DockerFile: WordPress

Let’s take a look at Docker‘izing WordPress.


The Docker pull command is:

docker pull wordpress

pull: pulls an image or a repository from a registry. It doesn’t run it. It just means you have the image locally.


You can actually run the image using:

docker run --name some-wordpress --link some-mysql:mysql -d wordpress

some-wordpress is going to be the name of the container.

--link is a bit old school. It connects one container to another. i.e. MySQL to WordPress. Nowadays we use user-defined networks – e.g. overlays.

WordPress Docker Repo:


However, before you can run it you’ll need MySQL. So:

docker pull mysql:5.7.24

(Aside: why not use mysql or mysql:latest? ‘cos MySQL 8 changed the password authentication method. See below.)

and then run it with:

docker run --name test-mysql -e MYSQL_ROOT_PASSWORD=test -d mysql:5.7.24

--name is the name you’re giving to the container,

MYSQL_ROOT_PASSWORDis an environment variable that you set which is read in the container. Note: with MySQL this is done programmatically via – . For more on ARG, Environment variables:

and -d means detach.

To specify a tagged version just add it after the image using a colon. E.g. mysql:5.7.24.


Once you’ve run it you can test it by exec‘ing in with

docker exec -it test-mysql bash

and running:

mysql -u root -p test

or check logs with:

docker logs test-mysql


2018-12-03T14:24:57.091306Z 0 [Note] mysqld: ready for connections.
Version: '5.7.24' socket: '/var/run/mysqld/mysqld.sock' port: 3306 MySQL Community Server (GPL)


Or even mysql in via another MySQL container using:

docker run -it --link test-mysql:mysql --rm mysql sh -c 'exec mysql -h"$MYSQL_PORT_3306_TCP_ADDR" -P"$MYSQL_PORT_3306_TCP_PORT" -uroot -p"$MYSQL_ENV_MYSQL_ROOT_PASSWORD"'


So, getting back to WordPress let’s run it now with:

docker run --name test-wordpress --link test-mysql:mysql -d wordpress

and check the logs with:

You should then be able to access your WordPress site on http://localhost:8080



Conflict. The container name “/test-wordpress” is already in use by container

You run

docker run --name test-wordpress --link test-mysql:mysql -d wordpress

and get:

docker: Error response from daemon: Conflict. The container name "/test-wordpress" is already in use by container "0ea70abdaf306d896eb71f3ab585961359f27af23a243b81370bf407d3dd846d". You have to remove (or rename) that container to be able to reuse that name.

You’ve already got a container with that name.

Remove it with: docker rm test-wordpress

This might happen if the container exited and you try and relaunch it.


Site can’t be reached

You plug http://localhost:8080 into the web browser but get:

Checking the WordPress logs with docker logs test-wordpress I can see:

however this is a secondary problem. Why are we getting this?

‘cos MySQL 8 introduced a different type of authentication –

If you are getting this then you need to use: docker pull mysql:5.7.24 or use a different auth method.


Back to the problem at hand – we should still be able to see a (non-functioning) WordPress site on that port. i.e. Apache should be running.

Let’s just do a sanity check:

This>80/tcp means the docker host port 8080 is mapped to the container port 80.

so http://localhost:8080 is correct.


It seems the problem really was the lack of MySQL. Using 5.7.24 and looking at the WordPress logs showed (for a successful installation):


Installing MySQL and WordPress in under a minute:






Containerizing an App – the Dockerfile

Containerizing an App


  • CAPITALIZE instructions
  • <INSTRUCTION> <value>
  • FROM always first instruction
  • FROM = base image
  • Good practice to list maintainer
  • RUN = execute command and create new layer
  • COPY = copy code into image as new layer
  • Some instructions add metadata instead of layers



FROM <base image>

LABEL maintainer=”<>”

RUN apk –update nodejs nodejs-npm

COPY . /src


RUN npm install


ENTRYPOINT [“node”, “./app.js”]

Build with:

docker image build -t mywebapp .

or docker build

docker container run -d --name web1 -p 8080:8080 mywebapp

d=> detached

-p host port:container port


Under the hood

Dockerfile just some text instructions for building images.

FROM => creates a layer

LABEL => create metadata

RUN => exec commands

COPY => copy stuff in and create a new layer

WORKDIR => working directory


Build context => location of your code.

Subfolders gets included too.


Note: the docker client can be on a separate machine from the docker daemon. The context just gets sent. Also, the context could also be a git repo. E.g.

docker image build -t mywebapp https://<github-url>

Multi-stage Builds

Stage 0:

FROM node:latest AS storefront

Stage 1:

FROM maven:latest AS appserver

Stage 2:

FROM java:8-jdk-alpine AS production

COPY --from=storefront /usr/src/atsea/app/react-app/build/ .

This last instruction is key. It pulls out the layer with the build code we need from that image.

E.g. if we build with:

docker image build -t multistage .

we get:

Here you can see how the multistageimage is a fraction of its build stage images.