Logs and troubleshooting

Estimated reading time: 12 minutes

This page contains information on how to diagnose and troubleshoot Docker Desktop issues, send logs and communicate with the Docker Desktop team, use our forums and Success Center, browse and log issues on GitHub, and find workarounds for known problems.


Choose whale menu > Troubleshoot from the menu bar to see the troubleshoot options.

Uninstall or reset Docker

The Troubleshoot page contains the following options:

  • Restart Docker Desktop: Select to restart Docker Desktop.

  • Run Diagnostics: Select this option to diagnose any issues on Docker Desktop. For detailed information about diagnostics, see Diagnose problems, send feedback, and create GitHub issues.

  • Reset Kubernetes cluster: Select this option to delete all stacks and Kubernetes resources. For more information, see Kubernetes.

  • Reset disk image: This option resets all Docker data without a reset to factory defaults. Selecting this option results in the loss of existing settings.

  • Reset to factory defaults: Choose this option to reset all options on Docker Desktop to their initial state, the same as when Docker Desktop was first installed.

  • Uninstall: Choose this option to remove Docker Desktop from your system.

Uninstall Docker Desktop from the command line

To uninstall Docker Desktop from a terminal, run: <DockerforMacPath> --uninstall. If your instance is installed in the default location, this command provides a clean uninstall:

$ /Applications/Docker.app/Contents/MacOS/Docker --uninstall
Docker is running, exiting...
Docker uninstalled successfully. You can move the Docker application to the trash.

You might want to use the command-line uninstall if, for example, you find that the app is non-functional, and you cannot uninstall it from the menu.

Diagnose problems, send feedback, and create GitHub issues

In-app diagnostics

If you encounter problems for which you do not find solutions in this documentation, on Docker Desktop issues on GitHub, or the Docker Desktop forum, we can help you troubleshoot the log data.

Choose whale menu > Troubleshoot > Run Diagnostics.

Diagnose & Feedback

Once the diagnostics are available, you can upload them and obtain a Diagnostic ID, which must be provided when communicating with the Docker team. For more information on our policy regarding personal data, see how is personal data handled in Docker Desktop.

Diagnostics & Feedback with ID

If you click Report an issue, this opens Docker Desktop for Mac issues on GitHub in your web browser in a “New issue” template. Add the details before submitting the issue. Do not forget to copy/paste your diagnostic ID.

Diagnosing from the terminal

In some cases, it is useful to run the diagnostics yourself, for instance, if Docker Desktop cannot start.

First, locate the com.docker.diagnose tool. If you have installed Docker Desktop in the Applications directory, then it is located at /Applications/Docker.app/Contents/MacOS/com.docker.diagnose.

To create and upload diagnostics, run:

$ /Applications/Docker.app/Contents/MacOS/com.docker.diagnose gather -upload

After the diagnostics have finished, you should have the following output, containing your diagnostics ID:

Diagnostics Bundle: /tmp/B8CF8400-47B3-4068-ADA4-3BBDCE3985D9/20190726143610.zip
Diagnostics ID:     B8CF8400-47B3-4068-ADA4-3BBDCE3985D9/20190726143610 (uploaded)
Diagnostics Bundle: /tmp/BE9AFAAF-F68B-41D0-9D12-84760E6B8740/20190905152051.zip
Diagnostics ID:     BE9AFAAF-F68B-41D0-9D12-84760E6B8740/20190905152051 (uploaded)

The diagnostics ID (here BE9AFAAF-F68B-41D0-9D12-84760E6B8740/20190905152051) is composed of your user ID (BE9AFAAF-F68B-41D0-9D12-84760E6B8740) and a timestamp (20190905152051). Ensure you provide the full diagnostics ID, and not just the user ID.

To view the contents of the diagnostic file, run:

$ open /tmp/BE9AFAAF-F68B-41D0-9D12-84760E6B8740/20190905152051.zip

Check the logs

In addition to using the diagnose and feedback option to submit logs, you can browse the logs yourself. The following documentation is about macOS 10.12 onwards; for older versions, see older documentation.

