A bitcoin-core docker image
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README.md

ruimarinho/bitcoin-core

A bitcoin-core docker image.

ruimarinho/bitcoin-core ruimarinho/bitcoin-core ruimarinho/bitcoin-core ruimarinho/bitcoin-core

Tags

Picking the right tag

  • ruimarinho/bitcoin-core:latest: points to the latest stable release available of Bitcoin Core. Use this only if you know what you're doing as upgrading Bitcoin Core blindly is a risky procedure.
  • ruimarinho/bitcoin-core:<version>: based on a slim Debian image, points to a specific version branch or release of Bitcoin Core. Uses the pre-compiled binaries which are fully tested by the Bitcoin Core team.
  • ruimarinho/bitcoin-core:<version>-alpine: based on Alpine Linux with Berkeley DB 4.8 (cross-compatible build), points to a specific version branch or release of Bitcoin Core. Uses a simple, resource efficient Linux distribution with security in mind, but is not officially supported by the Bitcoin Core team. Use at your own risk.

What is Bitcoin Core?

Bitcoin Core is a reference client that implements the Bitcoin protocol for remote procedure call (RPC) use. It is also the second Bitcoin client in the network's history. Learn more about Bitcoin Core on the Bitcoin Developer Reference docs.

Usage

How to use this image

This image contains the main binaries from the Bitcoin Core project - bitcoind, bitcoin-cli and bitcoin-tx. It behaves like a binary, so you can pass any arguments to the image and they will be forwarded to the bitcoind binary:

❯ docker run --rm -it ruimarinho/bitcoin-core \
  -printtoconsole \
  -regtest=1 \
  -rpcallowip=172.17.0.0/16 \
  -rpcauth='foo:7d9ba5ae63c3d4dc30583ff4fe65a67e$9e3634e81c11659e3de036d0bf88f89cd169c1039e6e09607562d54765c649cc'

Note: learn more about how -rpcauth works for remote authentication.

By default, bitcoind will run as user bitcoin for security reasons and with its default data dir (~/.bitcoin). If you'd like to customize where bitcoin-core stores its data, you must use the BITCOIN_DATA environment variable. The directory will be automatically created with the correct permissions for the bitcoin user and bitcoin-core automatically configured to use it.

❯ docker run --env BITCOIN_DATA=/var/lib/bitcoin-core --rm -it ruimarinho/bitcoin-core \
  -printtoconsole \
  -regtest=1

You can also mount a directory it in a volume under /home/bitcoin/.bitcoin in case you want to access it on the host:

❯ docker run -v ${PWD}/data:/home/bitcoin/.bitcoin -it --rm ruimarinho/bitcoin-core \
  -printtoconsole \
  -regtest=1

You can optionally create a service using docker-compose:

bitcoin-core:
  image: ruimarinho/bitcoin-core
  command:
    -printtoconsole
    -regtest=1

Using RPC to interact with the daemon

There are two communications methods to interact with a running Bitcoin Core daemon.

The first one is using a cookie-based local authentication. It doesn't require any special authentication information as running a process locally under the same user that was used to launch the Bitcoin Core daemon allows it to read the cookie file previously generated by the daemon for clients. The downside of this method is that it requires local machine access.

The second option is making a remote procedure call using a username and password combination. This has the advantage of not requiring local machine access, but in order to keep your credentials safe you should use the newer rpcauth authentication mechanism.

Using cookie-based local authentication

Start by launch the Bitcoin Core daemon:

❯ docker run --rm --name bitcoin-server -it ruimarinho/bitcoin-core \
  -printtoconsole \
  -regtest=1

Then, inside the running bitcoin-server container, locally execute the query to the daemon using bitcoin-cli:

❯ docker exec --user bitcoin bitcoin-server bitcoin-cli -regtest getmininginfo

{
  "blocks": 0,
  "currentblocksize": 0,
  "currentblockweight": 0,
  "currentblocktx": 0,
  "difficulty": 4.656542373906925e-10,
  "errors": "",
  "networkhashps": 0,
  "pooledtx": 0,
  "chain": "regtest"
}

In the background, bitcoin-cli read the information automatically from /home/bitcoin/.bitcoin/regtest/.cookie. In production, the path would not contain the regtest part.

Using rpcauth for remote authentication

Before setting up remote authentication, you will need to generate the rpcauth line that will hold the credentials for the Bitcoind Core daemon. You can either do this yourself by constructing the line with the format <user>:<salt>$<hash> or use the official rpcauth.py script to generate this line for you, including a random password that is printed to the console.

