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Install Docker on Raspberry Pi Installing Docker and Docker Compose on the Raspberry Pi in 5 Simple Steps

rohansawant profile image Rohan Sawant Updated on ใƒป1 min read

You know what Docker is. You know what a Raspberry Pi is. Let me make sure they hit it off together. ๐Ÿ˜Ž๐Ÿค๐Ÿฝ

This is probably one of the quickest and easiest ways to get Docker and Docker Compose running on the Raspberry Pi.
(Tested with Raspberry Pi B+ Rev 1.2 and Raspberry Pi 4)

After searching the Inter-Webs for hours and having several things not work for me, I decided something needed to be done about it.


1. Install Docker

curl -sSL https://get.docker.com | sh

2. Add permission to Pi User to run Docker Commands

sudo usermod -aG docker pi

Reboot here or run the next commands with a sudo

3. Test Docker installation

docker run hello-world

4. IMPORTANT! Install proper dependencies

sudo apt-get install -y libffi-dev libssl-dev

sudo apt-get install -y python3 python3-pip

sudo apt-get remove python-configparser

5. Install Docker Compose

sudo pip3 -v install docker-compose

Boom! ๐Ÿ”ฅ It's done!

Important Notice about Docker on the Raspberry Pi

Raspberry Pis use the ARM architecture, and as a result, won't be compatible with all containers out of the box. Images will need to be built from an ARM base image. But, most of these images can easily be found on Docker Hub

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Rohan Sawant


Hi! I'm Rohan, a Full Stack Software Engineer, with a background of working with Deep Learning and AI, who loves to use his skills to create products that are at the intersection of all of these!


markdown guide

Thanks so much! Worked on Raspberry Pi 4

sudo apt-get -y install libffi-dev libssl-dev python3-dev python3 python3-pip
sudo pip3 -v install docker-compose

After a fresh install, firmware and distro upgrade, docker-compose seemed to take quite a while to finish. Added the -v verbose flag to make sure the install wasn't stuck.


Ah, thanks, man! I am glad it worked!


On Ubuntu 20.04 raspberrypi, this also works:

apt install --yes python3-paramiko
pip3 install docker-compose

Ah, thanks! ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿฝ ๐Ÿ™‚


This works on

PRETTY_NAME="Raspbian GNU/Linux 10 (buster)"


It seems a problem with the docker python client. After running docker-compose for the first time. You get the error ImportError: No module named ssl_match_hostname on init

The fix is cp -r /usr/local/lib/python2.7/dist-packages/backports/ssl_match_hostname/ /usr/lib/python2.7/dist-packages/backports


this might be a better option.

sudo apt-get remove python-configparser

After removing configparser docker-compose starts as expected.
I removed after installing compose via pip but noted an error related to configparser at end of install so this might be better run after dependencies but before compose. This part I haven't tried


Hmm, this is weird did you try to install it with Python 3?

Python 2 support ends next year.

Update, in the next few weeks, I'll rewrite this and try again on a fresh installation that should help me find the errors.


I was just using the standard installers as listed in your instructions (which are great BTW). Everything from first glance still uses Python2.

Yeah, you are correct, I just re-read my own post and yep everything seems to be using Python 3 ๐Ÿ˜…

Please disregard my last comment.

I'll update the post and fix the remaining issues soon, that should help with my confusion.

Just out of curiosity how did you manage to fix the problem? By copying the dependency? I haven't seen this solution ever before.

This is specific to ARM Docker deployments. The Ubuntu deployments in the Cloud don't seem to have this issue.

I found people having the similar issue after installing docker-compose - github.com/docker/docker-py/issues...


Tested today.
Raspberry pi 3B+ with Raspbian Buster Lite

I had to switch to python3/pip3 to install docker compose.
The message just before the error was:
setuptools requires Python '>=3.5' but the running Python is 2.7.16

1 = make python3 the default python => search google
2 = sudo apt-get install -y python3-pip "3" !!!
3 = sudo pip3 install docker-compose "3" !!!


