OpenShift can build Docker images from your source code, deploy them, and manage their lifecycle. To enable this, OpenShift provides an internal, integrated Docker registry that can be deployed in your OpenShift environment to locally manage images.

Deploying the Registry

To deploy the integrated Docker registry, use the oadm registry command as a user with cluster administrator privileges. For example:

$ oadm registry --config=/etc/origin/master/admin.kubeconfig \(1)
    --credentials=/etc/origin/master/openshift-registry.kubeconfig \(2)
    --images='registry.access.redhat.com/openshift3/ose-${component}:${version}' (3)
1 --config is the path to the CLI configuration file for the cluster administrator.
2 --credentials is the path to the CLI configuration file for the openshift-registry.
3 Required to pull the correct image for OpenShift Enterprise.

This creates a service and a deployment configuration, both called docker-registry. Once deployed successfully, a pod is created with a name similar to docker-registry-1-cpty9.

To see a full list of options that you can specify when creating the registry:

$ oadm registry --help

Storage for the Registry

The registry stores Docker images and metadata. If you simply deploy a pod with the registry, it uses an ephemeral volume that is destroyed if the pod exits. Any images anyone has built or pushed into the registry would disappear.

Production Use

For production use, attach a remote volume or define and use the persistent storage method of your choice.

For example, to use an existing persistent volume claim:

$ oc volume deploymentconfigs/docker-registry --add --name=registry-storage -t pvc \
     --claim-name=<pvc_name> --overwrite

Or, to attach an existing NFS volume to the registry:

$ oc volume deploymentconfigs/docker-registry \
     --add --overwrite --name=registry-storage --mount-path=/registry \
     --source='{"nfs": { "server": "<fqdn>", "path": "/path/to/export"}}'

See Known Issues if using a scaled registry with a shared NFS volume.

Non-Production Use

For non-production use, you can use the --mount-host=<path> option to specify a directory for the registry to use for persistent storage. The registry volume is then created as a host-mount at the specified <path>.

The --mount-host option mounts a directory from the node on which the registry container lives. If you scale up the docker-registry deployment configuration, it is possible that your registry pods and containers will run on different nodes, which can result in two or more registry containers, each with its own local storage. This will lead to unpredictable behavior, as subsequent requests to pull the same image repeatedly may not always succeed, depending on which container the request ultimately goes to.

The --mount-host option requires that the registry container run in privileged mode. This is automatically enabled when you specify --mount-host. However, not all pods are allowed to run privileged containers by default. If you still want to use this option, create the registry and specify that it use the registry service account that was created during installation:

$ oadm registry --service-account=registry \
    --config=/etc/origin/master/admin.kubeconfig \
    --credentials=/etc/origin/master/openshift-registry.kubeconfig \
    --images='registry.access.redhat.com/openshift3/ose-${component}:${version}' \

The Docker registry pod runs as user 1001. This user must be able to write to the host directory. You may need to change directory ownership to user ID 1001 with this command:

$ sudo chown 1001:root <path>

Maintaining the Registry IP Address

OpenShift refers to the integrated registry by its service IP address, so if you decide to delete and recreate the docker-registry service, you can ensure a completely transparent transition by arranging to re-use the old IP address in the new service. If a new IP address cannot be avoided, you can minimize cluster disruption by rebooting only the masters.

Re-using the Address

To re-use the IP address, you must save the IP address of the old docker-registry service prior to deleting it, and arrange to replace the newly assigned IP address with the saved one in the new docker-registry service.

  1. Make a note of the ClusterIP for the service:

    $ oc get svc/docker-registry -o yaml | grep clusterIP:
  2. Delete the service:

    $ oc delete svc/docker-registry dc/docker-registry
  3. Create the registry definition in registry.yaml, replacing <options> with, for example, those used in step 3 of the instructions in the Non-Production Use section:

    $ oadm registry <options> -o yaml > registry.yaml
  4. Edit registry.yaml, find the Service there, and change its ClusterIP to the address noted in step 1.

  5. Create the registry using the modified registry.yaml:

    $ oc create -f registry.yaml
Rebooting the Masters

If you are unable to re-use the IP address, any operation that uses a pull specification that includes the old IP address will fail. To minimize cluster disruption, you must reboot the masters:

# systemctl restart atomic-openshift-master

This ensures that the old registry URL, which includes the old IP address, is cleared from the cache.

