This is for my elasticsearch application, which terminates at startup showing :

bootstrap checks failed
[1]: max file descriptors [4096] for elasticsearch process is too low, increase to at least [65536]

I made changes in my limits.conf file for changing nofile to 65536 as below:

*       soft    nofile  65536
*       hard    nofile  65536

and restarted a new session for the same user (non-root user), but when i open a new session first thing i get on my terminal is:

bash: ulimit: max user processes: cannot modify limit: Operation not permitted

and my ulimit does not change as well. What could be the reason? though i am successfully able to change it for root user.

1 Answer 1


From here I see that three files have to be changed:

  1. /etc/systemd/user.conf
  2. /etc/systemd/system.conf, and
  3. /etc/security/limits.conf

In the first two add the following line in addition to the changes you made in the third file:


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