Yep, got this error too and that indeed was the solution. The strange part is that it did worked, till about one or two weeks ago. Now I use this:

$ curl -sSL get.docker.com | sh
$ sudo usermod -aG docker pi
$ sudo apt-get install libffi-dev libssl-dev
$ sudo apt-get install -y python3 python3-pip
$ sudo apt-get remove python-configparser (apparently this isn't installed by using my commands on a clean install)
$ sudo pip3 install docker-compose


Updated the post to reflect this. Thanks!


If you amend step 2 to include

newgrp docker

then you don't need to reboot or use 'sudo docker' while you're in that shell.

Also, if you amend step 4 to include '-y' in your 'apt-get install' lines it is more friendly to copy/paste. Everybody is going to answer 'y to the installation question anyway.


Thanks for this, but I also had to install libssl-dev before the final sudo pip install docker-compose worked


I'll update the post to include this as well! Thanks! ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿฝ


Boom! It's done. Anything more? ๐Ÿ˜‡


Thx for this post, Rohan! One possible thing to add - when I ran the command: sudo pip install docker-compose on my Raspberry Pi 4 running Ubuntu 19.10, I got the error:

ERROR: Cannot uninstall 'PyYAML'. It is a distutils installed project and thus we cannot accurately determine which files belong to it which would lead to only a partial uninstall.

After reading this thread - stackoverflow.com/questions/499115... - I was able to install docker-compose by adding the ignore-installed flag like this:

sudo pip install docker-compose --ignore-installed PyYAML

Note that during the install, I did see these 2 errors:
ERROR: launchpadlib 1.10.7 requires testresources, which is not installed.
ERROR: docker-compose 1.25.0 has requirement PyYAML<5,>=3.10, but you'll have pyyaml 5.1.2 which is incompatible.

but that didn't stop docker-compose from installing successfully, and now I have:

ubuntu@ubuntu:~$ docker-compose --version
docker-compose version 1.25.0, build b42d419

and I just manually ran sudo pip install testresources after. Hope this helps!


Oh, on Ubuntu 19?

I had not thought it would work with that. Cool that you manage to get it working!


I just tested everything on a fresh Raspbian Buster build on a Raspberry Pi 3 B+ and it indeed needed a few changes.

sudo apt-get remove python-configparser

Thanks to @dbrosy and @vegasbrianc for pointing it out.


Worked on first try as of March 2020 Rasp Buster Lite, thank you!

Also, the build step for bdist_wheel to run setup.py takes a pi 3 b+ like 12 minutes, so know that it's not broken if that's taking a while. CPU gets pretty hot, recommend rebooting and letting it cool for a while.


Out of curiosity, why did you choose to install from scratch, rather than using a Raspberry Pi image from Hypriot?
What are the pros / cons?
What is more reliable / maintainable?

You can read something about Hyrpiot OS on blog.hypriot.com/getting-started-w...


Huh? Honestly. I instinctively googled "how to install docker on the Raspberry Pi" and most of the other guides mentioned some iteration of the steps in this article but many of them didn't work.
So, when I thought of creating a simple guide that actually worked, those were the steps that I chose to follow.

But, if you know you want to run Docker right from the beginning, maybe Hyrpiot is a better option. :) I already had other projects running on the Pi and I was too lazy to reflash.


Hi, thanks for nice post. In case you want to get Raspi image with preinstalled docker in one step, check this out: device.farm. Beside the Linux image, you can also simply manage your docker over internet or access your container's services from internet.


Oh! Wow this is sooo good!!


Hi, thanks for you post.

I'm starting to work with Docker and Docker-compose but can't install the docker-compose.

My configuration is:

  • RaspberryPi 3+
  • Raspbian Full Stretch and Buster (tried both with a clean install)

The hello-world docker runs without errors. So docker is installed.

