Container42 Stuff I find interesting

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Experimenting with Native Docker tooling

Using Docker over the last two years has been a wonderful experience. It is not always perfect. I've certainly had to write new tools (and use other's tools) to deal with a missing or not-fully-baked features for my own needs. However, this has served to allow us to focus on the next level of problems in administering systems, be it for local dev envs, production clusters, and everything in between.

Very often when talking to other developers they all agree they like the Docker model, but the path from a simple dev env to a proudction cluster (even a small one) is unclear. Indeed, I tend to agree, there has not been a simple way to set this up without rolling your own tooling (which I've done a lot of).

The Docker community has been working on new tools and API's to help fill in some of those gaps and aleviate some of the headaches with some supporting tooling like compose, swarm, and machine, but still these aren't really production ready yet nor the integration points completely figured out. That is not to say don't use these tools, I use them every day. I don't create a Digital Ocean droplet without doing it through docker-machine, for instance.

Thankfully, this is somthing being worked on! I'd like to show you some of it. It is still QUITE rough around the edges, but I'd expect to see some major improvements soon, possibly even in time for for the Docker Engine 1.9 release (October). Without further ado, let's take a look!

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Docker logging

Logging in Docker has always been quite convenient for a developer. Send your logs to stdout/stderr and Docker picks them up, you can view them with docker logs. This command lets you tail the logs, follow them, etc. It can be really nice. In production scenarios this has proven to be a pain point...

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Data-only container madness

Data-only containers are a pattern for managing your docker volumes with containers instead of manually with host-mounted volumes. For more info on the pattern, see Data-only container pattern

If you are using the busybox, scratch, or <insert minimally sized image here>, you are doing it wrong, and here's why.

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Docker In-depth: Volumes

One of the most common roadblocks for people using Docker, and indeed easily the most common questions I see on on various Docker support channels, is regarding the use of volumes.

So let's take a closer look at how volumes work in Docker.

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Docker Quicktip #6: Restart Policies

Docker 1.2 introduced a powerful new feature called "restart policies". Restart policies replaces the old daemon "-r" option, which itself would try to restart all previously running containers upon daemon restart, however this was rife with trouble.

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