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MongoDB Manual

Operations Checklist

On this page

  • Filesystem
  • Replication
  • Sharding
  • Journaling: WiredTiger Storage Engine
  • Hardware
  • Deployments to Cloud Hardware
  • Operating System Configuration
  • Backups
  • Monitoring
  • Load Balancing
  • Security

The following checklist, along with the Development Checklist list, provides recommendations to help you avoid issues in your production MongoDB deployment.

  • Verify that all non-hidden replica set members are identically provisioned in terms of their RAM, CPU, disk, network setup, etc.

  • Configure the oplog size to suit your use case:

    • The replication oplog window should cover normal maintenance and downtime windows to avoid the need for a full resync.

    • The replication oplog window should cover the time needed to restore a replica set member from the last backup.


      The replication oplog window doesn't need to cover the time needed to restore a replica set member via initial sync as the oplog records are pulled during the data copy. However, the member being restored must have enough disk space in the local database to temporarily store these oplog records for the duration of this data copy stage.

  • Ensure that your replica set includes at least three data-bearing voting members that run with journaling and that you issue writes with w: majority write concern for availability and durability.

  • Use hostnames when configuring replica set members, rather than IP addresses.

  • Ensure full bidirectional network connectivity between all mongod instances.

  • Ensure that each host can resolve itself.

  • Ensure that your replica set contains an odd number of voting members.

  • Ensure that mongod instances have 0 or 1 votes.

  • For high availability, deploy your replica set into a minimum of three data centers.

  • Place your config servers on dedicated hardware for optimal performance in large clusters. Ensure that the hardware has enough RAM to hold the data files entirely in memory and that it has dedicated storage.

  • Deploy mongos routers in accordance with the Production Configuration guidelines.

  • Use NTP to synchronize the clocks on all components of your sharded cluster.

  • Ensure full bidirectional network connectivity between mongod, mongos, and config servers.

  • Use CNAMEs to identify your config servers to the cluster so that you can rename and renumber your config servers without downtime.

  • Ensure that all instances use journaling.

  • Place the journal on its own low-latency disk for write-intensive workloads. Note that this will affect snapshot-style backups as the files constituting the state of the database will reside on separate volumes.

  • Use RAID10 and SSD drives for optimal performance.

  • SAN and Virtualization:

    • Ensure that each mongod has provisioned IOPS for its dbPath, or has its own physical drive or LUN.

    • Avoid dynamic memory features, such as memory ballooning, when running in virtual environments.

    • Avoid placing all replica set members on the same SAN, as the SAN can be a single point of failure.

  • Windows Azure: Adjust the TCP keepalive (tcp_keepalive_time) to 100-120. The TCP idle timeout on the Azure load balancer is too slow for MongoDB's connection pooling behavior. See: Azure Production Notes for more information.

  • Use MongoDB version 2.6.4 or later on systems with high-latency storage, such as Windows Azure, as these versions include performance improvements for those systems.

  • Turn off transparent hugepages. See Transparent Huge Pages Settings for more information.

  • Adjust the readahead settings on the devices storing your database files.

    • For the WiredTiger storage engine, set readahead between 8 and 32 regardless of storage media type (spinning disk, SSD, etc.), unless testing shows a measurable, repeatable, and reliable benefit in a higher readahead value.

      MongoDB commercial support can provide advice and guidance on alternate readahead configurations.

  • If using tuned on RHEL / CentOS, you must customize your tuned profile. Many of the tuned profiles that ship with RHEL / CentOS can negatively impact performance with their default settings. Customize your chosen tuned profile to:

  • Use the cfq or deadline disk schedulers for SSDs.

  • Use the cfq disk scheduler for virtualized drives in guest VMs.

  • Disable NUMA or set vm.zone_reclaim_mode to 0 and run mongod instances with node interleaving. See: MongoDB and NUMA Hardware for more information.

  • Adjust the ulimit values on your hardware to suit your use case. If multiple mongod or mongos instances are running under the same user, scale the ulimit values accordingly. See: UNIX ulimit Settings for more information.

  • Use noatime for the dbPath mount point.

  • Configure sufficient file handles (fs.file-max), kernel pid limit (kernel.pid_max), maximum threads per process (kernel.threads-max), and maximum number of memory map areas per process (vm.max_map_count) for your deployment. For large systems, the following values provide a good starting point:

    • fs.file-max value of 98000,

    • kernel.pid_max value of 64000,

    • kernel.threads-max value of 64000, and

    • vm.max_map_count value of 102400

  • Ensure that your system has swap space configured. Refer to your operating system's documentation for details on appropriate sizing.

  • Ensure that the system default TCP keepalive is set correctly. A value of 120 often provides better performance for replica sets and sharded clusters. See: Does TCP keepalive time affect MongoDB Deployments? in the Frequently Asked Questions for more information.

  • Schedule periodic tests of your back up and restore process to have time estimates on hand, and to verify its functionality.

  • Use MongoDB Cloud Manager or Ops Manager, an on-premise solution available in MongoDB Enterprise Advanced or another monitoring system to monitor key database metrics and set up alerts for them. Include alerts for the following metrics:

    • replication lag

    • replication oplog window

    • assertions

    • queues

    • page faults

  • Monitor hardware statistics for your servers. In particular, pay attention to the disk use, CPU, and available disk space.

    In the absence of disk space monitoring, or as a precaution:

    • Create a dummy 4 GB file on the storage.dbPath drive to ensure available space if the disk becomes full.

    • A combination of cron+df can alert when disk space hits a high-water mark, if no other monitoring tool is available.

  • Configure load balancers to enable "sticky sessions" or "client affinity", with a sufficient timeout for existing connections.

  • Avoid placing load balancers between MongoDB cluster or replica set components.

For a list of security measures to protect your MongoDB installation, see the MongoDB Security Checklist.


Production Notes


Development Checklist