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cerebro is an open source(MIT License) elasticsearch web admin tool.


cerebro needs Java 1.8 or newer to run.



Some settings in cerebro can be set by specifying them as Java System properties, while others need to be specified on the configuration file(conf/application.conf).

For an extensive list of Java System properties accepted, check

HTTP server address and port

You can run cerebro listening on a different port(9000) and host(

bin/cerebro -Dhttp.port=1234 -Dhttp.address=


By default, the RUNNING_PID is placed on the root directory of cerebro, but it is recommendable to place it somewhere that is cleared on restart(/var/run). Make sure the location exists and that cerebro has write permissions to it.

bin/cerebro -Dpidfile.path=/var/run/

It is also possible to avoid the creation of the RUNNING_PID file by setting the path to /dev/null on the configuration file:

pidfile.path = "/dev/null"

Using an alternate configuration file

It is possible to define an alternate configuration file(other than conf/application.conf). This can be achieved in two different ways:


This will pick the specified file from the classpath.

bin/cerebro -Dconfig.resource=alternate.conf 


This will pick the specified file from a directory other than the apps dir.

bin/cerebro -Dconfig.fiel=/some/other/dir/alternate.conf 

List of known hosts

A list of predefined hosts can be defined for quicker access by editing conf/application.conf file. If host is password protected, authentication should be also set.


hosts: [
        host: http://localhost:9200
        host = "http://some-authenticated-host:9200",
        auth = {
            username = "username"
            password = "secret-password"

User authentication

It is possible to control access to cerebro through authentication.

At the moment, there are no roles/permission level, and either an user is able to access or not.

There are two methods of authentication:

  • Basic: username and password on the configuration file
  • LDAP: connect to an external provider for authentication

Example for basic:

auth {
  type: basic
  settings: {
    username = "admin"
    password = "1234"

Example for LDAP:

auth {
  type: ldap
  settings: {
    url = "ldap://host:port"
    base-dn = "ou=active,ou=Employee"
    method  = "simple"
    user-domain = ""