Docker Official Images

The Docker Official Images are a curated set of Docker repositories hosted on Docker Hub.

These images provide essential base repositories that serve as the starting point for the majority of users.

These include operating systems such as Ubuntu and Alpine, programming languages such as Python and Node, and other essential tools such as Redis and MySQL.

The images are some of the most secure images on Docker Hub. This is particularly important as Docker Official Images are some of the most popular on Docker Hub. Typically, Docker Official images have few or no vulnerabilities.

The images exemplify Dockerfile best practices and provide clear documentation to serve as a reference for other Dockerfile authors.

Images that are part of this program have a special badge on Docker Hub making it easier for you to identify projects that are official Docker images.

Docker official image badge

When to use Docker Official Images

If you are new to Docker, it's recommended you use the Docker Official Images in your projects. These images have clear documentation, promote best practices, and are designed for the most common use cases. Advanced users can review Docker Official Images as part of your Dockerfile learning process.

A common rationale for diverging from Docker Official Images is to optimize for image size. For instance, many of the programming language stack images contain a complete build toolchain to support installation of modules that depend on optimized code. An advanced user could build a custom image with just the necessary pre-compiled libraries to save space.

A number of language stacks such as Python and Ruby have -slim tag variants designed to fill the need for optimization. Even when these "slim" variants are insufficient, it's still recommended to inherit from an Official Image base OS image to leverage the ongoing maintenance work, rather than duplicating these efforts.

Submitting feedback for Docker Official Images

All Docker Official Images contain a User Feedback section in their documentation which covers the details for that specific repository. In most cases, the GitHub repository which contains the Dockerfiles for an Official Repository also has an active issue tracker. General feedback and support questions should be directed to #docker-library on Libera.Chat IRC.

For content publishers

Docker, Inc. sponsors a dedicated team that's responsible for reviewing and publishing all content in Docker Official Images. This team works in collaboration with upstream software maintainers, security experts, and the broader Docker community.

While it's preferable to have upstream software authors maintaining their Docker Official Images, this isn't a strict requirement. Creating and maintaining images for Docker Official Images is a collaborative process. It takes place openly on GitHub where participation is encouraged. Anyone can provide feedback, contribute code, suggest process changes, or even propose a new Official Image.


Docker Official Images are an intellectual property of Docker.

Creating a Docker Official Image

From a high level, an Official Image starts out as a proposal in the form of a set of GitHub pull requests. The following GitHub repositories detail the proposal requirements:

The Docker Official Images team, with help from community contributors, formally review each proposal and provide feedback to the author. This initial review process may require a bit of back-and-forth before the proposal is accepted.

There are subjective considerations during the review process. These subjective concerns boil down to the basic question: "is this image generally useful?" For example, the Python Docker Official Image is "generally useful" to the larger Python developer community, whereas an obscure text adventure game written in Python last week is not.

Once a new proposal is accepted, the author is responsible for keeping their images up-to-date and responding to user feedback. The Official Repositories team becomes responsible for publishing the images and documentation on Docker Hub. Updates to the Docker Official Image follow the same pull request process, though with less review. The Docker Official Images team ultimately acts as a gatekeeper for all changes, which helps mitigate the risk of quality and security issues from being introduced.