'Too many words retrieved in index' message

Last Reviewed: August 3, 2013

Article: DTS0119


Applies to: dtSearch (all versions)


Executing a search causes dtSearch to display a "Too many words retrieved in index" message.


dtSearch limits the number of unique words (not hits) that can be retrieved in a search. A search for * or *a* that retrieves thousands of words would exceed this limit.

Additional Information

The limit on the number of unique words that can be retrieved in a single search is determined by the maxWordsToRetrieve option setting in dtSearch.  In dtSearch 7, the default limit is 64,000 words, and the maximum allowed value for this limit is 524,288.

How to change the maxWordsToRetrieve option setting:

dtSearch Desktop: Click Options > Preferences > Search Options, and change the setting for "Maximum number of unique words to match before halting a search."

dtSearch Engine (.NET, Visual Basic) Use the Options.MaxWordsToRetrieve property

dtSearch Engine (C/C++) Use the maxWordsToRetrieve member of dtsOptions

dtSearch Engine (Java) Use the maxWordsToRetrieve member of the Options object

The space required for words in a search request is allocated as needed, so the maxWordsToRetrieve limit specifies the maximum amount of memory that will be allocated for a search.

Unless you search for a term like *a*, it is very unusual to get anywhere near this limit even with huge databases, because the number of words you retrieve is generally a function of the specificity of the search rather than the size of the database.