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I have not been able to find a way to up/down just one container in a docker-compose.yml file. I can off-course start and stop a single container, but I cannot make changes to a containers configuration between restarts (environment variables, mount points etc.)

What am I missing here? What is the best practice in this case?

1

I had this need recently and solved it by having a separate docker-compose-production.yml file to deal with tweaks. Then remember to launch with docker-compose -f docker-compose-production.yml...

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  • How does this work when it comes time to do docker-compose down? Wouldn't it bring down all the containers which have been brought up in all .yml files? – Jordan Morris Sep 15 '17 at 10:17
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    You can do docker-compose -f docker-compose-production.yml down – icarito Sep 17 '17 at 18:20
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    And where do you specify the container you would like to get up/down? -f is the selector of compose file, not container. – astrowalker Dec 11 '19 at 12:02
66

I found this to have the same affect as docker-compose down for a single service:

docker-compose rm -s -v yourService

docker-compose rm

Usage: rm [options] [SERVICE...]

Options:
-s, --stop Stop the containers, if required, before removing
-v Remove any anonymous volumes attached to containers

You can condense all the flags into a single - param: docker-compose rm -sv yourService

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    I think disposes the disk, btw – Jordan Morris Sep 5 '18 at 12:02
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    Could you please explain the flags, what they would do? – Semo May 22 '19 at 13:23
  • Jordan Morris, according to the manual -v disposes of anonymous volumes only when used with 'rm'. When used with 'down' it is stronger, also disposing of named volumes. The former is pretty safe. – Markus-Hermann Aug 7 '20 at 12:47
  • This should be the answer. docker-compose down only does all or nothing...this points to the service and stops it. – eco Feb 7 at 6:05
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I would suggest you check out this excellent thread on stackoverflow.com. The quick answer here to rebuild the single container and restart it is:

docker-compose up -d --build worker

This would be the ideal solution if, for example, your changes involved your Dockerfile and not just docker-compose.ymll

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  • I wish I'd seen this before. This is the correct answer!! In any case I've created my version, which will probably get triaged and deprecated with a step by step explanation. – eco Feb 7 at 9:04
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You can use

$ docker-compose -f docker-compose.yml up yourService

to start just yourService and all dependencies required by it.

So if yourService depends on mysql container, the above command would start both the containers.

0

There's no need to delete anything. To address the OP's question: You need to rebuild the image then use up to replace the container with the newly configured imaged.

IMPORTANT: notice that the new image will automatically be tagged with latest.

Step 1: Edit Docker file
Step 2: docker-compose build
Step 3: docker-compose up

The docker-compose up will leave all the unchanged containers alone and replace only the containers that have a newly created image.

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