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MAD SCIENCE realtime boot of remote docker images using bittorrent
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bin Adds --announce, -a option to create Oct 5, 2015
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MAD SCIENCE realtime boot of remote docker images using bittorrent

npm install -g torrent-docker
torrent-docker --help


Docker images are HUGE. A simple hello world node app easily takes up > 600MB space. Downloading/uploading these images can a looong time.

To fix this torrent-docker implements a union file system that allows you to mount a docker image shared using bittorrent and boot a container - all in realtime!



Seed a docker image

First create a docker image

FROM ubuntu:14.04
RUN apt-get update && apt-get install -qy curl vim

Then build it

docker build -t test-image .

Now all we need to do is create a torrent from the docker image

torrent-docker create test-image

This creates a file test-image.torrent and a data folder test-image/. Share this torrent using your favorite torrent client or do

torrent-docker seed test-image.torrent # will print a activity log

Realtime boot the docker image

Now copy test-image.torrent to another machine. To boot the image do

torrent-docker boot test-image.torrent my-container

This will mount the torrent as a union file system (that is writable!) and boot the docker image. In addition it will also seed the torrent which means the more containers you boot the more the torrent will be seeded.

You can attach to the debug log to see download speed, how many peers your are connected to, which files are being accessed etc using

nc localhost 10000 # will tail the debug log from the boot process

After a couple of seconds (depending on your internet connection, ymmw) you should be attached to a bash process running in your image! If for some reason your boot process cannot find a seeder you can specify them doing

torrent-docker boot test-image.torrent my-container --peer

Optionally you can start your own tracker

torrent-docker tracker --port 8080
torrent-docker boot test-image.torrent my-container --tracker


On OSX you'll need the following

To make /var, /etc belong to root you need to run the following after installing boot2docker

boot2docker ssh
sudo umount /Users
sudo mount -t vboxsf Users /Users/

You need to run this everytime you boot boot2docker



Currently I have only tested this on OSX using OSX fuse and boot2docker.

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