Get Docker for SLES

Estimated reading time: 8 minutes

To get started with Docker on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES), make sure you meet the prerequisites, then install Docker.

Prerequisites

Docker EE URL

To install Docker Enterprise Edition (Docker EE), you need to know the Docker EE repository URL associated with your trial or subscription. To get this information:

  • Go to https://store.docker.com/?overlay=subscriptions.
  • Choose Get Details / Setup Instructions within the Docker Enterprise Edition for SUSE Linux Enterprise Server section.
  • Copy the URL from the field labeled Copy and paste this URL to download your Edition.

Use this URL when you see the placeholder text <DOCKER-EE-URL>.

To learn more about Docker EE, see Docker Enterprise Edition.

Docker Community Edition (Docker CE) is not supported on SLES.

OS requirements

To install Docker, you need the 64-bit version of SLES 12.x. Docker is not supported on OpenSUSE.

The only supported storage driver for Docker on SLES is btrfs, which will be used by default if the underlying filesystem hosting /var/lib/docker/ is a BTRFS filesystem.

Uninstall old versions

Older versions of Docker were called docker or docker-engine. If these are installed, uninstall them, along with associated dependencies.

$ sudo zypper rm docker docker-engine

If removal of the docker-engine package fails, use the following command instead:

$ sudo rpm -e docker-engine

It’s OK if zypper reports that none of these packages are installed.

The contents of /var/lib/docker/, including images, containers, volumes, and networks, are preserved. The Docker EE package is now called docker-ee.

Configure the btrfs filesystem

If the filesystem which hosts /var/lib/docker/ is not a BTRFS filesystem, you must configure a BTRFS filesystem and mount it on /var/lib/docker/:

  1. Format your dedicated block device or devices as a Btrfs filesystem. This example assumes that you are using two block devices called /dev/xvdf and /dev/xvdg. Double-check the block device names because this is a destructive operation.

    $ sudo mkfs.btrfs -f /dev/xvdf /dev/xvdg
    

    There are many more options for Btrfs, including striping and RAID. See the Btrfs documentation.

  2. Mount the new Btrfs filesystem on the /var/lib/docker/ mount point. You can specify any of the block devices used to create the Btrfs filesystem.

    $ sudo mount -t btrfs /dev/xvdf /var/lib/docker
    

    Don’t forget to make the change permanent across reboots by adding an entry to /etc/fstab.

Install Docker

You can install Docker in different ways, depending on your needs:

  • Most users set up Docker’s repositories and install from them, for ease of installation and upgrade tasks. This is the recommended approach.

  • Some users download the RPM package and install it manually and manage upgrades completely manually. This is useful in situations such as installing Docker on air-gapped systems with no access to the internet.

Install using the repository

Before you install Docker for the first time on a new host machine, you need to set up the Docker repository. Afterward, you can install and update Docker from the repository.

Set up the repository

  1. Use the following command to set up the stable repository, using the Docker EE repository URL you located in the prerequisites.

    $ sudo zypper addrepo \
        <DOCKER-EE-URL>/12.3/x86_64/stable-17.03 \
        docker-ee-stable
    
  2. Import the GPG key from the repository.

    $ sudo rpm --import <DOCKER-EE-URL/gpg
    

Install Docker EE

  1. Update the zypper package index.

    $ sudo zypper refresh
    

    If this is the first time you have refreshed the package index since adding the Docker repositories, you will be prompted to accept the GPG key, and the key’s fingerprint will be shown. Verify that the fingerprint matches 77FE DA13 1A83 1D29 A418 D3E8 99E5 FF2E 7668 2BC9 and if so, accept the key.

  2. Install the latest version of Docker EE, or go to the next step to install a specific version.

    $ sudo zypper install docker-ee
    

    Start Docker:

    $ sudo service docker start
    
  3. On production systems, you should install a specific version of Docker instead of always using the latest. List the available versions. The following example only lists binary packages and is truncated. To also list source packages, omit the -t package flag from the command.

    $ zypper search -s --match-exact -t package docker-ee
    
      Loading repository data...
      Reading installed packages...
    
      S | Name          | Type    | Version                               | Arch   | Repository    
      --+---------------+---------+---------------------------------------+--------+---------------
        | docker-ee     | package | 17.03-1                 | x86_64 | docker-ee-stable
    

    The contents of the list depend upon which repositories you have enabled. Choose a specific version to install. The third column is the version string. The fifth column is the repository name, which indicates which repository the package is from and by extension its stability level. To install a specific version, append the version string to the package name and separate them by a hyphen (-):

    $ sudo zypper install docker-ee-<VERSION_STRING>
    
  4. Configure Docker to use the btrfs filesystem. Edit the file /etc/docker/daemon.json (create it if it does not exist) and add the following contents:

    {
      "storage-driver": "btrfs"
    }
    

    Save and close the file.

  5. Start Docker:

    $ sudo service docker start
    
  6. Verify that Docker EE is installed correctly by running the hello-world image.

    $ sudo docker run hello-world
    

    This command downloads a test image and runs it in a container. When the container runs, it prints an informational message and exits.

Docker EE is installed and running. You need to use sudo to run Docker commands. Continue to Linux postinstall to configure the graph storage driver, allow non-privileged users to run Docker commands, and for other optional configuration steps.

Upgrade Docker EE

To upgrade Docker EE, first run sudo zypper refresh, then follow the installation instructions, choosing the new version you want to install.

Install from a package

If you cannot use the official Docker repository to install Docker, you can download the .rpm file for your release and install it manually. You will need to download a new file each time you want to upgrade Docker.

  1. Go to the Docker EE repository URL associated with your trial or subscription in your browser. Go to 12.3/x86_64/stable-17.03 and download the .rpm file for the Docker version you want to install.

  2. Import Docker’s official GPG key:

    $ sudo rpm --import <DOCKER-EE-URL>/gpg
    
  3. Install Docker EE, changing the path below to the path where you downloaded the Docker package.

    $ sudo zypper install /path/to/package.rpm
    
  4. Configure Docker to use the btrfs filesystem. Edit the file /etc/docker/daemon.json (create it if it does not exist) and add the following contents:

    {
      "storage-driver": "btrfs"
    }
    

    Save and close the file.

  5. Start Docker:

    $ sudo service docker start
    
  6. Verify that Docker EE is installed correctly by running the hello-world image.

    $ sudo docker run hello-world
    

    This command downloads a test image and runs it in a container. When the container runs, it prints an informational message and exits.

Docker EE is installed and running. You need to use sudo to run Docker commands. Continue to Post-installation steps for Linux to allow non-privileged users to run Docker commands and for other optional configuration steps.

Upgrade Docker EE

To upgrade Docker EE, download the newer package file and repeat the installation procedure, using zypper update instead of zypper install, and pointing to the new file.

Uninstall Docker

  1. Uninstall the Docker EE package using the following command.

    $ sudo zypper rm docker-ee
    
  2. Images, containers, volumes, or customized configuration files on your host are not automatically removed. To delete all images, containers, and volumes:

    $ sudo rm -rf /var/lib/docker/*
    

    As an alternative, you can unmount and format the btrfs filesystem.

You must delete any edited configuration files manually.

Next steps

Docker, Docker documentation, requirements, apt, installation, suse, opensuse, sles, rpm, install, uninstall, upgrade, update