Index Creation and Ingest

The Globus Search Index stores the metadata for your search potral, and Globus Portal Framework queries and presents this information in a way that’s convenient for users. No search metadata is stored directly on the portal, rather the portal is only a graphical interface for constructing search queries for users and presenting the information in a digestable fashion.

Before any work can be done on a portal, the search index must first be created in Globus Search and metadata ingested into it. Once the search index can be queried for information, the portal can be configured to display results for users.

Creating the Index

There are a few different tutorials on creating a search index and ingesting data into it. If you want a deeper dive beyond the basics, see the resouces below:

The Globus CLI can now be used to manage index settings. Use the following to get started:

pipx install globus-cli
globus search index create myindex "A description of my index"

Should return something that looks like:

Index ID:     3e2525cc-e8c1-49cd-bef5-a9566770d74c
Display Name: myindex
Status:       open

Take note of the Index ID UUID returned by this command, this will be used later to point your portal at your new search index.

Ingesting Metadata


See the reference ingest document for a real-world example. The document below is oversimplified for readablility.

Metadata within Globus Search is unstructured and can be tailored to the specific needs of the project. In simple terms, a search result is a JSON document with a “subject” containing user defined content. See the simple-ingest-doc.json below:

    "ingest_type": "GMetaList",
    "ingest_data": {
        "gmeta": [
                "id": "metadata",
                "subject": "globus://ddb59af0-6d04-11e5-ba46-22000b92c6ec/share/godata/file1.txt",
                "visible_to": ["public"],
                "content": {
                    "title": "File Number 1",
                    "url": "globus://ddb59af0-6d04-11e5-ba46-22000b92c6ec/share/godata/file1.txt",
                    "author": "Data Researcher",
                    "tags": ["globus", "tutorial", "file"],
                    "date": "2022-11-15T12:31:28.560098",
                    "times_accessed": 23974,
                    "original_collection_name": "Globus Tutorial Endpoint 1"

The document can be ingested into your index above with the following:

globus search ingest my-index-uuid simple-ingest-doc.json

Working from inside out, everything under the content block is completely defined by the user. Each new ingested field Globus Search detects will be scanned and indexed, and can be searched upon immediately after ingest. visible_to defines access, and subject is a unique identifier for the search result. id defines different independent sub-categories under subject.


Field types in Globus Search may only be set once the first time you ingest a new field. Types may not change for the lifetime of the index. Setting new types requires the index to be either reset or recreated. Both require emailing support at

For example above: “author” and “url” are both string types, and future ingest for those fields must also be strings. Non-string values will raise an error if the types change.

That’s it for the actual metadata. The outer envelope of the sample above ingest_data and gmeta defines the document as a search ingest document. See the ingest documentation for more info.

Portal Configuration

Copy-paste the following SEARCH_INDEXES dictionary in myportal/ to define one or more search indices. Use the UUID of the index you created in Index Creation and Ingest.

# List of search indices managed by the portal
    'my-index-slug': {
        'name': 'My Search Index',
        'uuid': 'my-index-uuid',

The configuration above consists of three pieces of information:

  • my-index-slug – The slug for your index. This will map to the browser url and can be any reasonable value.

  • name – The name for your index. This shows up in some templates and can be any value.

  • uuid – The UUID of your index. This can be found with the globus search index list command line with the Globus CLI.

You should now have enough information to run your new portal. If the Django server is already running, make sure to refresh your webpage, otherwise start the server.

python runserver localhost:8000

Your index name should show up on the index selection page at http://localhost:8000, and the search record should now show up at http://localhost:8000/my-index-slug/. The existing record can be edited by re-ingesting the same subject with different content, or new records can be created by changing the subject.

Next, we will add facets to this portal.