What is Docker?

Docker is a platform that uses containers to create, manage and use applications.

And what is a container? It can be considered as a package of an application, containing all the necessary dependencies and libraries needed to run the application and can be shipped as one package since they are isolated. This process is called containerization. Docker makes it possible to deploy containers in one or a cluster of Linux machines, where the containers shares resources with the host computer, unlike a virtual machine that get dedicated resources from the host. Containers are therefore preferred to virtual machines since they are light-weight and easy to deploy.

Where is docker useful?

Developers and system administrator mostly use containers to enable them isolate code and applications. It makes it easier for them to make changes to a program. Many containers can run on a single Linux computer reducing the number of systems needed and lowering overhead.

How then can I install Docker CE in Linux Mint 20?

Docker is presented as a Community Edition (CE) and Enterprise Edition (EE). This guide gives a step-by-step guide on how to install ad use docker CE in Linux Mint 20.

Update your system

First ensure that your system packages are updated

sudo apt-get update

Install Docker dependencies and add Docker official key

APT does not use HTTPS and it is crucial to install the packages and dependencies that will enable it to use a repository through https

sudo apt-get install apt-transport-https ca-certificates curl gnupg-agent software-properties-common

Next add Docker official key which is important in enabling Docker repo.

curl -fsSL https://download.docker.com/linux/ubuntu/gpg | sudo apt-key add -

Adding Docker repository

Next thing is to add Docker repository to Linux Mint. The variable ‘$ (. /etc/os-release; echo “$ubuntu-codename”)’ ensures that you are using the right distribution of your Linux Mint

sudo add-apt-repository "deb [arch=amd64] https://download.docker.com/linux/ubuntu $(. /etc/os-release; echo "$UBUNTU_CODENAME") stable"

Update your system again

sudo apt-get update

Install Docker CE on Linux Mint 20

Run the below command to install the latest version of Docker CE

sudo apt-get -y install docker-ce

Once installed a docker group will be created. Add your user to the group who will be running docker commands.

sudo usermod -aG docker $USER

Verify Docker Installation

Show docker version

sudo docker --version

The output should show docker version and build

Some Docker commands

Docker is used with syntax as shown below:

$ docker [options] [command] [arguments]

To check options to be used with docker, run:

$ docker

or

$ docker help

Output

What is Docker hub

Docker hub is a registry of docker images that can easily be pulled to run containers. An image is like a container snapshot, which when started creates a container. An image is downloaded from the hub with ‘pull’ command and run with ‘run’ command.

Example: How to run nginx with docker

Use the ‘pull’ command to get nginx image from docker hub

sudo docker pull nginx

The output should be as shown below:

You can check the existing images by running the command below:

sudo docker images

The images will be listed as shown

To run nginx we need to expose the container port to network port, in this case port 80

sudo docker run --name docker-nginx -p 80:80 nginx

Output

To verify that nginx is running, open your browser and enter http://localhost. The output should be nginx welcome page

You can check all the running containers by issuing the command below. Adding -a at the end of the command displays all running containers

sudo docker ps
sudo docker ps -a

output

To stop a container, take the container ID from the command above and use it to stop as below:

sudo docker stop <container-ID>

This has been an informative step-by-step guide on how to install and use docker CE in Linux Mint 20. I hope it has been useful to you.

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