Tag: Docker

Building Docker images and publishing ports

One of the most challenging tasks in a production environment with Docker is to build images and publish ports. As promised in the previous article I will publish more articles on Docker images. So, here we are! For those who missed the previous articles on Docker, firstly we have the basic installation of Docker and some basic commands and secondly, we have an article dedicated about 30 basic commands to start with Docker container. Note that all illustrations and commands in this blog post have been tested on Fedora.

Building Docker images

What is a Docker image? Firstly, we need to understand what is an image. It is a compressed self-piece of software. Once unwrapped, it becomes meaningful to use because it’s all about the functionality that makes the image useful. An image could contain software, operating system, a service, etc.. On the other hand, the Docker image is created by a series or sequence of commands written to a file called “Dockerfile”.  Whenever you execute the Dockerfile using Docker command, it will output an image, thus, a Docker image. In this blog post, we are going to build a Docker image using existing Docker image.

1. As described in the article “30 basic commands to start with Docker container” in part 3, to view the current images available you can use the following command:

docker images

2. In my case, I have a Centos image. My goal is to make a Docker image which has Apache web server already pre-installed. Now, there are two methods to create an image from the existing one. The first is the commit method with the Docker commit command which is not extensively used due to less flexibility. The other is by creating a Docker file. In my home directory, I created a directory at /home/webserver. Now, this directory will be used to build up the web server. You can also create an index.html file to be used as the index page of the web server. Use the following basic commands:

mkdir /home/webserver && touch /home/webserver/{index.html,Dockerfile}

3. I then edited the index.html. Let’s enter some random phrase in it for testing purpose.

This is a test by TheTunnelix

4. Edit the Dockerfile and define the Dockerfile as indicated below. From the comment section, I gave some explanations for each line:

FROM centos:latest # Take the latest image.
LABEL tunnelix.com <[email protected]> # Just a reference using my E-mail.
RUN yum install httpd -y # Run the command to install HTTPD.
COPY index.html /var/www/html # Copy from webserver folder to the docroot.
CMD ["/usr/sbin/httpd", "-D", "FOREGROUND"] # Always launch the binary to start the daemon HTTPD.
EXPOSE 80 # Run Apache on port 80. This port need to be exposed to run the HTTPD webserver.

5. Now, point yourself in the directory where your Dockerfile and index.html is located. We will build the image using the Dockerfile using docker build command.

docker build -t centos:apache .

6. You can check it using the command docker images and you should notice that a new image has been created which has been tagged with apache. You also view details all steps using the following command:

docker images -a

7.  To run it, you can use:

docker run -dit --name=ApacheTunnelix centos:apache

At this stage, a docker ps will show you the container running. Remember from the article “30 commands to start with Docker container” in part 24, we learned that Docker will create a bridge. You can check it using docker network ls. You can also confirm it using the command brctl show command.

8. When launching the command docker inspect in the section containers, I can notice my container is accessible with the IPAddress and same is accessible on my browser with the same content of the index.html file created in section 3. You can also check it using the following curl command:


Publishing the port

9. The point is that the container ApacheTunnelix with IPAddress is not available outside the physical host onto which I am running my Docker engine. The catch is that we need to go through a step called publishing ports.

10. I will now create another web server to better differentiate between the container (ApacheTunnelix) accessible locally and that another container (Let’s call it ApacheTunnelixProd) which need to be accessible on the same network of the Physical machine. I copied the directory /home/webserver to /home/webserverprod and pointed myself inside the directory webserverprod.

cp -rp /home/webserver /home/webserverprod && cd /home/webserverprod

11. For my own reference, I change the index.html to:

This is a test by TheTunnelix on Prod.

12. Repeat step 5 by building a new image with a new name:

docker build -t centos:apacheProd

13. Compare to step 7 where we have run the container without publishing the port, this time we will run it by publishing the port from outside the physical machine. By default, the container will run on port 80. To make it accessible, say on port 5000, we use the following command:

docker run -dit --name=ApacheTunnelixProd -p 5000:80 centos:apacheProd

14. By now the container should be accessible on any IP on the network of the local machine including localhost. In my case, the IP address of my physical machine is You can test it using the command:


Or you can simply access your machine from a browser:

15. A docker ps is of great importance to understand as same will show you from the source and destination of the port mapping. Another interesting command to understand the port mapping is the docker port. For example:

docker port ApacheTunnelixProd

This will show the following result:

80/tcp ->

In the next article on Docker, I will share some more interesting tips on Docker Networking. keep in touch and comment below for suggestions and improvements.


  • EXPOSE allows anyone outside the container to access the web server on the port 80. If you do not expose it, the web server will not be accessible outside the container.
  • CMD allows you to run a command as soon as the container is launched. CMD is different from RUN. RUN is used whilst building the image and CMD is used whilst launching the image.
  • Always check the official Docker documentation when creating Dockerfile.
  • You always stop a running container using the command docker stop <name of the container>. For example, docker stop ApacheTunnelixProd.
  • Also, you can remove a container with the command docker rm <name of the container>. For example, docker rm ApacheTunnelixProd.


