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Last pushed: 3 months ago
Short Description
Alpine Linux, s6 process management, Consul and nginx.
Full Description


A Docker image for running nginx with Consul, based on Alpine Linux.
This image belongs to a suite of images documented here.

Image size is ~50.9 MB.


This image features:


See for image contents.


To use this image include FROM smebberson/alpine-consul-nginx at the top of your Dockerfile, or simply docker run -p 80:80 -p 443:443 --name nginx smebberson/alpine-consul-nginx.

This container has been setup to automatically connect to a Consul cluster, created with a service name of consul. Read more about it here.


This container comes setup as follows:

  • nginx is automatically started for you.
  • If nginx dies, so will the container.
  • A basic nginx configuration and a simple default HTML file.
  • Consul service registration, and health check of the nginx service.

nginx logs (access and error logs) are automatically streamed to stdout. A service of name nginx is automatically setup within Consul, and a health check defined to report availability of the service to Consul.

HTML content

To alter the HTML content that nginx serves up (add your website files), add the following to your Dockerfile:

ADD /path/to/content /usr/html/

index.html is the default, but that's easily changed (see below).

nginx configuration

A basic nginx configuration is supplied with this image. But it's easy to overwrite:

  • Create your own nginx.conf.
  • In your Dockerfile, make sure your nginx.conf file is copied to /etc/nginx/nginx.conf.

Make sure you start nginx without daemon mode, by including daemon off; in your nginx configuration, otherwise the container will constantly exit right after nginx starts.

Restarting nginx

If you're running another process to keep track of something down-stream (for example, automatically updating nginx proxy settings when a down-stream application server (nodejs, php, etc) restarts) execute the command s6-svc -h /var/run/s6/services/nginx to send a SIGHUP to nginx and have it reload its configuration, launch new worker process(es) using this new configuration, while gracefully shutting down the old worker processes.

nginx crash

By default, if nginx crashes, the container will stop. This has been configured within root/etc/services.d/nginx/finish. This is so the host machine can handle any issues, and automatically restart it (the docker way, docker run --autorestart).

If you don't want this to happen, simply replace the root/etc/services.d/nginx/finish with a different file in your image. I like to ln -s /bin/true /root/etc/services.d/nginx/finish in those instances.

nginx pre-start configuration

If you need to, you can run a setup script before starting nginx. During your Dockerfile build process, copy across a file to /etc/services.d/nginx/run with the following (or customise it as required):

#!/usr/bin/with-contenv sh

if [ -e ./setup ]; then

# Start nginx.
nginx -g "daemon off;"

Consul service registration

By default the file at /etc/consul/conf.d/nginx.json will register an nginx service, on port 80 with Consul. It also registers a 5s health check that reports on the availability of the service. If you'd like to configure perhaps more ports, or change the health check another way, create a new file that meets the requirements of a Consul service definition and add it (in your Dockerfile) to your image, replacing the already existing nginx.json.


An example of using this image can be found in examples/user-consul-nginx.

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