But with the last command "sudo pip install docker-compose" There is an error end I don't know how too solve it. Looked around at the internet and trying Stretch and Buster version of Raspbian. Can you help me.

setuptools requires Python '>=3.5' but the running Python is 2.7.16

Command "/usr/bin/python -m pip install --ignore-installed --no-user --prefix /tmp/pip-build-env-1XaNDC --no-warn-script-location --no-binary :none: --only-binary :none: -i https://pypi.org/simple --extra-index-url https://www.piwheels.org/simple -- setuptools>=40.8.0 wheel "cffi>=1.1; python_implementation != 'PyPy'"" failed with error code 1 in None

curl -sSL get.docker.com | sh , This curl will not work with ubuntu 20.04 server running on pi
$ sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade -y
$ curl -sSL get.docker.com | sh
$ sudo usermod -aG docker pi
$ sudo apt install libffi-dev libssl-dev python3 python3-pip


Oh, I had tested everything with Raspbian.

Btw, How is the Ubuntu support on the RPi? Is it worth moving to Ubuntu from Raspbian? ๐Ÿค”


this is ubuntu server version for RPi, yea definitely worth it more stable more support and I have attached some images also attached my pi server image with some text blurred.


Thx for your article.
I wasted a full day try to get docker-compose up and running on my Pi4 while it took me only few minutes to get it works on Ubuntu VM.
In Ubuntu VM, "apt-get install docker-compose" did the job but some how for Pi it did not :\


Tested on

Model: Raspberry Pi 4 Model B 4GBRAM
MicroSD: Sandisk 32GB
OS: Raspbian Buster with desktop
Flashed OS App: Balena Etcher

Thank you Rohan


Hi , I'm shepherd ,
I used the "2019-09-26-raspbian-buster-full.img" raspberry pie image(3B+).When I used this image last year, I could install docker normally.Today, I reinstalled the system and encountered a problem while installing docker.
1.sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade
No problem
2.curl -fsSL get.docker.com -o get-docker.sh
No problem
3.sudo sh get-docker.sh
error:Essential packages were removed and -y was used without --allow-remove-essential.
I've updated Python to 3.6;
The problem has always been. I don't know what happened
I hope you can help me.


Hmm, so this is what I can do. This weekend, I'll try the Docker installation on a fresh newest version of Raspbian and see if it's still working out of the box.

That should help you ๐Ÿค”


My docker-compose step fails as follows;
Exception: Version mismatch: this is the 'cffi' package version 1.13.2, located in '/tmp/pip-build-mJ6FCD/pynacl/cffi-1.13.2-py2.7-linux-armv7l.egg/cffi/api.pyc'. When we import the top-level '_cffi_backend' extension module, we get version 1.9.1, located in '/usr/lib/python2.7/dist-packages/_cffi_backend.arm-linux-gnueabihf.so'. The two versions should be equal; check your installation.

Any help appreciated.


sudo pip3 install cffi==1.13.2 solved but there are other dependencies.


also install python-dev / python3-dev


Ah, I had this already installed, so missed it. ๐Ÿ˜…


Hi Rohan,

after step 1 i got the message back: status = stable.
When i enter step 2 ... i got back: usermod: group 'docker' doesnt exist

Please can you help me?


Hey Rob,

That is super weird. I just tried this with a fresh installation and I did not have any issues.

Does rebooting after installing docker help?


Finally a solution that works for me after looking everywhere. Thank you, sir!


Great tutorial!

I actually have a short video on how to do that as well:



Thanks for this hint! I literally tried each and every approach I found. Installing the dependencies fixed my issue with docker-compose 1.25 on Raspberry Pi 4 and Ubuntu Server on it!


Getting this error after installing on Rpi. Any idea.

Cannot connect to the Docker daemon at unix:///var/run/docker.sock. Is the docker daemon running?


sudo should never be used with pip. Please read the reasoning here: