Install Netdata with Docker

Running the Netdata Agent in a container works best for an internal network or to quickly analyze a host. Docker helps you get set up quickly, and doesn't install anything permanent on the system, which makes uninstalling the Agent easy.

See our full list of Docker images at Docker Hub.

Starting with v1.12, Netdata collects anonymous usage information by default and sends it to Google Analytics. Read about the information collected, and learn how to-opt, on our anonymous statistics page.

The usage statistics are vital for us, as we use them to discover bugs and priortize new features. We thank you for actively contributing to Netdata's future.

Limitations running the Agent in Docker

For monitoring the whole host, running the Agent in a container can limit its capabilities. Some data, like the host OS performance or status, is not accessible or not as detailed in a container as when running the Agent directly on the host.

A way around this is to provide special mounts to the Docker container so that the Agent can get visibility on host OS information like /sys and /proc folders or even /etc/group and shadow files.

Also, we now ship Docker images using an ENTRYPOINT directive, not a COMMAND directive. Please adapt your execution scripts accordingly. You can find more information about ENTRYPOINT vs COMMAND in the Docker documentation.

Create a new Netdata Agent container

You can create a new Agent container using either docker run or Docker Compose. After using either method, you can visit the Agent dashboard http://NODE:19999.

Both methods create a bind mount for Netdata's configuration files within the container at /etc/netdata. See the configuration section for details. If you want to access the configuration files from your host machine, see host-editable configuration.

docker run: Use the docker run command, along with the following options, to start a new container.

docker run -d --name=netdata \
-p 19999:19999 \
-v netdataconfig:/etc/netdata \
-v netdatalib:/var/lib/netdata \
-v netdatacache:/var/cache/netdata \
-v /etc/passwd:/host/etc/passwd:ro \
-v /etc/group:/host/etc/group:ro \
-v /proc:/host/proc:ro \
-v /sys:/host/sys:ro \
-v /etc/os-release:/host/etc/os-release:ro \
--restart unless-stopped \
--cap-add SYS_PTRACE \
--security-opt apparmor=unconfined \
netdata/netdata

Docker Compose: Copy the following code and paste into a new file called docker-compose.yml, then run docker-compose up -d in the same directory as the docker-compose.yml file to start the container.

version: '3'
services:
netdata:
image: netdata/netdata
container_name: netdata
hostname: example.com # set to fqdn of host
ports:
- 19999:19999
restart: unless-stopped
cap_add:
- SYS_PTRACE
security_opt:
- apparmor:unconfined
volumes:
- netdataconfig:/etc/netdata
- netdatalib:/var/lib/netdata
- netdatacache:/var/cache/netdata
- /etc/passwd:/host/etc/passwd:ro
- /etc/group:/host/etc/group:ro
- /proc:/host/proc:ro
- /sys:/host/sys:ro
- /etc/os-release:/host/etc/os-release:ro
volumes:
netdataconfig:
netdatalib:
netdatacache:

Health Checks

Our Docker image provides integrated support for health checks through the standard Docker interfaces.

You can control how the health checks run by using the environment variable NETDATA_HEALTHCHECK_TARGET as follows:

  • If left unset, the health check will attempt to access the /api/v1/info endpoint of the agent.
  • If set to the exact value 'cli', the health check script will use netdatacli ping to determine if the agent is running correctly or not. This is sufficient to ensure that Netdata did not hang during startup, but does not provide a rigorous verification that the daemon is collecting data or is otherwise usable.
  • If set to anything else, the health check will treat the vaule as a URL to check for a 200 status code on. In most cases, this should start with http://localhost:19999/ to check the agent running in the container.

In most cases, the default behavior of checking the /api/v1/info endpoint will be sufficient. If you are using a configuration which disables the web server or restricts access to certain API's, you will need to use a non-default configuration for health checks to work.

Configure Agent containers

If you started an Agent container using one of the recommended methods, you must first use docker exec to attach to the container. Replace netdata with the name of your Agent container in the first command below.

docker exec -it netdata bash
cd /etc/netdata
./edit-config netdata.conf

You need to restart the Agent to apply changes. Exit the container if you haven't already, then use the docker command to restart the container: docker restart netdata.