In a terminal

To watch the live flow of Docker Desktop logs in the command line, run the following script from your favorite shell.

$ pred='process matches ".*(ocker|vpnkit).*"
  || (process in {"taskgated-helper", "launchservicesd", "kernel"} && eventMessage contains[c] "docker")'
$ /usr/bin/log stream --style syslog --level=debug --color=always --predicate "$pred"

Alternatively, to collect the last day of logs (1d) in a file, run:

$ /usr/bin/log show --debug --info --style syslog --last 1d --predicate "$pred" >/tmp/logs.txt

In the Console app

Macs provide a built-in log viewer, named “Console”, which you can use to check Docker logs.

The Console lives in /Applications/Utilities; you can search for it with Spotlight Search.

To read the Docker app log messages, type docker in the Console window search bar and press Enter. Then select ANY to expand the drop-down list next to your docker search entry, and select Process.

Mac Console search for Docker app

You can use the Console Log Query to search logs, filter the results in various ways, and create reports.


Make sure certificates are set up correctly

Docker Desktop ignores certificates listed under insecure registries, and does not send client certificates to them. Commands like docker run that attempt to pull from the registry produces error messages on the command line, for example:

Error response from daemon: Get malformed HTTP response "\x15\x03\x01\x00\x02\x02"

As well as on the registry. For example:

2019/06/20 18:15:30 http: TLS handshake error from tls: client didn't provide a certificate
2019/06/20 18:15:30 http: TLS handshake error from tls: first record does not look like a TLS handshake

For more about using client and server side certificates, see Adding TLS certificates in the Getting Started topic.

Docker Desktop does not start if Mac user account and home folder are renamed after installing the app

See Do I need to reinstall Docker Desktop if I change the name of my macOS account? in the FAQs.

Volume mounting requires file sharing for any project directories outside of /Users

If you are using mounted volumes and get runtime errors indicating an application file is not found, access to a volume mount is denied, or a service cannot start, such as when using Docker Compose, you might need to enable file sharing.

Volume mounting requires shared drives for projects that live outside of the /Users directory. Go to whale menu > Preferences > Resources > File sharing and share the drive that contains the Dockerfile and volume.

Incompatible CPU detected

Docker Desktop requires a processor (CPU) that supports virtualization and, more specifically, the Apple Hypervisor framework. Docker Desktop is only compatible with Mac systems that have a CPU that supports the Hypervisor framework. Most Macs built in 2010 and later support it,as described in the Apple Hypervisor Framework documentation about supported hardware:

Generally, machines with an Intel VT-x feature set that includes Extended Page Tables (EPT) and Unrestricted Mode are supported.

To check if your Mac supports the Hypervisor framework, run the following command in a terminal window.

sysctl kern.hv_support

If your Mac supports the Hypervisor Framework, the command prints kern.hv_support: 1.

If not, the command prints kern.hv_support: 0.

See also, Hypervisor Framework Reference in the Apple documentation, and Docker Desktop Mac system requirements.

Workarounds for common problems

  • If Docker Desktop fails to install or start properly on Mac:

    • Make sure you quit Docker Desktop before installing a new version of the application (whale menu > Quit Docker Desktop). Otherwise, you get an “application in use” error when you try to copy the new app from the .dmg to /Applications.

    • Restart your Mac to stop / discard any vestige of the daemon running from the previously installed version.

    • Run the uninstall commands from the menu.

  • If docker commands aren’t working properly or as expected, you may need to unset some environment variables, to make sure you are not using the legacy Docker Machine environment in your shell or command window. Unset the DOCKER_HOST environment variable and related variables. If you use bash, use the following command: unset ${!DOCKER_*}

  • Network connections fail if the macOS Firewall is set to “Block all incoming connections”. You can enable the firewall, but bootpd must be allowed incoming connections so that the VM can get an IP address.

