Search indexes required in a scalable environment

Last updated Monday, November 13, 2017 in Sitecore Experience Platform for Administrator

Sitecore comes with a default set of search indexes that along with your search and indexing provider help to improve the performance of your website search.

When you configure Sitecore servers in a scalable environment, you first decide whether you want to use Lucene or Solr as your search and indexing provider, then you configure the indexes you need on each server.

As a general rule, on the server you are configuring, you only need the indexes that correspond with the databases that you use. For example, if you are configuring a content delivery server, you need the Web database and the sitecore_web_index.

Sharing indexes

If you use Lucene as your search and indexing provider, you must use the appropriate index update strategy to re-index local data because Lucene cannot easily be synchronized across servers. Lucene does not support sharing indexes, so to keep your indexes synchronized you may need to use additional strategies.

If you use Solr, keeping indexes synchronized across servers is easier and requires fewer indexing strategies.


If you have two content management servers that both need to access the same sitecore_master_index index, then depending on whether you use Lucene or Solr there are two different approaches you can follow:

  • If you use Lucene, the sharing of indexes is not supported. Each content management server must maintain its own Lucene index.
  • If you use Solr, the index storage is centralized and can be shared across multiple servers. For example, one content management server could maintain a search index and share it or you could have a dedicated server responsible for maintaining all your search indexes.

Indexes required on servers in a scalable environment

Sitecore search indexes required for different types of servers in a scaled environment:

Server type

Search indexes required

Content delivery






Content management




sitecore_analytics_index (queried here)









sitecore_analytics_index (built here)

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