Host-editable configuration

If you want to make your container's configuration directory accessible from the host system, you need to use a volume rather than a bind mount. The following commands create a temporary netdata_tmp container, which is used to populate a netdataconfig directory, which is then mounted inside the container at /etc/netdata.

mkdir netdataconfig
docker run -d --name netdata_tmp netdata/netdata
docker cp netdata_tmp:/etc/netdata netdataconfig/
docker rm -f netdata_tmp

docker run: Use the docker run command, along with the following options, to start a new container. Note the changed -v $(pwd)/netdataconfig/netdata:/etc/netdata:ro \ line from the recommended example above.

docker run -d --name=netdata \
-p 19999:19999 \
-v $(pwd)/netdataconfig/netdata:/etc/netdata:ro \
-v netdatalib:/var/lib/netdata \
-v netdatacache:/var/cache/netdata \
-v /etc/passwd:/host/etc/passwd:ro \
-v /etc/group:/host/etc/group:ro \
-v /proc:/host/proc:ro \
-v /sys:/host/sys:ro \
-v /etc/os-release:/host/etc/os-release:ro \
--restart unless-stopped \
--cap-add SYS_PTRACE \
--security-opt apparmor=unconfined \
netdata/netdata

Docker Compose: Copy the following code and paste into a new file called docker-compose.yml, then run docker-compose up -d in the same directory as the docker-compose.yml file to start the container. Note the changed ./netdataconfig/netdata:/etc/netdata:ro line from the recommended example above.

version: '3'
services:
netdata:
image: netdata/netdata
container_name: netdata
hostname: example.com # set to fqdn of host
ports:
- 19999:19999
restart: unless-stopped
cap_add:
- SYS_PTRACE
security_opt:
- apparmor:unconfined
volumes:
- ./netdataconfig/netdata:/etc/netdata:ro
- netdatalib:/var/lib/netdata
- netdatacache:/var/cache/netdata
- /etc/passwd:/host/etc/passwd:ro
- /etc/group:/host/etc/group:ro
- /proc:/host/proc:ro
- /sys:/host/sys:ro
- /etc/os-release:/host/etc/os-release:ro
volumes:
netdatalib:
netdatacache:

Add or remove other volumes

Some of the volumes are optional depending on how you use Netdata:

  • If you don't want to use the apps.plugin functionality, you can remove the mounts of /etc/passwd and /etc/group (they are used to get proper user and group names for the monitored host) to get slightly better security.
  • Most modern linux distros supply /etc/os-release although some older distros only supply /etc/lsb-release. If this is the case you can change the line above that mounts the file inside the container to -v /etc/lsb-release:/host/etc/lsb-release:ro.
  • If your host is virtualized then Netdata cannot detect it from inside the container and will output the wrong metadata (e.g. on /api/v1/info queries). You can fix this by setting a variable that overrides the detection using, e.g. --env VIRTUALIZATION=$(systemd-detect-virt -v). If you are using a docker-compose.yml then add:
environment:
- VIRTUALIZATION=${VIRTUALIZATION}

This allows the information to be passed into docker-compose using:

VIRTUALIZATION=$(systemd-detect-virt -v) docker-compose up

Files inside systemd volumes

If a volume is used by systemd service, some files can be removed during reinitialization. To avoid this, you need to add RuntimeDirectoryPreserve=yes to the service file.

Docker container names resolution

There are a few options for resolving container names within Netdata. Some methods of doing so will allow root access to your machine from within the container. Please read the following carefully.

Docker socket proxy (safest option)

Deploy a Docker socket proxy that accepts and filters out requests using something like HAProxy so that it restricts connections to read-only access to the CONTAINERS endpoint.

The reason it's safer to expose the socket to the proxy is because Netdata has a TCP port exposed outside the Docker network. Access to the proxy container is limited to only within the network.

Below is an example repository (and image) that provides a proxy to the socket.

You run the Docker Socket Proxy in its own Docker Compose file and leave it on a private network that you can add to other services that require access.

version: '3'
services:
netdata:
image: netdata/netdata
# ... rest of your config ...
ports:
- 19999:19999
environment:
- DOCKER_HOST=proxy:2375
proxy:
image: tecnativa/docker-socket-proxy
volumes:
- /var/run/docker.sock:/var/run/docker.sock:ro
environment:
- CONTAINERS=1

Note: Replace 2375 with the port of your proxy.

Giving group access to the Docker socket (less safe)

Important Note: You should seriously consider the necessity of activating this option, as it grants to the netdata user access to the privileged socket connection of docker service and therefore your whole machine.

If you want to have your container names resolved by Netdata, make the netdata user be part of the group that owns the socket.

To achieve that just add environment variable PGID=[GROUP NUMBER] to the Netdata container, where [GROUP NUMBER] is practically the group id of the group assigned to the docker socket, on your host.

