Note: This walkthrough uses the hostname
dokku.mein commands. When deploying to your own server, you should set the
DOKKU_DOMAINvalue in the
Vagrantfilebefore you initialize the Vagrant VM.
Once you have configured Dokku with at least one user, you can deploy applications using
git push. To quickly see Dokku deployment in action, try using the Heroku Ruby on Rails "Getting Started" app.
# from your local machine # SSH access to github must be enabled on this host git clone https://github.com/heroku/ruby-getting-started
SSH into the Dokku host and create the application as follows:
# on the Dokku host dokku apps:create ruby-getting-started
Dokku by default does not provide datastores (e.g. MySQL, PostgreSQL) on a newly created app. You can add datastore support by installing plugins, and the Dokku project provides official plugins for common datastores.
The Getting Started app requires a PostgreSQL service, so install the plugin and create the related service as follows:
# on the Dokku host # install the postgres plugin # plugin installation requires root, hence the user change sudo dokku plugin:install https://github.com/dokku/dokku-postgres.git # create a postgres service with the name railsdatabase dokku postgres:create railsdatabase
Each service may take a few moments to create.
Once the services have been created, you then set the
DATABASE_URL environment variable by linking the service, as follows:
# on the Dokku host # each official datastore offers a `link` method to link a service to any application dokku postgres:link railsdatabase ruby-getting-started
Dokku supports linking a single service to multiple applications as well as linking only one service per application.
Warning: Your app should respect the
PORTenvironment variable, otherwise it may not respond to web requests. You can find more information in the port management documentation.**
Now you can deploy the
ruby-getting-started app to your Dokku server. All you have to do is add a remote to name the app. Applications are created on-the-fly on the Dokku server.
# from your local machine # the remote username *must* be dokku or pushes will fail cd ruby-getting-started git remote add dokku email@example.com:ruby-getting-started git push dokku master
Note: Some tools may not support the short-upstream syntax referenced above, and you may need to prefix the upstream with the scheme
ssh://firstname.lastname@example.org:ruby-getting-startedPlease see the Git documentation for more details.
Note: Your private key should be registered with
ssh-agentin your local development environment. If you get a
permission deniederror when pushing, you can register your private key as follows:
ssh-add -k ~/<your private key>.
git push dokku master, you should have output similar to this in your terminal:
Counting objects: 231, done. Delta compression using up to 8 threads. Compressing objects: 100% (162/162), done. Writing objects: 100% (231/231), 36.96 KiB | 0 bytes/s, done. Total 231 (delta 93), reused 147 (delta 53) -----> Cleaning up... -----> Building ruby-getting-started from herokuish... -----> Adding BUILD_ENV to build environment... -----> Ruby app detected -----> Compiling Ruby/Rails -----> Using Ruby version: ruby-2.2.1 -----> Installing dependencies using 1.9.7 Running: bundle install --without development:test --path vendor/bundle --binstubs vendor/bundle/bin -j4 --deployment Fetching gem metadata from https://rubygems.org/........... Fetching version metadata from https://rubygems.org/... Fetching dependency metadata from https://rubygems.org/.. Using rake 10.4.2 ... =====> Application deployed: http://ruby-getting-started.dokku.me
Once the deploy is complete, the application's web URL will be generated as above.
Dokku supports deploying applications in a few ways:
If you only want to rebuild and tag a container, you can skip the deployment phase by setting
true by running:
# on the Dokku host dokku config:set ruby-getting-started DOKKU_SKIP_DEPLOY=true
If you need to redeploy or restart your app:
# on the Dokku host dokku ps:rebuild ruby-getting-started
See the process scaling documentation for more information on how to manage your app processes.
Dokku uses Git locally (i.e. not a Docker image) to build its own copy of your app repo, including submodules, as the
dokku user. This means that in order to deploy private Git submodules, you need to put your deploy key in
/home/dokku/.ssh/ and potentially add
github.com (or your VCS host key) into
/home/dokku/.ssh/known_hosts. You can use the following test to confirm your setup is correct:
# on the Dokku host su - dokku ssh-keyscan -t rsa github.com >> ~/.ssh/known_hosts ssh -T email@example.com
Warning: if the buildpack or Dockerfile build process require SSH key access for other reasons, the above may not always apply.
If you do not enter a fully qualified domain name when pushing your app, Dokku deploys the app to
<remotename>.yourdomain.tld as follows:
# from your local machine # the remote username *must* be dokku or pushes will fail git remote add dokku firstname.lastname@example.org:ruby-getting-started git push dokku master
remote: -----> Application deployed: remote: http://ruby-getting-started.dokku.me
You can also specify the fully qualified name as follows:
# from your local machine # the remote username *must* be dokku or pushes will fail git remote add dokku email@example.com:app.dokku.me git push dokku master
remote: -----> Application deployed: remote: http://app.dokku.me
This is useful when you want to deploy to the root domain:
# from your local machine # the remote username *must* be dokku or pushes will fail git remote add dokku firstname.lastname@example.org:dokku.me git push dokku master
... deployment ... remote: -----> Application deployed: remote: http://dokku.me
Dokku is, at its core, a Docker container manager. Thus, it does not necessarily play well with other out-of-band processes interacting with the Docker daemon.
Prior to every deployment, Dokku will execute a cleanup function. As of 0.5.x, the cleanup removes all containers with the
dokku label where the status is either
exited (previous versions would remove all
exited containers). The cleanup function also removes all images with
See the user management documentation for more information on how to manage users with access to your Dokku server.
See the domains documentation for more information on how to manage the default site.
See the Git documentation for more information on deploying a non-master branch to your application.
See the Dockerfile documentation for information Dokku's Dockerfile support.
See the image tagging documentation for more information on how Docker images can be tagged and deployed for a given application.
See the buildpack documentation for more information on how to specify a set of custom buildpacks for your application.
See the application management documentation for more information on how to remove an application from your Dokku server.
See the application management documentation for more information on how an application can be renamed and the impact of doing so upon the application and associated resources.
See the zero-downtime deploy documentation for more information on how Dokku enables zero-downtime deploys.