differences for Windows.

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The Solr start Command


Whether you are evaluating Apache Solr versus Elasticsearch for your website search or enterprise search needs, you will need to start Apache Solr search from command line to begin. The solr start command offers a fast way to start the solr service using a variety of settings.

Apache Solr Reference

1. About the solr start command

The solr start command will start Solr with settings such as foreground or background, cloud or standalone mode, ports, configuration file directories, examples data sets and memory allocations. So it is one of the most important and frequently used commands.

The solr start command is one of 12 commands within the main solr script.

The solr start command itself has 12 options, also known as parameters.

2. Syntax for the solr start command

The syntax for running solr start is as follows.

$ bin/solr start [-f] [-c] [-h hostname] [-p port] [-d directory] [-z zkHost] [-e example] [-s solr.solr.home] [-t solr.data.home] [-a "additional-options"] [-V]

The list of 12 options including default values are noted in the table below.

This syntax assumes your current working directory is the $SOLR_HOME directory for Solr, which for version 7 would be ~/solr-7.0.0/ in standalone mode for a local installation. When running in a production environment the directory locations may differ.

So the path to the location of the solr script is: ~/solr-7.0.0/bin/solr. Alternatively, the solr script can be run using the convention ./solr from within the bin directory.

When using Windows, the solr script is called using solr.cmd.

3. Options for the solr start command

For the solr start command all 12 options (parameters) are optional.

Syntax Purpose Default
bin/solr start without options Start Solr with default options.
  • background mode
  • -h localhost
  • -p 8983
  • -d server
  • -s solr
  • -m 512m
-f Start Solr in the foreground. This cannot be paired with the -e option to open an example data set. Start Solr in background mode
-c or -cloud Start Solr in SolrCloud mode. It is common to also include the -z option. If -z is not supplied then a Zookeeper instance is started on the default port (8983) plus 1000, or 9983.
-h <host> Indicate a hostname for the Solr instance so HTTP requests can be sent through a browser to
http://<host>:<port> to access the Solr Admin User Interface.
-p <port> Set the port where Solr will listen for HTTP requests. Port 8983
-d <dir> Specify the location of the server directory where core configurations and indexes are stored. It is more common to adjust the -s option one step lower in the $SOLR_HOME/server/solr directory in some use cases. $SOLR_HOME/server
-z <zkHost> Connect to an existing Zookeeper instance when initiating with the -c or -cloud option in SolrCloud mode. Create a new embeded Zookeeper instance
-m <memory> Sets the minimum and maximum amount of memory allocated to the the Java Virtual Machine. Using one value sets both minimum (-Xms) and maximum (-Xmx) at the same level. Sizes are given in m for megabytes and g for gigabytes. 512m, or 512 megabytes
-s <dir> Initiates a system property called solr.solr.home which is where solr core directories are installed. Solr will look for a solr.xml file in that directory, unless one is located in Zookeeper. This is ignored when using -e to start an example data set. $SOLR_HOME/server/solr
-e <example> Select the name of an example data set to start. Currently there are four data sets.
  • cloud - for SolrCloud
  • techproducts - for an online technology products store
  • dih - for data import handlers
  • schemaless - Solr interprets a schema from the data
-a To pass additional parameters to the Java Virtual Machine on startup for more advanced setups. These are typically included within double quotes. None
-j To pass additional parameters to Jetty on startup for more advanced setups. These are typically included within double quotes. None
-noprompt Do not prompt for user input and accept defaults where interaction would otherwise be required. Prompt the user
-v Set verbose mode (DEBUG) for logging, common in a development environment. Log level set to INFO
-q Set quiet mode (WARN) for logging, common in a production environment where only warnings and errors are logged. Log level set to INFO
-V Provide verbose messaging about actions taken from the bin/solr script. Run silent
-force To silence a warning message when Solr is started by the root user. Using root may cause issues. To exit with a warning

4. Examples of the solr start command

Example 1 - Start Solr with the techproducts example data set

The following command runs Solr with the example data set called techproducts including its default configuration files.

$ bin/solr start -e techproducts
Example 2 - Start Solr on a specified port number

The following command will start Solr on port number 8984 instead of on the default 8983.

$ bin/solr start -p 8984
Example 3 - Start Solr while setting the hostname

The following command will start Solr with the hostname set to search.example.com.

$ bin/solr start -h search.example.com
Example 4 - Start Solr with allocated memory of 2 Gigabytes

The following command will start Solr with 2 Gigabytes of memory.

$ bin/solr start -m 2g
Example 5 - Start Solr with verbose messages

The following command will start Solr with messages from the bin/solr script itself.

$ bin/solr start -V
Example 6 - Print additional help on the solr start command

From the command line you can access additional help on the start command by appending -help after the command.

$ bin/solr start -help

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