How to setup Solr with Oscar

Apache Solr is Oscar’s recommended production-grade search backend. This how-to describes how to get Solr running, and integrated with Oscar. The instructions below are tested on an Debian/Ubuntu machine, but should be applicable for similar environments. A working Java or OpenJDK version 8 installation are necessary.

Python Package

You will need to install the pysolr Python package. Or add it to your requirements.txt:

$ pip install pysolr

Installing Solr

You first need to fetch and extract Solr. The schema included with Oscar is tested with Solr 6.6.6:

$ wget -O ${HOME}/solr-6.6.6.tgz
$ tar xzf ${HOME}/solr-6.6.6.tgz --directory=${HOME}
$ ln -s ${HOME}/solr-6.6.6 ${HOME}/solr


For development this will presume the solr directory is in the users HOME directory. (For an actual deployment this may be better placed in /opt).

Start Solr and Create a Core

Next start up Solr and create a core named sandbox this name will be used through out this howto, change sandbox to something that suits your installation. This step also sets up up the directory structure and a basic configuration.

$ cd ${HOME}/solr
$ ./bin/solr start
$ ./bin/solr create -c sandbox -n basic_config

Integrating with Haystack

Haystack provides an abstraction layer on top of different search backends and integrates with Django. The Haystack connection settings in your for the config above will look like this:

# Solr 6.x
    'default': {
        'ENGINE': 'haystack.backends.solr_backend.SolrEngine',
        'URL': '',
        'ADMIN_URL': '',
        'INCLUDE_SPELLING': True,

To use Solr with the Sandbox locally comment out the HAYSTACK_CONNECTIONS section using the WhooshEngine and uncomment the Solr 6.x section like this one.

Build Solr schema

Next, get Oscar to generate the schema.xml and solrconfig.xml for Solr.

$ ./ build_solr_schema --configure-directory=${HOME}/solr/server/solr/sandbox/conf
$ ./ build_solr_schema --reload-core sandbox


If using this Solr install with the Sandbox locally ensure the steps up to this point have been done prior to running make sandbox in the Run the sandbox locally instructions.

Rebuild search index

If all is well, you should now be able to rebuild the search index.

$ ./ rebuild_index --noinput
Removing all documents from your index because you said so.
All documents removed.
Indexing 201 Products

If the indexing succeeded, search in Oscar will be working. Search for any term in the search box on your Oscar site, and you should get results.