Pulse Mastering Docker AWS Azure GCP Basic Setup Space Best Nouman Shabbir

Docker: Basic Setup on AWS, Azure, GCP for Ubuntu Linux

Setting up Docker on a cloud-based instance such as those offered by AWS, Azure, or GCP running Ubuntu Linux is the first step. You can install Docker using the following commands:

sudo apt-get update

sudo apt-get install docker-ce docker-ce-cli

After running these commands, you can verify the installation by checking Docker's status:

sudo systemctl status docker


While this may seem straightforward, there are two crucial points to keep in mind post-installation.

Point 1: It is not uncommon for user privileges associated with Docker to require a system restart to take effect. Therefore, after installing Docker and setting up the user privileges, consider performing a system restart to ensure all changes are properly applied.

Point 2: For those operating in a cloud environment, IP management is vital. Ensure your instance maintains its public IP address even across restarts by assigning a persistent IP. In the context of AWS, this would mean assigning an Elastic IP to your instance. For those using Google Cloud Platform or Azure, the equivalent would be reserving a static IP address.


Docker Space Consumption: Issues and Solutions

While Docker is remarkably efficient, it can consume significant disk space over time. This is because Docker stores images, containers, and volumes. Understanding how to manage these resources is key to maintaining a healthy system. Here's what you should know

Docker Images

Issue: Each time you pull a Docker image, it's stored on your host machine. This can quickly consume your disk space.

Solution: Regularly clean up unused Docker images. You can remove individual images using the docker rmi command or remove all unused images with docker image prune -a.

Docker Containers

Issue: Docker keeps containers on your host, even after they have exited. Over time, these can take up a lot of disk space.

Solution: You can remove individual containers using the docker rm command. If you want to remove all unused containers, networks, and dangling images in one go, use the docker system prune command.

Docker Volumes

Issue: Docker volumes hold data generated by and used by Docker containers. These can accumulate large amounts of unused data over time.

Solution: You can remove unused volumes with the docker volume prune command. Be careful with this command, as it can permanently delete any data that's not backed up elsewhere.

Automating Cleanup Using Cron

To keep Docker's disk usage under control, it can be helpful to automate the cleanup process. You can use Cron, a time-based job scheduler in Unix-like operating systems, to schedule cleanup tasks. Here's an example of a shell script that you can run regularly:


# Remove exited containers

docker container prune -f

# Remove unused images (dangling and all unused)

docker image prune -af

# Remove unused networks

docker network prune -f

# CAUTION: Removing volumes can delete data permanently

all unused volumes

#docker volume prune -f

# Display docker disk usage

docker system df

# List running containers and images

docker ps -a

docker images

This script removes exited containers, unused images, and unused networks. It can also remove volumes, but this is commented out by default because it can permanently delete data. The script also displays Docker's disk usage and lists all running containers and images.

Docker Best Practices

Making the most of Docker involves following some key best practices. Here are some important ones to keep in mind:

  1. Use .dockerignore files: Like a .gitignore file, a .dockerignore file excludes unnecessary files and directories from the Docker build process. This can make your build faster and more efficient.
  2. Minimize the number of layers Docker images are made up of layers, and each instruction in a Dockerfile creates a new layer. Try to minimize the number of layers by combining instructions in your Dockerfile.
  3. Use official Docker images: Whenever possible, use Docker's official images as a base for your Dockerfile. These images are well-maintained, secure, and optimized for general use.
  4. Tag your Docker images: Keep your Docker images organized by using tags. This is particularly useful when you have different versions of the same image.

Understanding Docker's setup, managing its disk space consumption, and using best practices can help you get the most out of Docker on cloud platforms like AWS, Azure, and GCP. As always, feel free to share your experiences and thoughts in the comments below.

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