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Linting tool for Dockerfiles based on recommendations from Dockerfile Reference and Best practices for writing Dockerfiles as of Docker 1.6.


With npm just do:

$ [sudo] npm install -g dockerlint


Once installed it's as easy as:

dockerlint Dockerfile

Which will parse the file and notify you about any actual errors (such an omitted tag when : is set), and warn you about common pitfalls or bad idiom such as the common use case of ADD.

In order to treat warnings as errors, use the -p flag.

Docker image

Alternatively there is a Docker image available.

This image provides a quick and easy way to validate your Dockerfiles, without having to install Node.JS and the dockerlint dependencies on your system.

First fetch the image from the Docker Hub:

docker pull redcoolbeans/dockerlint

You can either run it directly, or use docker-compose.

docker run

For a quick one-off validation:

docker run -it --rm -v "$PWD/Dockerfile":/Dockerfile:ro redcoolbeans/dockerlint


For docker-compose use a docker-compose.yml such as the following:

    image: redcoolbeans/dockerlint
      - ./Dockerfile:/Dockerfile

Then simply run:

docker-compose up dockerlint

This will validate the Dockerfile in your current directory.

Running from a git clone

If you've cloned this repository, you will need the following prerequisites:

  1. make
  2. npm
  3. coffee

Installing prerequisites on ubuntu:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install make
sudo apt-get install npm
sudo ln -s /usr/bin/nodejs /usr/bin/node
sudo npm install -g coffee-script

You can run dockerlint with:

make deps # runs npm install
make js && coffee bin/

If you're building on Windows, you'll have to set the path to your make:

npm config set dockerlint:winmake "mingw32-make.exe"

or pass it to every invocation:

npm run build:win --dockerlint:winmake=mingw32-make.exe


  • Add support for --version which checks against a specific Docker version
  • Refactor code to move the rule specific functions into a Rule class


MIT, please see the LICENSE file.


  1. Fork it
  2. Create your feature branch (git checkout -b my-new-feature)
  3. Commit your changes (git commit -am 'Add some feature')
  4. Push to the branch (git push origin my-new-feature)
  5. Create new Pull Request