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c792edb Feb 4, 2017
@williamstein @billpage
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SageMathCloud Docker image

This is a self-contained single-image multi-user SageMathCloud server.


  • This is not blatantly insecure: the database has a long random password, user accounts are separate, ssl communication is supported by default, etc.
  • That said, a determined user with an account can very likely access or change files of other users in the same container! Use this for personal use, behind a firewall, or with an account creation token, so that only other people you trust create accounts. Don't make one of these publicly available with important data in it and no account creation token!
  • There are no quotas except idle timeout.
  • See the open docker-related SageMathCloud issues, which may include several issues.


Technical Note: This Docker image only supports 64-bit Intel.

Install Docker on your computer (e.g., apt-get install on Ubuntu). Make sure you have at least 7GB disk space free, then type

docker run --name=smc -d -v ~/smc:/projects -p 80:80 -p 443:443 sagemathinc/sagemathcloud

(If you get an error about the Docker daemon, instead run sudo docker ....)

The above command will first download the image, then start SageMathCloud, storing your data in the directory ~/smc on your computer. (If you want to store your worksheets and edit history elsewhere, change ~/smc to something else.) Once your local SageMathCloud is running, open your web browser to http://localhost (or https://localhost).

The docker container is called smc and you can refer to the container and use commands like:

$ docker stop smc
$ docker start smc

You can watch the logs:

$ docker logs smc -f

Clock skew on OS X

It is critical that the Docker container have the correct time, since SMC assumes that the server has the correct time. On a laptop running Docker under OS X, the clock will get messed up any time you suspend/resume your laptop. A very easy to install workaround is at

SSH port forwarding

If you're running this docker image on a remote server and want to use ssh port forwarding to connect, type

ssh -L 8080:localhost:80 username@remote_server

then open your web browser to http://localhost:8080

For much enhanced security, instead make the container only listen on localhost

docker stop smc
docker rm smc
docker run --name=smc -d -v ~/smc:/projects -p sagemathinc/sagemathcloud

Then the only way to access your SMC server is to type the following on your local computer

ssh -L 8080:localhost:80 username@remote_server

and open your web browser to http://localhost:8080

Make a user an admins

Get a bash shell insider the container, then connect to the database and make all users admins as follows:

$ docker exec -it smc bash
root@931045eda11f:/# coffee
coffee> require 'c'; db()
coffee> db.make_user_admin(email_address:'', cb:done())

Obviously, make the user you created (with its email address) an admin, not me! Refresh your browser, and then you should see an extra admin panel in the lower right of accounts settings; you can also open any project by directly visiting its URL.

Account Creation Token

After making your main account an admin as above, search for "Account Creation Token" in your account settings. Put some random string there and other people will not be able to create accounts in your SMC container, without knowing that token.

Your data

If you started the container as above, there will be a directory ~/smc on your host computer that contains all data and files related to your projects and users -- go ahead and verify that it is there before ugrading. It might look like this:

Williams-MacBook-Pro:~ wstein$ ls smc
be889c14-dc96-4538-989b-4117ffe84148    postgres    conf

The directory postgres contains the database files, so all projects, users, file editing history, etc. The directory conf contains some secrets and log files. There will also be one directory (like be889c14-dc96-4538-989b-4117ffe84148) for each project that is created.


To get the newest image, do this (which will take some time):

docker pull  sagemathinc/sagemathcloud

Once done, you can delete and recreate your smc container. This will not delete any of your project or user data, which you confirmed above is in ~/smc.

docker stop smc
docker rm smc
docker run --name=smc -d -v ~/smc:/projects -p 80:80 -p 443:443 sagemathinc/sagemathcloud


This section is for SageMathCloud developers.

Build the image

make build-full   # or make build

Run the image (to test)

make run

How I pushed this

docker tag smc:latest sagemathinc/sagemathcloud
docker login --username=sagemathinc
docker push  sagemathinc/sagemathcloud

Also to build at a specific commit.

docker build --build-arg commit=121b564a6b08942849372b9ffdcdddd7194b3e89 -t smc .