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Docker Images Tree Visualisation

07 August 2017 Comments off

2 minutes


Docker Post

On recent Docker release, you might be surprised that the tree view no longer works as expected:

$ docker images --tree

The above command would produce a visual dump of the images inside the container. The command generated a hierarchy of the images, showing the relationship between parent and children. However, this command has been dropped since Docker version 1.6. So what do you do?

You can use the custom document plugin images, DockViz from JustOne of Github (

The simplest way is start up the docker image and login as a Bash user. Upgrade yourself to root superuser and then launch the following command:

$ alias dockviz="docker run -it --rm -v /var/run/docker.sock:/var/run/docker.sock nate/dockviz"

Now execute the alias:

$ docker dataviz -t

This command downloads the DockViz image then executes Docker API using the protocol, obviously over the named UNIX socket. The result is a hierarchy tree of the images in your container, very similarly to “docker images -t”

If you have trouble getting access to /var/run/docker.sock even as “root” superuser. Try the following by adding the –privileged flag to the alias command. Run the following command:

$ alias dockviz="docker run -it --privileged --rm -v /var/run/docker.sock:/var/run/docker.sock nate/dockviz"

My final tip is add the “alias” to the login script for the superuser. Here is the command for that:

$ echo 'alias dockviz="docker run -it --rm -v /var/run/docker.sock:/var/run/docker.sock nate/dockviz"' > ~/.bash_profile

This is because RHEL, CentOS and SE Linux restrict access to the docker socket even for superusers. Channeling “SECURITAH!” @SwiftOfSecurity 😉

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