[Chicago-talk] When to Dockerize a perl program

Sean Blanton sean at blanton.com
Mon Sep 5 10:38:28 PDT 2022

I would say almost every Perl program. It certainly solves the problem of
managing your environment. It can run anywhere and you don't care what's
installed or upgraded on the server.

I'm unfortunately now using the lesser and boring p- language, but the same
thing holds.  We have one bitbucket/Gitlab repo and it holds all the common
code and we launch the same docker image with different start commands to
run different programs as different services.  This had the benefit of not
having to upgrade all your services on a new release.

Docker was a learning experience for me for sure, but overtime I found many
optimizations to iterate quickly. If you are completely not paying
attention (newbie), you could end up with a huge docker image that could be
unwieldy. I've dabbled in the admin side as well - also some learning
there, as a lot of the docker storage is under /var, which like /tmp, users
can abuse and max out (but volumes can be created).  The Alpine Linux
distribution is popular to keep the image size down.


Sean Blanton
sean at blanton.com

On Mon, Sep 5, 2022 at 8:58 AM Richard Reina <richard at rushlogistics.com>

> On Sep 4, 2022, at 6:19 PM, Alan Mead <amead at alanmead.org> wrote:
> I was curious to see what responses you got. The little I understand about
> docker, it makes it easier for a sysadmin to deploy your application
> because you have set up the environment that you need. From that, I assume
> that Docker is great for sysadmins but maybe not all that compelling for
> the private use of programmers unless it solves a problem for you.
> Yes and I am also the system admin. Accordingly, if turning my app into an
> image is something that could allow me to get it up and running on a
> machine with no compromises in five minutes as opposed to a couple of hours
> I would seriously consider it, especially if making a Docker image does not
> require a great deal of work. Right now I only have to occasionally, once a
> year or so, install in on a machine in my office so it not too much hassle—
> but five minutes vs. a couple hours is worth considering.
> I am surprised that your script takes two hours to run. Does that include
> some long compilations?
> The program does not require two hours it only takes about 20 minutes and
> most of that time it’s downloading and installing packages and perk
> modules. The rest of the time is me mucking with the machine to get
> everything working right— my install script only does about 90% of the work.
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