by John M Costa, III

Installing Redis on Docker

I’m currently employed by dotCloud and had an opportunity to play around with our open sourced linux container runtime project called Docker.

You’ll need to have an functional version of docker to follow these steps. I’ve included an overview of my notes for installation, however you can find additional installation instructions at the docker website.

Introduction to Docker

If you’ve already worked with docker, you can skip this part. You already have docker installed and probably are running your own containers. If you haven’t, here’s a general overview to a handful of docker commands. Please read on.

I’m working on a MBA, so I ran through the MacOS instructions which are repeated below. It will require that you already have VirtualBox and Vagrant already installed. If you don’t have these, you can find the getting started docs here.

First clone the repo and cd into the cloned repository:

$ git clone && cd docker

Now, a quick vagrant up and vagrant ssh and I was already issuing docker commands.

Also note: I’ve intentionally left out the vagrant output as there’s nothing too important there. It took about 1 minute to complete.

$ vagrant up
$ vagrant ssh

vagrant@vagrant-ubuntu-12:/opt/go/src/$ docker ps

vagrant@vagrant-ubuntu-12:/opt/go/src/$ docker images
REPOSITORY          TAG                 ID                  CREATED             PARENT

vagrant@vagrant-ubuntu-12:/opt/go/src/$ docker version
Git Commit:

So far so good! Now lets run a shell within a docker container.

docker run -i -t base /bin/bash
Image base not found, trying to pull it from registry.
Pulling repository base
Pulling tag base:ubuntu-quantl
Pulling b750fe79269d2ec9a3c593ef05b4332b1d1a02a62b4accb2c21d589ff2f5f2dc metadata
Pulling b750fe79269d2ec9a3c593ef05b4332b1d1a02a62b4accb2c21d589ff2f5f2dc fs layer
10240/10240 (100%)
Pulling 27cf784147099545 metadata
Pulling 27cf784147099545 fs layer
94863360/94863360 (100%)
Pulling tag base:latest
Pulling tag base:ubuntu-12.10
Pulling tag base:ubuntu-quantal

So, what have we done here? We’ve called run, which runs our command in a new container, and passed a few docker specific parameters. These include, -i, to keep stdin open, and -t to allocate a pseudo-tty. And finally the command we’re running is /bin/bash to give us a bash shell.

An interesting side effect is that we now have a docker base image locally. We can see this when we run docker images.

$ docker images
REPOSITORY          TAG                 ID                  CREATED             PARENT
base                latest              b750fe79269d        12 days ago         27cf78414709
base                ubuntu-12.10        b750fe79269d        12 days ago         27cf78414709
base                ubuntu-quantal      b750fe79269d        12 days ago         27cf78414709
base                ubuntu-quantl       b750fe79269d        12 days ago         27cf78414709
<none>              <none>              27cf78414709        12 days ago

Lastly, lets exit out of our docker container, and you should see the following:

SIGINT received

Let’s check the status of our docker container:

vagrant@vagrant-ubuntu-12:/opt/go/src/$ docker ps
ID             IMAGE         COMMAND      CREATED          STATUS          COMMENT
9468f9c097f7   base:latest   /bin/bash    25 minutes ago   Up 25 minutes

It looks like its still running…ok lets stop it:

vagrant@vagrant-ubuntu-12:/opt/go/src/$ docker stop 9468f9c097f7

Let’s make sure that it’s really gone:

$ docker ps

Installing and running Redis within a docker container

Now that we have a notion of what going on with docker commands and installation, lets start loading it up with the tools we’ll need for running a redis server within a docker container.

Start up a new container using the base image.

$ docker run -i -t base /bin/bash

Lets update our system packages from what’s included in our base image:

root@b9859484e68f:/# apt-get update
Ign quantal InRelease
Hit quantal Release.gpg
Hit quantal Release
Hit quantal/main amd64 Packages
Get:1 quantal/universe amd64 Packages [5274 kB]
Get:2 quantal/multiverse amd64 Packages [131 kB]
Get:3 quantal/main Translation-en [660 kB]
Get:4 quantal/multiverse Translation-en [100 kB]
Get:5 quantal/universe Translation-en [3648 kB]
Fetched 9813 kB in 17s (557 kB/s)
Reading package lists... Done

Now install telnet and our redis-server:

root@b9859484e68f:/# apt-get install telnet redis-server
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree... Done
The following extra packages will be installed:
  libidn11 libjemalloc1
The following NEW packages will be installed:
  libidn11 libjemalloc1 redis-server telnet wget
0 upgraded, 5 newly installed, 0 to remove and 0 not upgraded.
Need to get 784 kB of archives.
After this operation, 1968 kB of additional disk space will be used.
Get:1 quantal/main libidn11 amd64 1.25-2 [119 kB]
Get:2 quantal/universe libjemalloc1 amd64 3.0.0-3 [85.9 kB]
Get:3 quantal/main telnet amd64 0.17-36build2 [67.1 kB]
Get:4 quantal/main wget amd64 1.13.4-3ubuntu1 [280 kB]
Get:5 quantal/universe redis-server amd64 2:2.4.15-1 [233 kB]
Fetched 784 kB in 2s (334 kB/s)
dpkg-preconfigure: unable to re-open stdin: No such file or directory
Selecting previously unselected package libidn11:amd64.
(Reading database ... 9893 files and directories currently installed.)
Unpacking libidn11:amd64 (from .../libidn11_1.25-2_amd64.deb) ...
Selecting previously unselected package libjemalloc1.
Unpacking libjemalloc1 (from .../libjemalloc1_3.0.0-3_amd64.deb) ...
Selecting previously unselected package telnet.
Unpacking telnet (from .../telnet_0.17-36build2_amd64.deb) ...
Selecting previously unselected package wget.
Unpacking wget (from .../wget_1.13.4-3ubuntu1_amd64.deb) ...
Selecting previously unselected package redis-server.
Unpacking redis-server (from .../redis-server_2%3a2.4.15-1_amd64.deb) ...
Processing triggers for ureadahead ...
Setting up libidn11:amd64 (1.25-2) ...
Setting up libjemalloc1 (3.0.0-3) ...
Setting up telnet (0.17-36build2) ...
update-alternatives: using /usr/bin/telnet.netkit to provide /usr/bin/telnet (telnet) in auto mode
Setting up wget (1.13.4-3ubuntu1) ...
Setting up redis-server (2:2.4.15-1) ...
Starting redis-server: redis-server.
Processing triggers for libc-bin ...
ldconfig deferred processing now taking place
Processing triggers for ureadahead ...

A quick double check to make sure that our redis-server is now installed:

root@b9859484e68f:/# which redis-server

root@b9859484e68f:/# redis-server --version
Redis server version 2.4.15 (00000000:0)

The image that we’ve created is clean and I want to keep this image before I go much further, so now I’m going to open up another terminal and get back to our vagrant image. Here we can commit and store the filesystem state.

$ docker login
Username (): johncosta
Email ():
Login Succeeded

$ docker commit b9859484e68f johncosta/redis

$ docker push johncosta/redis
Pushing repository johncosta/redis (1 tags)
Pushing tag johncosta/redis:latest
Pushing 3e7b84670ea1c7d4b5df8095a3f2051ac2fb4e34fed101d553ad919c4bd923e4 metadata
Pushing 3e7b84670ea1c7d4b5df8095a3f2051ac2fb4e34fed101d553ad919c4bd923e4 fs layer
21975040/21975040 (100%)
Pushing b750fe79269d2ec9a3c593ef05b4332b1d1a02a62b4accb2c21d589ff2f5f2dc metadata
Pushing 27cf784147099545 metadata
Registering tag johncosta/redis:latest


I forgot to capture the commit command when grabbing the terminal output. Not to worry! I was able ssh into my vagrant VM and check the dockerd logs using: vagrant@vagrant-ubuntu-12:/opt/go/src/$ less /var/log/dockerd

Let’s check what we’ve done and exit out of our container:

root@b9859484e68f:/# exit

It looks like our docker container isn’t running anymore!

$ docker ps

Lets start up a new container, but this time use the image we just created and committed to providing my redis instance as the image to use.

docker run -i -t johncosta/redis /bin/bash

vagrant@vagrant-ubuntu-12:/opt/go/src/$ docker run -i -t johncosta/redis /bin/bash

root@61507c28cd67:/# /etc/init.d/redis-server start
Starting redis-server: redis-server.
root@61507c28cd67:/# ps faux
root         1  0.0  0.5  18068  2016 ?        S    15:58   0:00 /bin/bash
redis       14  0.0  0.4  36624  1656 ?        Ssl  16:01   0:00 /usr/bin/redis-
root        17  0.0  0.3  15524  1108 ?        R    16:01   0:00 ps faux

Let’s make sure we can connect to it and interact with redis (remember we installed telnet!).

root@61507c28cd67:/# telnet 6379
Connected to
Escape character is '^]'.
+1365177842.076283 "MONITOR"
+1365177870.147208 "set" "docker" "awesome"
+1365177874.927280 "get" "docker"
Connection closed by foreign host.

Ok, we know we can connect to redis and interact with it. But we’re inside the container, lets see how to connect to it from outside the container! First, lets inspect our container:

$ docker inspect 61507c28cd67
   "Id": "61507c28cd673ea4464248a8c2b936807bf951d6dc82d0f872b02586c5681139",
   "Created": "2013-04-05T08:58:33.711054-07:00",
   "Path": "/bin/bash",
   "Args": [],
   "Config": {
       "Hostname": "61507c28cd67",
       "User": "",
       "Memory": 0,
       "MemorySwap": 0,
       "AttachStdin": true,
       "AttachStdout": true,
       "AttachStderr": true,
       "Ports": null,
       "Tty": true,
       "OpenStdin": true,
       "StdinOnce": true,
       "Env": null,
       "Cmd": [
       "Image": "johncosta/redis"
   "State": {
       "Running": true,
       "Pid": 6052,
       "ExitCode": 0,
       "StartedAt": "2013-04-05T09:09:19.733633-07:00"
   "Image": "3e7b84670ea1c7d4b5df8095a3f2051ac2fb4e34fed101d553ad919c4bd923e4",
   "NetworkSettings": {
       "IpAddress": "",
       "IpPrefixLen": 24,
       "Gateway": "",
       "PortMapping": {}
   "SysInitPath": "/opt/go/bin/docker"

Hmm, It looks like we don’t have a port that we can connect to. Looking at the run command, there’s something that we missed, the -p option, map a network port to the container. Let’s try this with the following:

docker run -p 6379 -i -t johncosta/redis /usr/bin/redis-server

Much better, we can now see that we’ve allocated ports 6379 and mapped it to the external port 49153.

vagrant@vagrant-ubuntu-12:/opt/go/src/$ docker ps
ID             IMAGE                    COMMAND      CREATED         STATUS         COMMENT
0be92ce8581e   johncosta/redis:latest   /bin/bash    3 minutes ago   Up 3 minutes
vagrant@vagrant-ubuntu-12:/opt/go/src/$ $ docker port 0be92ce8581e 6379

Note: We don’t need to inspect the container and parse the entire container information set to get the mapped port. We can use the convenience command docker port.

OK! We’re almost there. Now terminate that docker process and start with a new command to start our redis server within docker in daemon mode. Test the results with a telnet session and a redis-cli session external to the docker container.

docker run -d -p 6379 -i -t johncosta/redis /usr/bin/redis-server

vagrant@vagrant-ubuntu-12:/opt/go/src/$ docker ps
ID             IMAGE                    COMMAND                CREATED         STATUS         COMMENT
c0f7e48cafcf   johncosta/redis:latest   /usr/bin/redis-serve   4 minutes ago   Up 4 minutes
vagrant@vagrant-ubuntu-12:/opt/go/src/$ docker port c0f7e48cafcf 6379

vagrant@vagrant-ubuntu-12:/opt/go/src/$ telnet 49174
Connected to
Escape character is '^]'.
+1365194060.897490 "monitor"
set docker awesome
+1365194071.640199 "set" "docker" "awesome"
get docker
+1365194073.519484 "get" "docker"
Connection closed by foreign host.

vagrant@vagrant-ubuntu-12:/opt/go/src/$ redis-cli -h -p 49174
redis> get docker

Update 5/6/2013:

It’s now possible to save images with their configuration options! I added one additional commit to do this:

docker commit -run '{"Cmd": ["/usr/bin/redis-server"], "PortSpecs": [":6379"]}' b9859484e68f johncosta/redis

Now to run an image it’s as easy as:

Get the image: docker pull johncosta/redis

Run the image: docker run johncosta/redis

Run in daemon mode: docker run -d johncosta/redis

Also, Check out the docker index.

la fin

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