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How to execute commands inside Docker containers

Apr 08, 2022 · 1 min read · Post a comment
How to execute commands inside Docker containers

Although it may seem like manually executing commands inside Docker containers could be considered as an anti-pattern, actually it might be useful for instance when debugging things in non-production environments. This is done with the docker exec command which obviously starts a new command in a running container. Without further ado let’s see how it’s done.

Prerequisites

  • Docker

Solution

Step 1. Connect to the running container node (instance) and run the following command:

docker exec -it <container_id_or_name> echo "Hi there from container!"

Usually, docker exec is used when attaching a shell though, so if you want to connect to the container first, run the following command:

docker exec -it <container_id_or_name> /bin/sh

Note: If /bin/bash throws an error, try with /bin/sh.

Conclusion

Do you agree that running commands from inside running containers is a bad practice? why or why not? Please let me know in the comments section below.
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