Docker Containers BKMs


Follow the official guide for your OS or distro.

Change location of the images on the system

By default Docker stores images in /var/lib/docker, but that can be changed.

Create a new file called /etc/docker/daemon.json and put the following content:

  "data-root": "/path/to/data/root",
  "exec-root": "/path/to/exec/root"

Running Docker without sudo

Add your local user to docker group to be able to run docker commands without sudo.

Docker vs Podman

Docker and Podman are very similar tools, that allow you to manage and run container images. Unlike Docker, Podman runs without a daemon and allows you to run containers without root permissions. The command line syntax is mostly identical for Docker and Podman. Choose whatever is available on your system.

SYCL Containers overview

The following containers are publicly available for DPC++ compiler development:

  • contains basic environment setup for building DPC++ compiler from source.

  • contains everything from the base container + pre-installed Intel drivers. The image comes in three flavors/tags:

    • latest: Intel drivers are downloaded from release/tag and saved in dependencies.json. The drivers are tested/validated everytime we upgrade the driver.

    • devigc: Intel Graphics Compiler driver from github actions artifacts, other drivers are downloaded from release/tag and saved in dependencies.json.

    • unstable: Intel drivers are downloaded from release/latest. The drivers are installed as it is, not tested or validated.

  • has development kits installed for NVidia/AMD and can be used for building DPC++ compiler from source with all backends enabled or for end-to-end testing with HIP/CUDA on machines with corresponding GPUs available.

  • contains the latest successfully built nightly build of DPC++ compiler. The image comes in three flavors: with pre-installed Intel drivers (latest), without them (no-drivers) and with development kits installed (build).

Running Docker container interactively

The main application of Docker is containerizing services. But it also allows you to run containers interactively, so that you can use them as you would use a terminal or SSH session. The following command allows you to do that:

docker run --name <friendly_name> -it <image_name>[:<tag>] /bin/bash

This command will download an image if it does not exist locally. If you’ve downloaded an image previously, and you want to update it, use docker pull <image_name> command.

Persisting data

Persisting data with volumes

Docker container images are read-only. When container is destroyed, all its data is lost. To persist data when working with containers (i.e. when upgrading container version) one can use Docker volumes.

Creating a volume:

docker volume create <volume name>

Listing all volumes:

docker volume list

Mounting volume to the container:

docker run <options> -v <volume_name>:/path/inside/container <image_name> bash

Deleting a volume:

docker volume rm <image_name>

See official documentation for more info.

Passthrough a directory to a container

Use -v path/on/host:path/in/container argument for run command to passthrough a host directory or a file.

GPU passthrough


Add --device=/dev/dri argument to run command to passthrough you Intel GPU. Make sure you’re a member of video group to be able to access GPU.

In case the container is running under WSL, add --device=/dev/dxg -v /usr/lib/wsl:/usr/lib/wsl argument to run command. See official guide for more information.


Follow the official guide.


Follow these instructions.

Changing Docker user

By default all processes inside Docker run as root. Some LLVM or Clang tests expect your user to be anything but root. You can change the user by specifying -u <username or uid> option. All Docker containers come with user sycl created.

Managing downloaded Docker images

List local images:

docker image ls

Remove local image:

docker image rm <image_name_or_id>

Managing disk usage

See how much space is taken by docker:

docker system df

Cleaning unused data:

docker system prune

See official documentation for more info.

Building a Docker Container from scratch

Docker containers can be built with the following command:

docker build -f path/to/devops/containers/file.Dockerfile path/to/devops/

The ubuntu2204_preinstalled.Dockerfile script expects llvm_sycl.tar.xz file to be present in devops/ directory.

Containers other than base provide several configurable arguments, the most commonly used are base_image and base_tag, which specify the base Docker image and its tag. You can set additional arguments with --build-arg ARG=value argument.