Public | Automated Build

Last pushed: 2 years ago
Short Description
Unprivileged systemd container
Full Description


Docker files for an unprivileged systemd container based on CentOS 7.

This image is intended to be a base for other images.

To build it simply execute ./

To run a container simply execute ./


[root@mwysocki docker-systemd-unpriv]# ./
Sending build context to Docker daemon 122.4 kB
Sending build context to Docker daemon
Step 0 : FROM centos:centos7
 ---> 7322fbe74aa5
Step 1 : MAINTAINER Marcel Wysocki ""
 ---> Using cache
 ---> 00c8b93cf714
Step 2 : ENV container docker
 ---> Using cache
 ---> 9b8f4fb8200a
Step 3 : RUN yum -y update; yum clean all
 ---> Using cache
 ---> 3345a7b137ca
Step 4 : RUN yum -y swap -- remove systemd-container systemd-container-libs -- install systemd systemd-libs dbus
 ---> Using cache
 ---> b96655caefbc
Step 5 : RUN systemctl mask dev-mqueue.mount dev-hugepages.mount     systemd-remount-fs.service sys-kernel-config.mount     sys-kernel-debug.mount sys-fs-fuse-connections.mount     display-manager.service systemd-logind.service
 ---> Running in 15346731ae25
 ---> 1ee09b86a67b
Removing intermediate container 15346731ae25
Step 6 : ADD dbus.service /etc/systemd/system/dbus.service
 ---> 30046edacbd0
Removing intermediate container 84556db3d846
Step 7 : RUN systemctl enable dbus.service
 ---> Running in 151ced2a823e
 ---> fd86e74cf704
Removing intermediate container 151ced2a823e
Step 8 : VOLUME /sys/fs/cgroup
 ---> Running in bd81371550ca
 ---> 1c888d9613f8
Removing intermediate container bd81371550ca
Step 9 : VOLUME /run
 ---> Running in 1bcb2d277021
 ---> de4f43ca3837
Removing intermediate container 1bcb2d277021
Step 10 : CMD /usr/lib/systemd/systemd
 ---> Running in b660c5d8cba6
 ---> 1d7ff7bdbd64
Removing intermediate container b660c5d8cba6
Successfully built 1d7ff7bdbd64
[root@mwysocki docker-systemd-unpriv]# ./
Wed Jul 29 17:11:14 CEST 2015
To enter docker container run:
        docker exec -t -i 1302a1dbd5ff09e720c566ea6b87f1233f0cc14370022a900bdc84e8d07a27f5 /bin/bash
[root@mwysocki docker-systemd-unpriv]#         docker exec -t -i 1302a1dbd5ff09e720c566ea6b87f1233f0cc14370022a900bdc84e8d07a27f5 /bin/bash
[root@1302a1dbd5ff /]# ps -ux
root         1  0.7  0.0  53584  3328 ?        Ss   15:11   0:00 /usr/lib/systemd/systemd
root        14  0.1  0.0  43024  5232 ?        Ss   15:11   0:00 /usr/lib/systemd/systemd-journald
root        24  0.4  0.0  11748  1940 ?        Ss   15:11   0:00 /bin/bash
root        39  0.0  0.0  19772  1476 ?        R+   15:11   0:00 ps -ux
[root@1302a1dbd5ff /]#

As an alternative you can get a pre-built container:
docker pull maci0/systemd
Or just run it using the default docker command (this should pull the image automatically):
docker run -v /sys/fs/cgroup:/sys/fs/cgroup:ro maci0/systemd
For more information see: or

Docker Pull Command
Source Repository

Comments (4)
2 years ago

Thanks for editing the dockerfile. I was able to get it running with the code you provided. I'm wondering why we run the container in detach mode then connect to run bash.

Is there a way to do that with the CMD directive?

2 years ago

Already upgraded to 7.1. Image works fine here.
If by hanging you mean it doesnt give you a login prompt thats correct.
If you need a full OS with multi user capabilities in a container you should look at systemd-nspawn.

2 years ago

Hi Taylor,

you are right. in RHEL 7.1 fakesystemd has been replaced with systemd-container and systemd-container-libs.
If you change it to yum -y swap -- remove systemd-container systemd-container-libs -- install systemd systemd-libs
It should install the default systemd again. Im not sure about the implications here and what they actually changed in systemd-container. Maybe using that is enough already.

The whole point of my image was that there is no need for privileged mode, however you still need the cgroup mount.
See how I run it:

Graphical target should be disabled, maybe we need to mask it as well.

I will toy around with it as soon as I got some free time and will adapt to centos 7.1


2 years ago

Hello maci0,

Thanks for sharing this Dockerfile.

Im having some trouble getting this to work.

The first issue I had was getting the file to build. I believe fakesystemd has been replaces with systemd-container and systemd-container-libs. Substitution those packages allowed the dockerfile to build.

The second Issue I have is running the conatiner. Looking at other dockerfiles i found online, which have similar contents, I see the start args being as follows:

docker run –privileged -ti -v /sys/fs/cgroup:/sys/fs/cgroup:ro <container>

In your example you are not using the privileged flag and also not mapping the volume to the one defined in the dockerfile.

Thirdly, When I am able to run the container using the command above, the container seems to hang. I dont have the exact log message as I am not in front of my dev machine. It is something to the effect of locating "Graphical Target".

Any help would be appreciated.