Start, Pause, Restart, Stop, and Delete a Docker Container

Updated: November 13, 2021 By: Napoleon Post a comment

This short article lists the most important commands you need to know for managing the lifecycle of a Docker container.

Starting a Docker container

This command is used to start a new container from a single image:

docker run 

For example, the following will run a Node.js container in the foreground, and tell it to run the Bash shell:

docker run -it --name my_example node bash

The purpose of the –name flag is to assign a memorable name to the container.

Another example with port option:

docker container run -d --name web_latest -p 8080:8080  web:latest

Pausing a container

The command below will pause all processes within a container:

docker pause <container-id or container-name>

Restarting a container

You can restart a Docker container by executing the following:

docker restart <container-id or container-name>

Stopping a container

You can stop a running Docker container with this command:

docker stop <container-id or container-name>

Deleting a container

To remove a stopped (exited) container, run:

docker rm <container-id or container-name>

If you want to wipe out all running and stopped containers on your system at once without passing IDs or names, use the following command:

docker container rm $(docker container ls -aq) -f

It’s worth noting that the preceding command is dangerous and you should be very careful when typing it.

Final Words

We’ve walked through the most-used commands for working with Docker containers. If you’d like to explore more interesting stuff about this awesome technology, take a look at the following articles:

You can also check out our Docker topic page for the latest tutorials, examples, tips, and tricks.

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