As explained by Arnaud Bonnet, one should be careful when using distributions such as Centos, Debian etc which can be vulnerable. So auditing is important prior before deploying on Production. A look into Alpine and BusyBox can be very useful.

Also, the MAINTAINER has been deprecated and now used by LABEL. Arnaud gave some examples such as:

LABEL com.example.version=”0.0.1-beta”
LABEL vendor=”ACME Incorporated”
LABEL com.example.release-date=”2015-02-12″
LABEL com.example.version.is-production=”

30 basic commands to start with Docker Container

It’s been a long time, I did not blog anything about Docker. In the article Installing, Updating and Playing around with a Docker container that dated back to the year 2016, I showed some basics on Docker installation and some basic commands to start with. Time to dive a little bit deeper into the basics of Docker. For installation on Fedora Operating system, please see the official installation of Docker on the Docker webpage. All commands and illustrations on this blog post have been tested on Fedora. Once Docker installed, there are various interesting commands you can adventure around.

Starting up with Docker containerization

1. Searching for CentOS image with the most stars:

docker search --filter=stars=100 centos

2. You can also pull an image:

docker pull centos

3. To view the images, simply do this:

docker images

4. You can also run the container/images

docker run  -it --name=centostunnelix centos /bin/bash

5. When you run containers and even after exiting, you cannot re-run it again, because that container name, in my case centostunnelix, was used previously. Note that the container has been stopped and not removed! You will find it stopped using the following command:

docker ps -a

6. You can now start the container back:

docker start centostunnelix

7. And after starting it, you can simply stop the container:

docker stop centostunnelix

8. You can also gracefully remove it:

docker rm centostunnelix

9. Also renamed it to another instance, for example, centosprod in this case:

docker rename centostunnelix centosprod

10. A Docker in exited mode means that the changes you made are still there. However, it is still not running. You can now run it either by connecting directly to it or simply run it in the background and attach to it whilst it is running.

docker start centosprod
docker attach centosprod

Warming up with Docker…

11. Moreover, if you need to detach from the container without stopping it, you simply need to do the following two key combination one after each other. It is a good practice to check it using docker ps -a though:

Ctrl+p and Ctrl+q

12. But this keys combination can be painful and as a good practice after starting a Docker container, use the following command to get into the container and by typing Ctrl+d or exit to keep your container still up and running:

docker exec -it centosprod /bin/bash 

13. To get the last container that you have run using the following command:

docker ps -l

14. To see all the commands that have been executed inside a container with its timestamp, use the following command:

docker logs centosprod -t

15. You can also pause and unpause containers which are actually freezing and unfreezing it using the following commands:

docker pause centosprod
docker unpause centosprod

16. Imagine you want to run a container, but as soon as you exit from the container, it should get destroyed immediately. For that to be done, you need to start the container with the following command:

docker run --rm --it centosprod /bin/bash

Docker Hub

17. The Docker Hub is a library and community for Docker container images. You can access it at hub.docker.com and created an account to it. Then, from your Terminal, use the following command to log in to the Docker Hub.

docker login

18. As explained in part 3, to see the list of images created, you can use docker images. Note that image ID is the same. However, to push an image to your repository, firstly, you need to give a tag to the image using the following command:

docker image tag centos thetunnelix/centostunnelix

19. By now, if you launch again the command docker images, you will see the same images under a new name tag. To upload it to your repository using the following command:

docker image push thetunnelix/centostunnelix

20. You can also delete an image locally using the following command:

docker image rm -f centostunnelix

21. To retrieve back your image use the following command:

docker pull thetunnelix/centostunnelix

Let’s dive into Networking

22. Once into the Docker container, the command ipconfig is not present. I have installed the package net-tools using the command yum install net-tools -y. After installing the package, after firing an ipconfig, you would notice that the network card has been assigned with an IP address. On your physical machine, launch the following command to see your connection names, UUID, Type and Devices. You will see a connection name docker0 as a bridge:

nmcli connection show

23. To see how many virtual connected devices to docker0, you can use the following command:

brctl show docker0

24. Since Docker, create a virtual bridge on the machine, you can also see it using the following command:

docker network ls

25. To get more details about the network configuration of each container use the following:

docker network inspect bridge

26. So, we have seen by default docker create a bridge and all containers are assigned IP from that bridge only. However, we can also create another bridge and also specifying the gateway as well as the subnet which is pretty interesting:

docker network create tunnel0 --subnet --gateway

27. Once you have created a new network bridge, you can use again the command docker network ls and docker network inspect bridge to confirm if the bridge has been created. Now, to start a container in the subnet, simply use the following command that was used in step 4 but this time with the argument –net <name of virtual bridge>:

docker run -it --net tunnel0 --name=centosprodnew centos /bin/bash

28. In step 27, we have seen how to create a container for a particular network. Imagine that you want to attach the same container to “bridge” that has been created by default. You would notice it using the command docker network ls. To connect it to “bridge”, use the following command.

