First steps with Docker Checkpoint – to create and restore snapshots of running containers by Lucas Jellema


Docker Containers can be stopped and started again. Changes made to the file system in a running container will survive this deliberate stop and start cycle. Data in memory and running processes obviously do not. A container that crashes cannot just be restarted and will have a file system in an undetermined state if it can be restarted. When you start a container after it was stopped, it will go through its full startup routine. If heavy duty processes needs to be started – such as a database server process – this startup time can be substantial, as in many seconds or dozens of seconds.

Linux has a mechanism called CRIU or Checkpoint/Restore In Userspace. Using this tool, you can freeze a running application (or part of it) and checkpoint it as a collection of files on disk. You can then use the files to restore the application and run it exactly as it was during the time of the freeze. See for details. Docker CE has (experimental) support for CRIU. This means that using straightforward docker commands we can take a snapshot of a running container (docker checkpoint create <container name> <checkpointname>). At a later moment, we can start this snapshot as the same container (docker start –checkpoint <checkpointname> <container name> ) or as a different container.

The container that is started from a checkpoint is in the same state – memory and processes – as the container was when the checkpoint was created. Additionally, the startup time of the container from the snapshot is very short (subsecond); for containers with fairly long startup times – this rapid startup can be a huge boon. Read the complete article here.


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Technorati Tags: PaaS,Cloud,Middleware Update,WebLogic, WebLogic Community,Oracle,OPN,Jürgen Kress

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