We recommend against rebooting the entire cluster because that incurs unnecessary downtime for pods and does not actually clear the cache.

Viewing Logs

To view the logs for the Docker registry, run the oc logs indicating the desired pod:

$ oc logs docker-registry-1-da73t
2015-05-01T19:48:36.300593110Z time="2015-05-01T19:48:36Z" level=info msg="version=v2.0.0+unknown"
2015-05-01T19:48:36.303294724Z time="2015-05-01T19:48:36Z" level=info msg="redis not configured" instance.id=9ed6c43d-23ee-453f-9a4b-031fea646002
2015-05-01T19:48:36.303422845Z time="2015-05-01T19:48:36Z" level=info msg="using inmemory layerinfo cache" instance.id=9ed6c43d-23ee-453f-9a4b-031fea646002
2015-05-01T19:48:36.303433991Z time="2015-05-01T19:48:36Z" level=info msg="Using OpenShift Auth handler"
2015-05-01T19:48:36.303439084Z time="2015-05-01T19:48:36Z" level=info msg="listening on :5000" instance.id=9ed6c43d-23ee-453f-9a4b-031fea646002

File Storage

Tag and image metadata is stored in OpenShift, but the registry stores layer and signature data in a volume that is mounted into the registry container at /registry. As oc exec does not work on privileged containers, to view a registry’s contents you must manually SSH into the node housing the registry pod’s container, then run docker exec on the container itself:

  1. List the current pods to find the pod name of your Docker registry:

    # oc get pods

    Then, use oc describe to find the host name for the node running the container:

    # oc describe pod <pod_name>
  2. Log into the desired node:

    # ssh node.example.com
  3. List the running containers on the node host and identify the container ID for the Docker registry:

    # docker ps | grep ose-docker-registry
  4. List the registry contents using the docker exec command:

    # docker exec -it 4c01db0b339c find /registry
    /registry/docker/registry/v2/blobs (1)
    /registry/docker/registry/v2/blobs/sha256/ed/ede17b139a271d6b1331ca3d83c648c24f92cece5f89d95ac6c34ce751111810/data (2)
    /registry/docker/registry/v2/repositories (3)
    /registry/docker/registry/v2/repositories/p1/pause (4)
    /registry/docker/registry/v2/repositories/p1/pause/_manifests/revisions/sha256/e9a2ac6418981897b399d3709f1b4a6d2723cd38a4909215ce2752a5c068b1cf/signatures (5)
    /registry/docker/registry/v2/repositories/p1/pause/_manifests/revisions/sha256/e9a2ac6418981897b399d3709f1b4a6d2723cd38a4909215ce2752a5c068b1cf/signatures/sha256/ede17b139a271d6b1331ca3d83c648c24f92cece5f89d95ac6c34ce751111810/link (6)
    /registry/docker/registry/v2/repositories/p1/pause/_uploads (7)
    /registry/docker/registry/v2/repositories/p1/pause/_layers (8)
    /registry/docker/registry/v2/repositories/p1/pause/_layers/sha256/a3ed95caeb02ffe68cdd9fd84406680ae93d633cb16422d00e8a7c22955b46d4/link (9)
    1 This directory stores all layers and signatures as blobs.
    2 This file contains the blob’s contents.
    3 This directory stores all the image repositories.
    4 This directory is for a single image repository p1/pause.
    5 This directory contains signatures for a particular image manifest revision.
    6 This file contains a reference back to a blob (which contains the signature data).
    7 This directory contains any layers that are currently being uploaded and staged for the given repository.
    8 This directory contains links to all the layers this repository references.
    9 This file contains a reference to a specific layer that has been linked into this repository via an image.

Accessing the Registry Directly

For advanced usage, you can access the registry directly to invoke docker commands. This allows you to push images to or pull them from the integrated registry directly using operations like docker push or docker pull. To do so, you must be logged in to the registry using the docker login command. The operations you can perform depend on your user permissions, as described in the following sections.

User Prerequisites

To access the registry directly, the user that you use must satisfy the following, depending on your intended usage:

  • For any direct access, you must have a regular user, if one does not already exist, for your preferred identity provider. A regular user can generate an access token required for logging in to the registry. System users, such as system:admin, cannot obtain access tokens and, therefore, cannot access the registry directly.

    For example, if you are using HTPASSWD authentication, you can create one using the following command:

    # htpasswd /etc/origin/openshift-htpasswd <user_name>
  • The user must have the system:registry role. To add this role:

    # oadm policy add-role-to-user system:registry <user_name>
  • Have the admin role for the project associated with the Docker operation. For example, if accessing images in the global openshift project:

     $ oadm policy add-role-to-user admin <user_name> -n openshift
  • For writing or pushing images, for example when using the docker push command, the user must have the system:image-builder role. To add this role:

    $ oadm policy add-role-to-user system:image-builder <user_name>

For more information on user permissions, see Managing Role Bindings.

Logging in to the Registry

Ensure your user satisfies the prerequisites for accessing the registry directly.

To log in to the registry directly:

  1. Ensure you are logged in to OpenShift as a regular user:

    $ oc login
  2. Get your access token:

    $ oc whoami -t
  3. Log in to the Docker registry:

    $ docker login -u <username> -e <any_email_address> \
        -p <token_value> <registry_ip>:<port>

Pushing and Pulling Images

After logging in to the registry, you can perform docker pull and docker push operations against your registry.

You can pull arbitrary images, but if you have the system:registry role added, you can only push images to the registry in your project.

In the following examples, we use:











omitted (defaults to latest)

  1. Pull an arbitrary image:

    $ docker pull docker.io/busybox
  2. Tag the new image with the form <registry_ip>:<port>/<project>/<image>. The project name must appear in this pull specification for OpenShift to correctly place and later access the image in the registry.

    $ docker tag docker.io/busybox

    Your regular user must have the system:image-builder role for the specified project, which allows the user to write or push an image. Otherwise, the docker push in the next step will fail. To test, you can create a new project to push the busybox image.

  3. Push the newly-tagged image to your registry:

    $ docker push
    cf2616975b4a: Image successfully pushed
    Digest: sha256:3662dd821983bc4326bee12caec61367e7fb6f6a3ee547cbaff98f77403cab55

Securing the Registry

Optionally, you can secure the registry so that it serves traffic via TLS:

  1. Deploy the registry.

  2. Fetch the service IP and port of the registry:

    $ oc get svc/docker-registry
    NAME              LABELS                                    SELECTOR                  IP(S)            PORT(S)
    docker-registry   docker-registry=default                   docker-registry=default   5000/TCP
  3. You can use an existing server certificate, or create a key and server certificate valid for specified IPs and host names, signed by a specified CA. To create a server certificate for the registry service IP and the docker-registry.default.svc.cluster.local host name:

    $ oadm ca create-server-cert \
        --signer-cert=/etc/origin/master/ca.crt \
        --signer-key=/etc/origin/master/ca.key \
        --signer-serial=/etc/origin/master/ca.serial.txt \
        --hostnames='docker-registry.default.svc.cluster.local,' \
        --cert=/etc/secrets/registry.crt \
  4. Create the secret for the registry certificates:

    $ oc secrets new registry-secret \
        /etc/secrets/registry.crt \
  5. Add the secret to the registry pod’s service accounts (including the default service account):

    $ oc secrets add serviceaccounts/registry secrets/registry-secret
    $ oc secrets add serviceaccounts/default  secrets/registry-secret
  6. Add the secret volume to the registry deployment configuration:

    $ oc volume dc/docker-registry --add --type=secret \
        --secret-name=registry-secret -m /etc/secrets
  7. Enable TLS by adding the following environment variables to the registry deployment configuration:

    $ oc env dc/docker-registry \
        REGISTRY_HTTP_TLS_CERTIFICATE=/etc/secrets/registry.crt \

    See more details on overriding registry options.

  8. Update the scheme used for the registry’s liveness probe from HTTP to HTTPS:

    $ oc patch dc/docker-registry --api-version=v1 -p '{"spec": {"template": {"spec": {"containers":[{
        "livenessProbe":  {"httpGet": {"scheme":"HTTPS"}}
  9. Validate the registry is running in TLS mode. Wait until the docker-registry pod status changes to Running and verify the Docker logs for the registry container. You should find an entry for listening on :5000, tls.

    $ oc get pods
    POD                       IP           CONTAINER(S)   IMAGE(S)                                  HOST                           LABELS                                                                                  STATUS    CREATED    MESSAGE
    docker-registry-1-da73t                                                            openshiftdev.local/   deployment=docker-registry-4,deploymentconfig=docker-registry,docker-registry=default   Running   38 hours
    $ oc log docker-registry-1-da73t | grep tls
    time="2015-05-27T05:05:53Z" level=info msg="listening on :5000, tls" instance.id=deeba528-c478-41f5-b751-dc48e4935fc2
  10. Copy the CA certificate to the Docker certificates directory. This must be done on all nodes in the cluster:

    $ dcertsdir=/etc/docker/certs.d
    $ destdir_addr=$dcertsdir/
    $ destdir_name=$dcertsdir/docker-registry.default.svc.cluster.local:5000
    $ sudo mkdir -p $destdir_addr $destdir_name
    $ sudo cp ca.crt $destdir_addr    (1)
    $ sudo cp ca.crt $destdir_name
    1 The ca.crt file is a copy of /etc/origin/master/ca.crt on the master.
  11. Remove the --insecure-registry option only for this particular registry in the /etc/sysconfig/docker file. Then, reload the daemon and restart the docker service to reflect this configuration change:

    $ sudo systemctl daemon-reload
    $ sudo systemctl restart docker
  12. Validate the docker client connection. Running docker push to the registry or docker pull from the registry should succeed. Make sure you have logged into the registry.

    $ docker tag|push <registry/image> <internal_registry/project/image>

    For example:

    $ docker pull busybox
    $ docker tag docker.io/busybox
    $ docker push
    cf2616975b4a: Image successfully pushed
    Digest: sha256:3662dd821983bc4326bee12caec61367e7fb6f6a3ee547cbaff98f77403cab55

Advanced: Overriding the Registry Configuration

You can override the integrated registry’s default configuration, found by default at /config.yml in a running registry’s container, with your own custom configuration. See the upstream registry documentation’s Registry Configuration Reference for the full list of available options.

To enable managing the registry configuration file directly, it is recommended that the configuration file be mounted as a secret volume:

  1. Deploy the registry.

  2. Edit the registry configuration file locally as needed. The initial YAML file deployed on the registry is provided below:

    version: 0.1
      level: debug
      addr: :5000
        layerinfo: inmemory
        rootdirectory: /registry
        enabled: true
        realm: openshift
        - name: openshift
            pullthrough: true

    See Registry Configuration Reference for more options.

  3. Create a new secret called registry-config from your custom registry configuration file you edited locally:

    $ oc secrets new registry-config config.yml=</path/to/custom/registry/config.yml>
  4. Add the registry-config secret as a volume to the registry’s deployment configuration to mount the custom configuration file at /etc/docker/registry/:

    $ oc volume dc/docker-registry --add --type=secret \
        --secret-name=registry-config -m /etc/docker/registry/
  5. Update the registry to reference the configuration path from the previous step by adding the following environment variable to the registry’s deployment configuration:

    $ oc env dc/docker-registry \

This may be performed as an iterative process to achieve the desired configuration. For example, during troubleshooting, the configuration may be temporarily updated to put it in debug mode.

To update an existing configuration:

This procedure will overwrite the currently deployed registry configuration.

  1. Edit the local registry configuration file, config.yml.

  2. Delete the registry-config secret:

    $ oc delete secret registry-config
  3. Recreate the secret to reference the updated configuration file the first step:

    $ oc secrets new registry-config config.yml=</path/to/custom/registry/config.yml>
  4. Redeploy the registry to read the updated configuration:

    $ oc deploy docker-registry --latest

It is recommended that configuration files be maintained in a source control repository.

Whitelisting Docker Registries

You can specify a whitelist of docker registries, allowing you to curate a set of images and templates that are available for download by OpenShift users. This curated set can be placed in one or more docker registries, and then added to the whitelist. When using a whitelist, only the specified registries are accessible within OpenShift, and all other registries are denied access by default.

To configure a whitelist:

  1. Edit the /etc/sysconfig/docker file to block all registries:


    You may need to uncomment the BLOCK_REGISTRY line.

  2. In the same file, add registries to which you want to allow access:

    ADD_REGISTRY='--add-registry=<registry1> --add-registry=<registry2>'
    Example 1. Allowing Access to Registries

    This example would restrict access to images available on the Red Hat Customer Portal.

Once the whitelist is configured, if a user tries to pull from a docker registry that is not on the whitelist, they will receive an error message stating that this registry is not allowed.

Exposing the Registry

To expose your internal registry externally, it is recommended that you run a secure registry. To expose the registry you must first have deployed a router.

  1. Deploy the registry.

  2. Secure the registry.

  3. Deploy a router.

  4. Create your passthrough route with oc create -f <filename>.json. The passthrough route will point to the registry service that you have created.

    apiVersion: v1
    kind: Route
      name: registry
      host: <host> (1)
        kind: Service
        name: docker-registry (2)
        termination: passthrough (3)
    1 The host for your route. You must be able to resolve this name externally via DNS to the router’s IP address.
    2 The service name for your registry.
    3 Specify this route as a passthrough route.

    Passthrough is currently the only type of route supported for exposing the secure registry.

  5. Next, you must trust the certificates being used for the registry on your host system. The certificates referenced were created when you secured your registry.

    $ sudo mkdir -p /etc/docker/certs.d/<host>
    $ sudo cp <ca certificate file> /etc/docker/certs.d/<host>
    $ sudo systemctl restart docker
  6. Log in to the registry using the information from securing the registry. However, this time point to the host name used in the route rather than your service IP. You should now be able to tag and push images using the route host.

    $ oc get imagestreams -n test
    $ docker pull busybox
    $ docker tag busybox <host>/test/busybox
    $ docker push <host>/test/busybox
    The push refers to a repository [<host>/test/busybox] (len: 1)
    8c2e06607696: Image already exists
    6ce2e90b0bc7: Image successfully pushed
    cf2616975b4a: Image successfully pushed
    Digest: sha256:6c7e676d76921031532d7d9c0394d0da7c2906f4cb4c049904c4031147d8ca31
    $ docker pull <host>/test/busybox
    latest: Pulling from <host>/test/busybox
    cf2616975b4a: Already exists
    6ce2e90b0bc7: Already exists
    8c2e06607696: Already exists
    Digest: sha256:6c7e676d76921031532d7d9c0394d0da7c2906f4cb4c049904c4031147d8ca31
    Status: Image is up to date for <host>/test/busybox:latest
    $ oc get imagestreams -n test
    NAME      DOCKER REPO                       TAGS      UPDATED
    busybox   latest    2 seconds ago

    Your image streams will have the IP address and port of the registry service, not the route name and port. See oc get imagestreams for details.

    In the <host>/test/busybox example above, test refers to the project name.

Known Issues

The following are the known issues when deploying or using the integrated registry.

Image Push Errors with Scaled Registry Using Shared NFS Volume

When using a scaled registry with a shared NFS volume, you may see one of the following errors during the push of an image:

  • digest invalid: provided digest did not match uploaded content

  • blob upload unknown

  • blob upload invalid

These errors are returned by an internal registry service when Docker attempts to push the image. Its cause originates in the synchronization of file attributes across nodes. Factors such as NFS client side caching, network latency, and layer size can all contribute to potential errors that might occur when pushing an image using the default round-robin load balancing configuration.

You can perform the following steps to minimize the probability of such a failure:

  1. Ensure that the sessionAffinity of your docker-registry service is set to ClientIP:

    $ oc get svc/docker-registry --template='{{.spec.sessionAffinity}}'

    This should return ClientIP, which is the default in recent OpenShift Enterprise versions. If not, change it:

    $ oc get -o yaml svc/docker-registry | \
          sed 's/\(sessionAffinity:\s*\).*/\1ClientIP/' | \
          oc replace -f -
  2. Ensure that the NFS export line of your registry volume on your NFS server has the no_wdelay options listed. See Export Settings in the Persistent Storage Using NFS topic for details.

What’s Next?

After you have a registry deployed, you can: