Docker: Installation and basics


This tutorial is aimed to teach one how to install Docker in CentOS 7 base host, and to perform basic tasks.

Container explained

Quick Notes:

  • You cannot run a Windows based container on a Docker that is installed in a Linux OS which used a Linux Kernel.
  • You can run any Linux flavor based container on top of a Docker installed on any flavor of Linux.
  • Docker images are templates that can be used to deploy containers.
  • Multiple containers can be deployed using a same image


  • A new host with CentOS 7 minimal installation, 4GB RAM, 100 GB Hard disk.
  • Ensure host is accessible via putty
  • Disable Selinux and firewall

Update the host’s kernel

[root@docker1 ~]# yum update kernel -y

Create a new yum repository to point docker project repository. The contents should be as follows:

[root@docker1 ~]# cat /etc/yum.repos.d/docker.repo

====== =======
name=Docker Repository

====== =======

Install Docker Engine

[root@docker1 ~]# yum install docker-engine

Start Docker service

[root@docker1 ~]# systemctl start docker.service

Verify the version of Docker release that got installed

[root@docker1 ~]# docker -v
Docker version 17.05.0-ce, build 89658be


Let us try to run an image named  hello-world. If the image is not present in localhost, the application will check in Docker repository and download hello-world container image.

[root@docker1 ~]# docker run hello-world

Similarly, let us download and run a small Ubuntu server, opening it in a console view:

[root@docker1 ~]# docker run -it ubuntu 

The command Ctrl+PQ will allow us to exit from the Ubuntu host’s console. However the server will continue to run
The Ubuntu image will continue to run.

Let us run a container from image ubuntu and list out the directories in it when the container comes up

[root@docker1 ~]# docker run ubuntu ls

[root@docker1 ~]# docker run ubuntu ping

Let us list the containers running on the docker. Take a note of the “NAME” field.

[root@docker1 ~]# docker ps

[root@docker1 ~]# docker ps -aq

Below command will list all containers ever created.

[root@docker1 ~]# docker ps --all

Below command will remove an image named hello-world

[root@docker1 ~]# docker rmi -f  hello-world 

The below command will allow us to get back to the container named “thirsty_ptolemy” if it is shown as running when the above command was executed.

[root@docker1 ~]# docker attach thirsty_ptolemy

Once in the container’s console, the command “exit” will stop the container, and exit out of its shell. Now the command “docker ps” will not display the container named “thirsty_ptolemy”.

root@bb06e23e73e2:/# exit

Lists the images available in the host

[root@docker1 ~]# docker images

Remove the “hello-world” image from the host.

[root@docker1 ~]# docker rmi -f hello-world

************ ***********

The below is an exerciser to create a small image from a set of files, that will be later used to run as container

[root@docker1 ~]# mkdir /sandbox
[root@docker1 ~]# cd /sandbox
[root@docker1 hello-system]# vi index.js

Add the below contents between the lines

===== ====== ====== ===

var http = require(‘http’);

const PORT = 80;

function requestHandler(req, res) {
res.end(`Hello my ${process.platform}`);

var server = http.createServer(requestHandler);

server.listen(PORT, function(){
console.log(`${process.env.NODE_ENV} server listening on port: ${PORT}. CTRL-C to exit.`);

===== ====== ====== ===

[root@docker1 hello-system]# vi package.json

This is copied from :

===== === ========= ======= ======== ======

“name”: “hello-system”,
“version”: “1.0.0”,
“description”: “Greets the current operating system”,
“main”: “index.js”,
“scripts”: {
“start”: “NODE_ENV=production node index.js”,
“test”: “echo \”Error: no test specified\” && exit 1″
“repository”: {
“type”: “git”,
“url”: “”
“author”: “Thomas E Herman Jr”,
“license”: “ISC”

===== === ========= ======= ======== ======

[root@docker1 hello-system]# vi .Dockerfile


FROM node:4-onbuild


Now let us build the image, and look for the confirmation message “Successfully tagged hello-system:latest”
[root@docker1 hello-system]# docker build -t hello-system -f ./.Dockerfile .

Let us run the image
[root@docker1 hello-system]# docker run -it --rm --name shiju-running-app hello-system
This should run the image in its console view with the message at the end “production server listening on port: 80. Press CTRL-C to exit.”

Pressing CTRL+C should bring you back to your host’s shell prompt.

On basis of message displayed in the docker’s console view, you may not be able to check the website using “http://localhost:80”, etc.

You will have to create the container mapping a free port in the base host with the port 80 listened by the container, as shown below:

[root@docker1 /]# docker run -it -p 1337:80 --name myContainer hello-system
Now the website can be accessed using “http://localhost:1337”

Pressing CTRL+C should bring you back to your host’s shell prompt, but the container may be still running though the command “docker ps” wont list this container as running.

[root@docker1 hello-system]# docker ps

[root@docker1 /]# docker run -it -p 1337:80 --name myContainer hello-system
Note: This may give an error stating the container is running.


Below trick will remove the container completely

[root@docker1 /]# docker start myContainer
[root@docker1 /]# docker rm -f myContainer

The docker run command creates a container and starts it. The command to create a container is docker create <image> and the command to run it is docker start <container ID>.

Imagine you have changed the content in the “index.js” file to display a webpage “Hello my system Linux”. This will not come into action just by restarting the container. You will have to build a new docker image from the files, or run the following command, binding the folder holding the content to a place where the app will be located.

[root@docker1]# docker run -it -p 1338:80 -v /root/hello-system/.:/usr/src/app --name myContainer hello-system

Check the site accessing the base host via port 1338


List all containers hosted in the system, weather running or not:

[root@docker1 docker]# docker container ls -all


Remove a container named myContainer2

[root@docker1 docker]# docker rm -f myContainer2