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What is nginx?

nginx (pronounced "engine-x") is an open source reverse proxy server for HTTP, HTTPS, SMTP, POP3 and IMAP protocols, as well as a load balancer, HTTP cache, and a web server (origin server).


$ docker run --name nginx bitnami/nginx:latest

Docker Compose

$ curl -sSL > docker-compose.yml
$ docker-compose up -d

Why use Bitnami Images?

  • Bitnami closely tracks upstream source changes and promptly publishes new versions of this image using our automated systems.
  • With Bitnami images the latest bug fixes and features are available as soon as possible.
  • Bitnami containers, virtual machines and cloud images use the same components and configuration approach - making it easy to switch between formats based on your project needs.
  • Bitnami images are built on CircleCI and automatically pushed to the Docker Hub.
  • All our images are based on minideb a minimalist Debian based container image which gives you a small base container image and the familiarity of a leading linux distribution.

Why use a non-root container?

Non-root container images add an extra layer of security and are generally recommended for production environments. However, because they run as a non-root user, privileged tasks are typically off-limits. Learn more about non-root containers in our docs.

Supported tags and respective Dockerfile links

NOTE: Debian 8 images have been deprecated in favor of Debian 9 images. Bitnami will not longer publish new Docker images based on Debian 8.

Learn more about the Bitnami tagging policy and the difference between rolling tags and immutable tags in our documentation page.

Get this image

The recommended way to get the Bitnami nginx Docker Image is to pull the prebuilt image from the Docker Hub Registry.

$ docker pull bitnami/nginx:latest

To use a specific version, you can pull a versioned tag. You can view the list of available versions in the Docker Hub Registry.

$ docker pull bitnami/nginx:[TAG]

If you wish, you can also build the image yourself.

$ docker build -t bitnami/nginx:latest

Hosting a static website

This nginx image exposes a volume at /app. Content mounted here is served by the default catch-all virtual host.

$ docker run -v /path/to/app:/app bitnami/nginx:latest

or using Docker Compose:

version: '2'

    image: 'bitnami/nginx:latest'
      - '80:8080'
      - /path/to/app:/app

Accessing your server from the host

To access your web server from your host machine you can ask Docker to map a random port on your host to ports 8080 and 8443 exposed in the container.

$ docker run --name nginx -P bitnami/nginx:latest

Run docker port to determine the random ports Docker assigned.

$ docker port nginx
8080/tcp ->

You can also manually specify the ports you want forwarded from your host to the container.

$ docker run -p 9000:8080 bitnami/nginx:latest

Access your web server in the browser by navigating to http://localhost:9000.


Adding custom virtual hosts

The default nginx.conf includes virtual hosts placed in /bitnami/nginx/conf/vhosts/. You can mount a my_vhost.conf file containing your custom virtual hosts at this location.

For example, in order add a vhost for

Step 1: Write your my_vhost.conf file with the following content.

server {
  root /app;
  index index.htm index.html;

Step 2: Mount the configuration as a volume.

$ docker run --name nginx \
  -v /path/to/my_vhost.conf:/opt/bitnami/nginx/conf/vhosts/my_vhost.conf:ro \

or using Docker Compose:

version: '2'

    image: 'bitnami/nginx:latest'
      - '80:8080'
      - /path/to/my_vhost.conf:/opt/bitnami/nginx/conf/vhosts/my_vhost.conf:ro

Using custom SSL certificates

NOTE: The steps below assume that you are using a custom domain name and that you have already configured the custom domain name to point to your server.

Step 1: Prepare your certificate files

In your local computer, create a folder called certs and put your certificates files. Make sure you rename both files to server.crt and server.key respectively:

$ mkdir /path/to/nginx-persistence/nginx/conf/bitnami/certs -p
$ cp /path/to/certfile.crt /path/to/nginx-persistence/nginx/conf/bitnami/certs/server.crt
$ cp /path/to/keyfile.key  /path/to/nginx-persistence/nginx/conf/bitnami/certs/server.key

Step 2: Provide a custom Virtual Host for SSL connections

Write your my_vhost.conf file with the SSL configuration and the relative path to the certificates.

  server {
    listen       8443 ssl;
    ssl_certificate      bitnami/certs/server.crt;
    ssl_certificate_key  bitnami/certs/server.key;
    ssl_session_cache    shared:SSL:1m;
    ssl_session_timeout  5m;
    ssl_ciphers  HIGH:!aNULL:!MD5;
    ssl_prefer_server_ciphers  on;
    location / {
      root   html;
      index  index.html index.htm;

Step 3: Run the Nginx image and open the SSL port

Run the Nginx image, mounting the certificates directory from your host.