  • For the hello-world-nginx example, Docker Desktop must be running to get to the web server on http://localhost/. Make sure that the Docker icon is displayed on the menu bar, and that you run the Docker commands in a shell that is connected to the Docker Desktop Engine. Otherwise, you might start the webserver container but get a “web page not available” error when you go to localhost.

  • If you see errors like Bind for failed: port is already allocated or listen tcp: bind: address is already in use:

    • These errors are often caused by some other software on the Mac using those ports.

    • Run lsof -i tcp:8080 to discover the name and pid of the other process and decide whether to shut the other process down, or to use a different port in your docker app.

Known issues

  • IPv6 is not (yet) supported on Docker Desktop.

  • You might encounter errors when using docker-compose up with Docker Desktop (ValueError: Extra Data). We’ve identified this is likely related to data and/or events being passed all at once rather than one by one, so sometimes the data comes back as 2+ objects concatenated and causes an error.

  • Force-ejecting the .dmg after running Docker.app from it can cause the whale icon to become unresponsive, Docker tasks to show as not responding in the Activity Monitor, and for some processes to consume a large amount of CPU resources. Reboot and restart Docker to resolve these issues.

  • Docker does not auto-start on login even when it is enabled in whale menu > Preferences. This is related to a set of issues with Docker helper, registration, and versioning.

  • Docker Desktop uses the HyperKit hypervisor (https://github.com/docker/hyperkit) in macOS 10.10 Yosemite and higher. If you are developing with tools that have conflicts with HyperKit, such as Intel Hardware Accelerated Execution Manager (HAXM), the current workaround is not to run them at the same time. You can pause HyperKit by quitting Docker Desktop temporarily while you work with HAXM. This allows you to continue work with the other tools and prevent HyperKit from interfering.

  • If you are working with applications like Apache Maven that expect settings for DOCKER_HOST and DOCKER_CERT_PATH environment variables, specify these to connect to Docker instances through Unix sockets. For example:

    export DOCKER_HOST=unix:///var/run/docker.sock
  • docker-compose 1.7.1 performs DNS unnecessary lookups for localunixsocket.local which can take 5s to timeout on some networks. If docker-compose commands seem very slow but seem to speed up when the network is disabled, try appending localunixsocket.local to the file /etc/hosts. Alternatively you could create a plain-text TCP proxy on localhost:1234 using:

    docker run -d -v /var/run/docker.sock:/var/run/docker.sock -p bobrik/socat TCP-LISTEN:1234,fork UNIX-CONNECT:/var/run/docker.sock

    and then export DOCKER_HOST=tcp://localhost:1234.

  • There are a number of issues with the performance of directories bind-mounted into containers. In particular, writes of small blocks, and traversals of large directories are currently slow. Additionally, containers that perform large numbers of directory operations, such as repeated scans of large directory trees, may suffer from poor performance. Applications that behave in this way include:

    • rake
    • ember build
    • Symfony
    • Magento
    • Zend Framework
    • PHP applications that use Composer to install dependencies in a vendor folder

    As a work-around for this behavior, you can put vendor or third-party library directories in Docker volumes, perform temporary file system operations outside of bind mounts, and use third-party tools like Unison or rsync to synchronize between container directories and bind-mounted directories. We are actively working on performance improvements using a number of different techniques. To learn more, see the topic on our roadmap.

  • If your system does not have access to an NTP server, then after a hibernate the time seen by Docker Desktop may be considerably out of sync with the host. Furthermore, the time may slowly drift out of sync during use. To manually reset the time after hibernation, run:

    docker run --rm --privileged alpine hwclock -s

    Or, to resolve both issues, you can add the local clock as a low-priority (high stratum) fallback NTP time source for the host. To do this, edit the host’s /etc/ntp-restrict.conf to add:

    server              # LCL, local clock
    fudge stratum 12   # increase stratum

    Then restart the NTP service with:

    sudo launchctl unload /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/org.ntp.ntpd.plist
    sudo launchctl load /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/org.ntp.ntpd.plist
mac, troubleshooting, logs, issues