Overview of docker-compose CLI

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This page provides the usage information for the docker-compose Command. You can also see this information by running docker-compose --help from the command line.

Define and run multi-container applications with Docker.

  docker-compose [-f=<arg>...] [options] [COMMAND] [ARGS...]
  docker-compose -h|--help

  -f, --file FILE             Specify an alternate compose file (default: docker-compose.yml)
  -p, --project-name NAME     Specify an alternate project name (default: directory name)
  --verbose                   Show more output
  -v, --version               Print version and exit
  -H, --host HOST             Daemon socket to connect to

  --tls                       Use TLS; implied by --tlsverify
  --tlscacert CA_PATH         Trust certs signed only by this CA
  --tlscert CLIENT_CERT_PATH  Path to TLS certificate file
  --tlskey TLS_KEY_PATH       Path to TLS key file
  --tlsverify                 Use TLS and verify the remote
  --skip-hostname-check       Don't check the daemon's hostname against the name specified
                              in the client certificate (for example if your docker host
                              is an IP address)

  build              Build or rebuild services
  config             Validate and view the compose file
  create             Create services
  down               Stop and remove containers, networks, images, and volumes
  events             Receive real time events from containers
  help               Get help on a command
  kill               Kill containers
  logs               View output from containers
  pause              Pause services
  port               Print the public port for a port binding
  ps                 List containers
  pull               Pulls service images
  restart            Restart services
  rm                 Remove stopped containers
  run                Run a one-off command
  scale              Set number of containers for a service
  start              Start services
  stop               Stop services
  unpause            Unpause services
  up                 Create and start containers
  version            Show the Docker-Compose version information

The Docker Compose binary. You use this command to build and manage multiple services in Docker containers.

Use the -f flag to specify the location of a Compose configuration file. You can supply multiple -f configuration files. When you supply multiple files, Compose combines them into a single configuration. Compose builds the configuration in the order you supply the files. Subsequent files override and add to their successors.

For example, consider this command line:

$ docker-compose -f docker-compose.yml -f docker-compose.admin.yml run backup_db

The docker-compose.yml file might specify a webapp service.

  image: examples/web
    - "8000:8000"
    - "/data"

If the docker-compose.admin.yml also specifies this same service, any matching fields will override the previous file. New values, add to the webapp service configuration.

  build: .
    - DEBUG=1

Use a -f with - (dash) as the filename to read the configuration from stdin. When stdin is used all paths in the configuration are relative to the current working directory.

The -f flag is optional. If you don’t provide this flag on the command line, Compose traverses the working directory and its parent directories looking for a docker-compose.yml and a docker-compose.override.yml file. You must supply at least the docker-compose.yml file. If both files are present on the same directory level, Compose combines the two files into a single configuration. The configuration in the docker-compose.override.yml file is applied over and in addition to the values in the docker-compose.yml file.

See also the COMPOSE_FILE environment variable.

Each configuration has a project name. If you supply a -p flag, you can specify a project name. If you don’t specify the flag, Compose uses the current directory name. See also the COMPOSE_PROJECT_NAME environment variable

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