Getting Going With Docker

UPDATE: Looks like this post is moot as of today 3/24/2016 due to Docker for Mac and Docker for Windows betas coming out

While interviewing for a new gig I was asked to use memcached and they had suggested standing up a docker instance. I have been using docker pretty regularly now after learning much from my previous co-workers and practical usage.

So, on OSX you can install the docker-machine and docker brew formulas with homebrew. (If you are not using homebrew and cask to manage your installations on OSX you are missing out). I use VirtualBox as my VM hosting tool.

If you haven’t installed (tapped) cask for application (non-CLI, GUI apps) installations, you should do it now:

brew tap caskroom/cask

Now install the items:

brew cask install virtualbox
brew install docker-machine docker

On Linux you don’t need docker-machine as you can just use docker directly, but on OSX you need the set up a Linux host through a VM tool like Virtualbox. You need to setup your docker-machine with the following command:

docker-machine create --driver virtualbox default

This creates the docker host on virtualbox and names it default. So when you run docker-machine ls you will see something like the following:

› docker-machine ls
NAME      ACTIVE   DRIVER       STATE     URL                         SWARM   DOCKER    ERRORS
default   *        virtualbox   Running   tcp://           v1.10.3

I created a Dockerfile to create the docker image with the following content:

FROM ubuntu:latest
MAINTAINER Jason Meridth <>

RUN apt-get update && \
    apt-get install -y memcached && \
    apt-get clean

EXPOSE 11211

CMD ["-u", "root", "-m", "1000"]
USER daemon
ENTRYPOINT memcached

This Dockerfile will do the following:

  • create a new image based on the latest Ubuntu docker image on DockerHub.
  • set the maintainer to myself
  • update the instance
  • install memcached
  • cleanup the update/install
  • expose port 11211 from the instance
  • run the arguments against the entry point (memcached)
  • set user to daemon
  • set entry point to be memcached

After the docker host is create I then built the image with the following command:

docker build -t memcached_img .

-t lets you set a tag on the image so you can use that instead of the unique ID when creating the instance.

To see the new image you run the following:

docker images

and you’ll see something like:

› docker images
REPOSITORY          TAG                 IMAGE ID            CREATED             SIZE
memcached_img       latest              ad3d86685ca8        57 minutes ago      211.4 MB
ubuntu              latest              97434d46f197        4 days ago          188 MB

Note: To delete the image you would use the docker rmi memcached_img command.

I then created the docker instace based on the new docker image with the following command:

docker run -name memcached_ins -d -p 45001:11211 memcached_img

You should receive the sha of your new container instance. To see the instance information run docker ps. The result is

› docker ps
CONTAINER ID        IMAGE               COMMAND                  CREATED             STATUS              PORTS                      NAMES
18c82cd27a2d        memcached_img       "/bin/sh -c memcached"   5 seconds ago       Up 5 seconds>11211/tcp   memcached_ins

As you can see this shows the mapping from the host port of 45001 to the container instance port of 11211 (defaul for memcached).

Note: You may need to add the -a argument to the docker ps command to see all container instances (including the ones not currently running).

Jason Meridth


My name is Jason Meridth. I am a continuously learning senior software developer/devops/team lead/development manager trying to not let best be the enemy of better. I reserve the right to change my mind upon obtaining more information. I am also the owner and principal software consultant at Meridth, LLC. If you have any software, hardward, networking, process, etc needs please don't hesitate to reach out to me.

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