This group number can be found by running the following (if socket group ownership is docker):

grep docker /etc/group | cut -d ':' -f 3

Running as root (unsafe)

You should seriously consider the necessity of activating this option, as it grants to the netdata user access to the privileged socket connection of docker service, and therefore your whole machine.

version: '3'
services:
netdata:
image: netdata/netdata
# ... rest of your config ...
volumes:
# ... other volumes ...
- /var/run/docker.sock:/var/run/docker.sock:ro
environment:
- DOCKER_USR=root

Pass command line options to Netdata

Since we use an ENTRYPOINT directive, you can provide Netdata daemon command line options such as the IP address Netdata will be running on, using the command instruction.

Install the Agent using Docker Compose with SSL/TLS enabled HTTP Proxy

For a permanent installation on a public server, you should secure the Netdata instance. This section contains an example of how to install Netdata with an SSL reverse proxy and basic authentication.

You can use the following docker-compose.yml and Caddyfile files to run Netdata with Docker. Replace the domains and email address for Let's Encrypt before starting.

Caddyfile

This file needs to be placed in /opt with name Caddyfile. Here you customize your domain and you need to provide your email address to obtain a Let's Encrypt certificate. Certificate renewal will happen automatically and will be executed internally by the caddy server.

netdata.example.org {
proxy / netdata:19999
}

docker-compose.yml

After setting Caddyfile run this with docker-compose up -d to have fully functioning Netdata setup behind HTTP reverse proxy.

version: '3'
volumes:
caddy:
services:
caddy:
image: abiosoft/caddy
ports:
- 80:80
- 443:443
volumes:
- /opt/Caddyfile:/etc/Caddyfile
- $HOME/.caddy:/root/.caddy
environment:
ACME_AGREE: 'true'
netdata:
restart: always
hostname: netdata.example.org
image: netdata/netdata
cap_add:
- SYS_PTRACE
security_opt:
- apparmor:unconfined
volumes:
- netdatalib:/var/lib/netdata
- netdatacache:/var/cache/netdata
- /etc/passwd:/host/etc/passwd:ro
- /etc/group:/host/etc/group:ro
- /proc:/host/proc:ro
- /sys:/host/sys:ro
- /var/run/docker.sock:/var/run/docker.sock:ro
volumes:
netdatalib:
netdatacache:

Restrict access with basic auth

You can restrict access by following official caddy guide and adding lines to Caddyfile.

Publish a test image to your own repository

At Netdata, we provide multiple ways of testing your Docker images using your own repositories. You may either use the command line tools available or take advantage of our Travis CI infrastructure.

Inside Netdata organization, using Travis CI

To enable Travis CI integration on your own repositories (Docker and Github), you need to be part of the Netdata organization.

Once you have contacted the Netdata owners to setup you up on Github and Travis, execute the following steps

  • Preparation

    • Have Netdata forked on your personal GitHub account
    • Get a GitHub token: Go to GitHub settings -> Developer Settings -> Personal access tokens, and generate a new token with full access to repo_hook, read-only access to admin:org, public_repo, repo_deployment, repo:status, and user:email settings enabled. This will be your GITHUB_TOKEN that is described later in the instructions, so keep it somewhere safe.
    • Contact the Netdata team and seek for permissions on https://scan.coverity.com should you require Travis to be able to push your forked code to coverity for analysis and report. Once you are setup, you should have your email you used in coverity and a token from them. These will be your COVERITY_SCAN_SUBMIT_EMAIL and COVERITY_SCAN_TOKEN that we will refer to later.
    • Have a valid Docker hub account, the credentials from this account will be your DOCKER_USERNAME and DOCKER_PWD mentioned later.
  • Setting up Travis CI for your own fork (Detailed instructions provided by Travis team here)

    • Login to travis with your own GITHUB credentials (There is Open Auth access)
    • Go to your profile settings, under repositories section and setup your Netdata fork to be built by Travis CI.
    • Once the repository has been setup, go to repository settings within Travis CI (usually under https://travis-ci.com/NETDATA_DEVELOPER/netdata/settings, where NETDATA_DEVELOPER is your GitHub handle), and select your desired settings.
  • While in Travis settings, under Netdata repository settings in the Environment Variables section, you need to add the following:

    • DOCKER_USERNAME and DOCKER_PWD variables so that Travis can login to your Docker Hub account and publish Docker images there.
    • REPOSITORY variable to NETDATA_DEVELOPER/netdata, where NETDATA_DEVELOPER is your GitHub handle again.
    • GITHUB_TOKEN variable with the token generated on the preparation step, for Travis workflows to function properly.
    • COVERITY_SCAN_SUBMIT_EMAIL and COVERITY_SCAN_TOKEN variables to enable Travis to submit your code for analysis to Coverity.

Having followed these instructions, your forked repository should be all set up for integration with Travis CI. Happy testing!

Last updated on