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Last pushed: 2 years ago
Short Description
Install you application using a Git repo and composer.
Full Description


This is a Dockerfile to build a container image for nginx and php-fpm, with the ability to pull website code from git. The container also has the ability to update templated files with variables passed to docker in order to update your settings. There is also support for lets encrypt SSL support.

Git repository

The source files for this project can be found here:

If you have any improvements please submit a pull request.

Docker hub repository

The Docker hub build can be found here:


Tag Nginx PHP Alpine
latest 1.10.1 5.6.23 3.4
php5 1.10.1 5.6.23 3.4
php7 1.10.1 7.0.8 3.4

Building from source

To build from source you need to clone the git repo and run docker build:

git clone
docker build -t nginx-php-fpm:latest .

Pulling from Docker Hub

Pull the image from docker hub rather than downloading the git repo. This prevents you having to build the image on every docker host:

docker pull richarvey/nginx-php-fpm:latest


To simply run the container:

sudo docker run -d richarvey/nginx-php-fpm

You can then browse to http://<DOCKER_HOST>:8080 to view the default install files. To find your DOCKER_HOST use the docker inspect to get the IP address.

Available Configuration Parameters

The following flags are a list of all the currently supported options that can be changed by passing in the variables to docker with the -e flag.

  • GIT_REPO : URL to the repository containing your source code
  • GIT_BRANCH : Select a specific branch (optional)
  • GIT_EMAIL : Set your email for code pushing (required for git to work)
  • GIT_NAME : Set your name for code pushing (required for git to work)
  • SSH_KEY : Private SSH deploy key for your repository base64 encoded (requires write permissions for pushing)
  • WEBROOT : Change the default webroot directory from /var/www/html to your own setting
  • ERRORS : Set to 1 to display PHP Errors in the browser
  • TEMPLATE_NGINX_HTML : Enable by setting to 1 search and replace templating to happen on your code
  • HIDE_NGINX_HEADERS : Disable by setting to 0, default behaviour is to hide nginx + php version in headers
  • PHP_MEM_LIMIT : Set higher PHP memory limit, default is 128 Mb
  • PHP_POST_MAX_SIZE : Set a larger post_max_size, default is 100 Mb
  • PHP_UPLOAD_MAX_FILESIZE : Set a larger upload_max_filesize, default is 100 Mb
  • DOMAIN : Set domain name for Lets Encrypt scripts

Dynamically Pulling code from git

One of the nice features of this container is its ability to pull code from a git repository with a couple of environmental variables passed at run time.

Note: You need to have your SSH key that you use with git to enable the deployment. I recommend using a special deploy key per project to minimise the risk.

Preparing your SSH key

The container expects you pass it the SSH_KEY variable with a base64 encoded private key. First generate your key and then make sure to add it to github and give it write permissions if you want to be able to push code back out the container. Then run:

base64 -w 0 /path_to_your_key

Note: Copy the output be careful not to copy your prompt

To run the container and pull code simply specify the GIT_REPO URL including git@ and then make sure you have also supplied your base64 version of your ssh deploy key:

sudo docker run -d -e '' -e 'SSH_KEY=BIG_LONG_BASE64_STRING_GOES_IN_HERE' richarvey/nginx-php-fpm

To pull a repository and specify a branch add the GIT_BRANCH environment variable:

sudo docker run -d -e '' -e 'GIT_BRANCH=stage' -e 'SSH_KEY=BIG_LONG_BASE64_STRING_GOES_IN_HERE' richarvey/nginx-php-fpm

Enabling SSL or Special Nginx Configs

You can either map a local folder containing your configs to /etc/nginx or we recommend editing the files within conf directory that are in the git repo, and then rebuilding the base image.

Lets Encrypt support (Experimental)


You can use Lets Encrypt to secure your container. Make sure you start the container DOMAIN, GIT_EMAIL and WEBROOT variables to enable this to work. Then run:

sudo docker exec -t <CONTAINER_NAME> /usr/bin/letsencrypt-setup

Ensure your container is accessible on the DOMAIN you supply in order for this to work


Lets Encrypt certs expire every 90 days, to renew simply run:

sudo docker exec -t <CONTAINER_NAME> /usr/bin/letsencrypt-renew

Special Git Features

You'll need some extra ENV vars to enable this feature. These are GIT_EMAIL and GIT_NAME. This allows git to be set up correctly and allow the following commands to work.

Push code to Git

To push code changes made within the container back to git simply run:

sudo docker exec -t -i <CONTAINER_NAME> /usr/bin/push

Pull code from Git (Refresh)

In order to refresh the code in a container and pull newer code form git simply run:

sudo docker exec -t -i <CONTAINER_NAME> /usr/bin/pull


NOTE: You now need to enable templates see below
This container will automatically configure your web application if you template your code.

Using environment variables

For example if you are using a MySQL server, and you have a config.php file where you need to set the MySQL details include $$_MYSQL_HOST_$$ style template tags.

Example config.php::

database_host = $$_MYSQL_HOST_$$;
database_user = $$_MYSQL_USER_$$;
database_pass = $$_MYSQL_PASS_$$

To set the variables simply pass them in as environmental variables on the docker command line.


sudo docker run -d -e '' -e 'SSH_KEY=base64_key' -e 'TEMPLATE_NGINX_HTML=1' -e 'GIT_BRANCH=stage' -e 'MYSQL_HOST=host.x.y.z' -e 'MYSQL_USER=username' -e 'MYSQL_PASS=supper_secure_password' richarvey/nginx-php-fpm

This will expose the following variables that can be used to template your code.


Template anything

Yes ANYTHING, any variable exposed by the -e flag lets you template your configuration files. This means you can add redis, mariaDB, memcache or anything you want to your application very easily.

Logging and Errors


All logs should now print out in stdout/stderr and are available via the docker logs command:

docker logs <CONTAINER_NAME>
Docker Pull Command
Source Repository