Upgrade a Sharded Cluster to 3.6


  • MongoDB 3.6 is not tested on APFS, the new filesystem in macOS 10.13 and may encounter errors.

  • Starting in MongoDB 3.6.13, MongoDB 3.6-series removes support for Ubuntu 16.04 PPCLE.

    For earlier MongODB Enterprise versions that support Ubuntu 16.04 POWER/PPC64LE:

    Due to a lock elision bug present in older versions of the glibc package on Ubuntu 16.04 for POWER, you must upgrade the glibc package to at least glibc 2.23-0ubuntu5 before running MongoDB. Systems with older versions of the glibc package will experience database server crashes and misbehavior due to random memory corruption, and are unsuitable for production deployments of MongoDB


Before you attempt any upgrade, please familiarize yourself with the content of this document.

If you need guidance on upgrading to 3.6, MongoDB offers major version upgrade services to help ensure a smooth transition without interruption to your MongoDB application.

Upgrade Recommendations and Checklists

When upgrading, consider the following:

Upgrade Version Path

To upgrade an existing MongoDB deployment to 3.6, you must be running a 3.4-series release.

To upgrade from a version earlier than the 3.4-series, you must successively upgrade major releases until you have upgraded to 3.4-series. For example, if you are running a 3.2-series, you must upgrade first to 3.4 before you can upgrade to 3.6.


Before beginning your upgrade, see the Compatibility Changes in MongoDB 3.6 document to ensure that your applications and deployments are compatible with MongoDB 3.6. Resolve the incompatibilities in your deployment before starting the upgrade.

Before upgrading MongoDB, always test your application in a staging environment before deploying the upgrade to your production environment.

Downgrade Consideration

Once upgraded to 3.6, if you need to downgrade, we recommend downgrading to the latest patch release of 3.4.

Default Bind to Localhost

Starting in MongoDB 3.6, mongod and mongos instances bind to localhost by default. Remote clients, including other members of the replica set, cannot connect to an instance bound only to localhost. To override and bind to other ip addresses, use the net.bindIp configuration file setting or the --bind_ip command-line option to specify a list of ip addresses.

The upgrade process will require that you specify the net.bindIp setting (or --bind_ip) if your sharded cluster members are run on different hosts or if you wish remote clients to connect to your sharded cluster.


Before binding to a non-localhost (e.g. publicly accessible) IP address, ensure you have secured your cluster from unauthorized access. For a complete list of security recommendations, see Security Checklist. At minimum, consider enabling authentication and hardening network infrastructure.

For more information, see Localhost Binding Compatibility Changes

Shard Replica Sets

Starting in MongoDB 3.6, mongod instances with the shard server role must be replica set members.

To upgrade your sharded cluster to version 3.6, the shard servers must be running as a replica set. To convert an existing shard standalone instance to a shard replica set, see Convert a Shard Standalone to a Shard Replica Set.


For MongoDB 3.6.0 - 3.6.3 binaries, you should upgrade your drivers to 3.6 feature compatible drivers only after you have upgraded the MongoDB binaries and updated the feature compatibility version of the sharded cluster to 3.6.

For more information, see SERVER-33763 .

Read Concern Majority

Starting in MongoDB 3.6, MongoDB enables support for "majority" read concern by default.

For MongoDB 3.6.1 - 3.6.x, however, you can disable read concern "majority" to prevent the storage cache pressure from immobilizing a deployment with a primary-secondary-arbiter (PSA) architecture. Disabling "majority" read concern also disables support for Change Streams

For more information, see Disable Read Concern Majority.


  • Version 3.4 or Greater

    To upgrade a sharded cluster to 3.6, all members of the cluster must be at least version 3.4. The upgrade process checks all components of the cluster and will produce warnings if any component is running version earlier than 3.4.

  • Feature Compatibility Version

    The 3.4 sharded cluster must have featureCompatibilityVersion set to 3.4.

    To ensure that all members of the sharded cluster have featureCompatibilityVersion set to 3.4, connect to each shard replica set member and each config server replica set member and check the featureCompatibilityVersion:


    For a sharded cluster that has access control enabled, to run the following command against a shard replica set member, you must connect to the member as a shard local user.

    db.adminCommand( { getParameter: 1, featureCompatibilityVersion: 1 } )

    All members should return a result that includes "featureCompatibilityVersion": "3.4".

    To set or update featureCompatibilityVersion, run the following command on the mongos:

    db.adminCommand( { setFeatureCompatibilityVersion: "3.4" } )

    For more information, see setFeatureCompatibilityVersion.

  • Shard Aware

    The shards in the 3.4 sharded clusters must be shard aware (i.e. the shards must have received their shardIdentity document, located in the admin.system.version collection):

    • For sharded clusters that started as 3.4, the shards are shard aware.

    • For 3.4 sharded clusters that were upgraded from 3.2-series, when you update featureCompatibilityVersion from 3.2 to 3.4, the config server attempts to send the shards their respective shardIdentity document every 30 seconds until success. You must wait until all shards receive the documents.

    • To check whether a shard replica set member has received its shardIdentity document, issue the find command against the system.version collection in the admin database and check for a document where "_id" : "shardIdentity".

      For an example of a shardIdentity document:

        "_id" : "shardIdentity",
        "clusterId" : ObjectId("2bba123c6eeedcd192b19024"),
        "shardName" : "shard2",
        "configsvrConnectionString" : "configDbRepl/alpha.example.net:28100,beta.example.net:28100,charlie.example.net:28100" }
  • Disable the balancer

  • Back up the config Database

    Optional but Recommended. As a precaution, take a backup of the config database before upgrading the sharded cluster.

Download 3.6 Binaries

Use Package Manager

If you installed MongoDB from the MongoDB apt, yum, dnf, or zypper repositories, you should upgrade to 3.6 using your package manager.

Follow the appropriate 3.6 installation instructions for your Linux system. This will involve adding a repository for the new release, then performing the actual upgrade process.

Download 3.6 Binaries Manually

If you have not installed MongoDB using a package manager, you can manually download the MongoDB binaries from the MongoDB Download Center .

See 3.6 installation instructions for more information.

Upgrade Process


Disable the Balancer.

Connect a mongo shell to a mongos instance in the sharded cluster, and run sh.stopBalancer() to disable the balancer:



If a migration is in progress, the system will complete the in-progress migration before stopping the balancer. You can run sh.isBalancerRunning() to check the balancer’s current state.

To verify that the balancer is disabled, run sh.getBalancerState(), which returns false if the balancer is disabled:


For more information on disabling the balancer, see Disable the Balancer.


Upgrade the config servers.

  1. Upgrade the secondary members of the replica set one at a time:

    1. Shut down the secondary mongod instance and replace the 3.4 binary with the 3.6 binary.

    2. Start the 3.6 binary with the --configsvr,