docker network connect bridge centosprodnew

29. To disconnect it from “bridge”, simply do the following:

docker network disconnect bridge centosprodnew

30. To get logs at host level launch the following command:

journalctl -u docker.service


  • You can run directly an image, for example, docker run fedora even if you did not pull it. Docker will automatically pull it and run it for you.
  • Every time you run a container with a different container name, it will assign a unique ID to it under the directory /var/lib/docker/containers. For every container, you have a unique ID and docker ps -aq will show you the containers.
  • When a name is not specified when starting a Docker container, Docker will assign names to it; it could be a really funny name.
  • Imagine that you are exiting from a container and you want the container to be removed automatically.
  • Always remember, whenever you start a Docker container, a unique ID will be allocated to the container and a filesystem will be allocated and mounts as Read/Write for the container. It will also allocate a Network/Bridge interface following an IP assignment and finally the process execution by the user.
  • By default, all Docker containers will be assigned an IP address range from docker0.
  • You can also create a container by using the argument –hostname and by default docker will append the /etc/hosts file with the IP and hostname of the container.
  • Virtual network binds to the bridge which creates a virtual subnet shared between the host and every virtual container. It’s basically a NAT rule that allows containers to talk to the internet but not the other way around. This concept is similar to the option of NAT in Virtual Box.
  • In step 28, “bridge” is the name of the virtual bridge that has been created by default in Docker.

If you liked these Docker basics and have any question please comment below. In future articles, I will focus on building Docker images and publish ports, Docker Swarm, Kubernetes with Docker, Metrics, and Monitoring of Docker containers etc.


Installing, Updating and Playing around with a Docker container

Docker will probably be on heavy development those days. This article will be dedicated to most of the basics to install and update a docker instance and some tips to play around. In the future, I will get into details about Docker Engine, Images, Containers, Volumes and Networking in the context of Docker. I have reserved this blog for the installation of Docker, get updates from the official channel and perform some basic daemon configs. So what is Docker? “Docker provides an integrated technology suite that enables developers and IT operations teams to build, ship, and run distributed applications anywhere.” – Docker

A nice experience is to use a Virtual Box machine running on a Centos machine. My physical machine is running an Ubuntu.

Centos 6 Machine:

1. To install docker do a

yum install docker-io

2. Start the docker service

service docker start

3. check the docker version and new version available as well as the info

docker -v
docker version
docker info

Screenshot from 2016-02-26 23-49-21

4. You can also check for the number of containers, images, storage and execution driver details the command.

docker info

Let’s now see how to update Docker. Prior before performing an upgrade, it’s important to perform a backup of images. To get a new docker version, you will need to add a docker repo to get the new version and launch an update. You can check back the version with the command docker -v Just update your repository and launch an update. Check out the docker docs at this link.

Docker needs root to perform major actions like the creation of namespaces and cgroups. Docker also uses the /var/run/docker.sock which is own by root and is found in the group docker. So normal users can be added to the group docker by keeping security control to the docker group.

Screenshot from 2016-02-27 01-31-14

5. Lets try running an instance with the following command using the user called “nitin”: The command simply means lets run docker run to start a new container -it to make it interactive and assigned it a tty and same will be used by a ubuntu image and a bash process will be run inside the container.

docker run -it ubuntu /bin/bash

6. If the user “nitin” is not found in the group “docker” same would not run. To add the user simply use the following command. As you can see here “nitin” is the user which is being added to the group “docker”

gpasswd -a nitin docker

Now, when the command is being launched you would notice the download in progress.

Screenshot from 2016-02-27 01-45-13

Afterward, you will find yourself landed inside the container itself. Cool isn’t it? I am now inside an Ubuntu container from the Centos Virtual Machine. The number 7fa21bcf66b5 is the short form the container unique ID.

Screenshot from 2016-02-27 01-58-17

Type exit to get back to the Virtual machine. More articles coming later on Docker. 

7. To go on the docker hub and see all container images  related to CentOS:

docker search centos


  • On Centos7 machine, a simple curl -fsSL https://get.docker.com/ | sh would do the installation for the latest version
  • Always create a user for the docker application, the add docker to the group with usermod -aG docker docker-user
  • On CentOS, when firing the docker version | grep Storage, you would noticed that the Default storage driver is ‘device mapper’ compared to Ubuntu which is by default AUFS
  • Docker needs root to work. You can see that a ls -l /var/run/docker.sock is assigned by default with user root and group docker. So normal users can be added to the group dockers to allow then to run and break docker without to be root.