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Build Status Hyper - Hypervisor-agnostic Docker Runtime

What is Hyper?

Hyper is a hypervisor-agnostic tool that allows you to run Docker images on any hypervisor.

Why Hyper?

Hyper combines the best from both world: VM and Container.

- Container VM Hyper
Isolation Weak, shared kernel Strong, HW-enforced Strong, HW-enforced
Portable Yes, but kernel dependent sometimes No, hypervisor dependent Yes, hypervisor agnostic and portable image
Boot Fast, sub-second Slow, tens of seconds Fast, sub-second
Performance Great OK Good, minimal resource footprint and overhead
Immutable Yes No, configuration management required Yes, only kernel+image
Image Size Small, MBs Big, GBs Small, MBs
Compatibility No, need new tools Great, everything just works Good, it is still a "Machine", much less changes
Mature Not yet Production ready, SDN, SDS, LiveMigration, etc. Yes, just plug-&-play
ROI Rebuild everything with container - Reuse your virtual infrastructure

*BYOK = bring your own kernel


  • Docker 1.5 or later
  • QEMU 2.0 or later
  • Xen 4.5 and VT enabled host (for Xen support)


Ensure you are running Linux (kernel 3.8 or later) and have Docker (version 1.5 or later) and QEMU (version 2.0 or later) installed. Then install hyper with

curl -sSL | bash

Or download the binary tarball and install it directly.

To run hyper, just type hyper if you've installed packages.

For information on using the command line, just type hyper. You may use hyper <command> --help for detailed information on any specific command.


Build From Source

Clone hyper and runv in GoPath

> mkdir -p ${GOPATH}/src/
> cd ${GOPATH}/src/
> git clone runv
> git clone hyper

And make sure you have go (>= 1.4) and autotools, go into the hyper dir

> ./
> ./configure
> make

Then you can get the binaries hyperd daemon and hyper cmdline tool.

You may also need the kernel and initrd from HyperStart to run your own hyper.

Find out more

Contact Us

Found a bug, want to suggest a feature, or have a question? File an issue, or email When reporting a bug, please include which version of hyper you are running, as shown by hyper --version.


CLI and Daemon for Hyper







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