$ docker run --name nginx \
  -v /path/to/my_vhost.conf:/opt/bitnami/nginx/conf/vhosts/my_vhost.conf:ro \
  -v /path/to/nginx-persistence/nginx/conf/bitnami/certs:/bitnami/nginx/conf/bitnami/certs \

or using Docker Compose:

version: '2'

    image: 'bitnami/nginx:latest'
    - '80:8080'
    - '443:8443'
    - /path/to/nginx-persistence/nginx/conf/bitnami/certs:/bitnami/nginx/conf/bitnami/certs

Full configuration

The image looks for configurations in /opt/bitnami/nginx/conf/nginx.conf. You can overwrite the nginx.conf file using your own custom configuration file.

$ docker run --name nginx \
  -v /path/to/your_nginx.conf:/opt/bitnami/nginx/conf/nginx.conf \

or using Docker Compose:

version: '2'

    image: 'bitnami/nginx:latest'
      - '80:8080'
      - /path/to/your_nginx.conf:/opt/bitnami/nginx/conf/nginx.conf

Reverse proxy to other containers

nginx can be used to reverse proxy to other containers using Docker's linking system. This is particularly useful if you want to serve dynamic content through an nginx frontend. Bitnami provides example virtual hosts for all of our runtime containers in /opt/bitnami/nginx/conf/vhosts/.

Further Reading:


The Bitnami nginx Docker image sends the container logs to the stdout. To view the logs:

$ docker logs nginx

or using Docker Compose:

$ docker-compose logs nginx

You can configure the containers logging driver using the --log-driver option if you wish to consume the container logs differently. In the default configuration docker uses the json-file driver.


Upgrade this image

Bitnami provides up-to-date versions of nginx, including security patches, soon after they are made upstream. We recommend that you follow these steps to upgrade your container.

Step 1: Get the updated image

$ docker pull bitnami/nginx:latest

or if you're using Docker Compose, update the value of the image property to bitnami/nginx:latest.

Step 2: Stop and backup the currently running container

Stop the currently running container using the command

$ docker stop nginx

or using Docker Compose:

$ docker-compose stop nginx

Step 3: Remove the currently running container

$ docker rm -v nginx

or using Docker Compose:

$ docker-compose rm -v nginx

Step 4: Run the new image

Re-create your container from the new image.

$ docker run --name nginx bitnami/nginx:latest

or using Docker Compose:

$ docker-compose up nginx

Useful Links

Notable Changes

Debian 9 1.14.0-r28 and OL 7 1.14.0-r49

  • Added support for legacy paths for the 'nginx.conf' file and 'vhosts'.
  • Added warning for users that continue using the /bitnami/nginx/conf/ path.

Debian 9 1.14.0-r25 and OL 7 1.14.0-r46

  • Decrease the size of the container. It is not necessary Node.js anymore. Nginx configuration moved to bash scripts in the rootfs/ folder.
  • Removed sample SSL certificates. The port 443/8443 is not enabled by default.
  • The main nginx.conf file is not persisted in a volume. The path is /opt/bitnami/nginx/conf/nginx.conf.
  • Dropped the default volume for persisting the configuration files.


  • The nginx container has been migrated to a non-root container approach. Previously the container run as root user and the nginx daemon was started as nginx user. From now on, both the container and the nginx daemon run as user 1001. As a consequence, the configuration files are writable by the user running the nginx process.


  • The configuration volume has been moved to /bitnami/nginx. Now you only need to mount a single volume at /bitnami/nginx for persisting configuration. /app is still used for serving content by the default virtual host.
  • The logs are always sent to the stdout and are no longer collected in the volume.

1.8.0-4-r01 (2015-10-05)

  • /app directory is no longer exported as a volume. This caused problems when building on top of the image, since changes in the volume are not persisted between Dockerfile RUN instructions. To keep the previous behavior (so that you can mount the volume in another container), create the container with the -v /app option.


We'd love for you to contribute to this container. You can request new features by creating an issue, or submit a pull request with your contribution.


If you encountered a problem running this container, you can file an issue. For us to provide better support, be sure to include the following information in your issue:

  • Host OS and version
  • Docker version (docker version)
  • Output of docker info
  • Version of this container (echo $BITNAMI_IMAGE_VERSION inside the container)
  • The command you used to run the container, and any relevant output you saw (masking any sensitive information)


Copyright (c) 2015-2018 Bitnami

Licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0 (the "License"); you may not use this file except in compliance with the License. You may obtain a copy of the License at

Unless required by applicable law or agreed to in writing, software distributed under the License is distributed on an "AS IS" BASIS, WITHOUT WARRANTIES OR CONDITIONS OF ANY KIND, either express or implied. See the License for the specific language governing permissions and limitations under the License.