Explanation of lucene-1.0: Too many open files error

If one encounters a ‘Too many open files’ error in their $NEO4J_HOME/logs/debug.log similar to

Caused by: java.nio.file.FileSystemException: /data/neo4j/db/schema/index/lucene_native-2.0/1612/lucene-1.0: Too many open files
    at sun.nio.fs.UnixException.translateToIOException(UnixException.java:91)
    at sun.nio.fs.UnixException.rethrowAsIOException(UnixException.java:102)
    at sun.nio.fs.UnixException.rethrowAsIOException(UnixException.java:107)
    at sun.nio.fs.UnixFileSystemProvider.newDirectoryStream(UnixFileSystemProvider.java:427)
    at java.nio.file.Files.newDirectoryStream(Files.java:457)

this can be addressed by setting in your $NEO4J_HOME/conf/neo4j.conf and parameter


Without this parameter for each index we will maintain many open file handles into a single file whereby each is responsible for a portion of the file. Whereas with the parameter set as above then we will have one open file handle per file thus reducing the number of open file handles.

It should be noted that in Neo4j 4.0 this parameter will automatically default to 0. ”’

  • Last Modified: 2020-09-15 13:07:09 UTC by Dana Canzano.
  • Relevant for Neo4j Versions: 3.5.
  • Relevant keywords index, open-files.