Example:

❯ curl -sSL https://raw.githubusercontent.com/bitcoin/bitcoin/master/share/rpcauth/rpcauth.py | python - <username>

String to be appended to bitcoin.conf:
rpcauth=foo:7d9ba5ae63c3d4dc30583ff4fe65a67e$9e3634e81c11659e3de036d0bf88f89cd169c1039e6e09607562d54765c649cc
Your password:
qDDZdeQ5vw9XXFeVnXT4PZ--tGN2xNjjR4nrtyszZx0=

Note that for each run, even if the username remains the same, the output will be always different as a new salt and password are generated.

Now that you have your credentials, you need to start the Bitcoin Core daemon with the -rpcauth option. Alternatively, you could append the line to a bitcoin.conf file and mount it on the container.

Let's opt for the Docker way:

❯ docker run --rm --name bitcoin-server -it ruimarinho/bitcoin-core \
  -printtoconsole \
  -regtest=1 \
  -rpcallowip=172.17.0.0/16 \
  -rpcauth='foo:7d9ba5ae63c3d4dc30583ff4fe65a67e$9e3634e81c11659e3de036d0bf88f89cd169c1039e6e09607562d54765c649cc'

Two important notes:

  1. Some shells require escaping the rpcauth line (e.g. zsh), as shown above.
  2. It is now perfectly fine to pass the rpcauth line as a command line argument. Unlike -rpcpassword, the content is hashed so even if the arguments would be exposed, they would not allow the attacker to get the actual password.

You can now connect via bitcoin-cli or any other compatible client. You will still have to define a username and password when connecting to the Bitcoin Core RPC server.

To avoid any confusion about whether or not a remote call is being made, let's spin up another container to execute bitcoin-cli and connect it via the Docker network using the password generated above:

❯ docker run -it --link bitcoin-server --rm ruimarinho/bitcoin-core \
  bitcoin-cli \
  -rpcconnect=bitcoin-server \
  -regtest \
  -rpcuser=foo\
  -stdinrpcpass \
  getbalance

Enter the password qDDZdeQ5vw9XXFeVnXT4PZ--tGN2xNjjR4nrtyszZx0= and hit enter:

0.00000000

Note: under Bitcoin Core < 0.16, use -rpcpassword="qDDZdeQ5vw9XXFeVnXT4PZ--tGN2xNjjR4nrtyszZx0=" instead of -stdinrpcpass.

Done!

Exposing Ports

Depending on the network (mode) the Bitcoin Core daemon is running as well as the chosen runtime flags, several default ports may be available for mapping.

Ports can be exposed by mapping all of the available ones (using -P and based on what EXPOSE documents) or individually by adding -p. This mode allows assigning a dynamic port on the host (-p <port>) or assigning a fixed port -p <hostPort>:<containerPort>.

Example for running a node in regtest mode mapping JSON-RPC/REST (18443) and P2P (18444) ports:

docker run --rm -it \
  -p 18443:18443 \
  -p 18444:18444 \
  ruimarinho/bitcoin-core \
  -printtoconsole \
  -regtest=1 \
  -rpcallowip=172.17.0.0/16 \
  -rpcauth='foo:7d9ba5ae63c3d4dc30583ff4fe65a67e$9e3634e81c11659e3de036d0bf88f89cd169c1039e6e09607562d54765c649cc'

To test that mapping worked, you can send a JSON-RPC curl request to the host port:

curl --data-binary '{"jsonrpc":"1.0","id":"1","method":"getnetworkinfo","params":[]}' http://foo:qDDZdeQ5vw9XXFeVnXT4PZ--tGN2xNjjR4nrtyszZx0=@127.0.0.1:18443/

Mainnet

  • JSON-RPC/REST: 8332
  • P2P: 8333

Testnet

  • Testnet JSON-RPC: 18332
  • P2P: 18333

Regtest

  • JSON-RPC/REST: 18443 (since 0.16+, otherwise 18332)
  • P2P: 18444

Archived tags

Please note that due to CVE-2018-17144, the following tags are unavailable: 0.14.0, 0.14.1, 0.14.2, 0.15.0, 0.15.0.1, 0.15.1, 0.16.0, 0.16.1 and 0.16.2.

For historical reasons, the following tags are still available and automatically updated when the underlying base image (Alpine Linux or Debian stable) is updated as well:

Docker

This image is officially supported on Docker version 17.09, with support for older versions provided on a best-effort basis.

License

License information for the software contained in this image.

License information for the ruimarinho/docker-bitcoin-core docker project.