This question briefly touches on this subject: Are questions on Docker suitable for ServerFault?

But none of the answers really address the general question comprehensively about what types of docker questions are on topic and two sound conflicting.

I have a fair bit of work with Docker right now. I am never sure if SF is the right place (and know you, ah, protect your site scope with a fervor) - it might be nice to have a more comprehensive listing for what types of Docker questions are on topic.

Topics like:

  • Creation of docker containers
  • Networking of docker containers
  • Orchestration of docker container networks
  • Dockerfiles/docker-compose
  • Docker command line parameters

They all seem to me like they would fit the scope here but it would be nice to have a feeling for what types of topics fit the scope, with respect to Docker.

My question which is prompting this is basically how to most effectively mount libfaketime into a precreated Docker container and manipulate the time in the container.


2 Answers 2


There isn't a hard-and-fast rule, and as I mentioned when a similar question arose on Meta Stack Overflow, topic overlap is possible and permitted.

That said, the very rough boundary that I usually look at is:

  • If it happens inside the container, it is probably not for Server Fault.
  • If it happens outside the container, it probably is something for Server Fault.

Some examples:

  • Deploying the hardware and storage which a production Docker uses most likely belongs here. For instance, setting up Docker to store volumes on an NFS server.
  • Connecting Docker to a production network probably belongs here. For instance, bridging Docker to a physical switch; configuring IP address ranges, etc.
  • Fetching metadata about the Docker environment (e.g. the IP address of a related container) from within your program running in a container most likely belongs on Stack Overflow.
  • Learning how various basic Linux commands work is best asked on Super User or Unix & Linux. (And U&L is probably where I would recommend you take your specific question first, as it doesn't seem to be about programming or Docker-specific.)
  • Architecting the environment that a container provides to the application it runs is an area of overlap. It's not really programming, but programmers are often (usually wrongly) expected to do it. It's closer to operations, and has many operations issues programmers are ill-equipped to handle, but administrators often don't or aren't allowed to participate (which is also wrong). Worse, Docker's design encourages this. But that's another discussion... For topicality, as I said before, make your best guess and bring your hazmat suits.

My personal feeling is that docker is a fantastic development tool, but it has no place in production. We have a close reason that says

Questions about development, testing and development tools may be asked on Stack Overflow

So on that basis I don't expect to find most docker questions on-topic for SF. I accept that this may not be a majority viewpoint, but it's mine, and it will govern my close-voting practices in this regard.

  • What I really want to do is eliminate Docker and replace it with something sensible, but until then we're kind of stuck with it. Mar 17, 2016 at 10:20
  • 1
    IMO one of the key advantages of docker is that you can automate the dev->test->prod deployment. As such, I think we'll increasingly see it in prod, for all the reasons we see virtual machines in prod.
    – Sobrique
    Mar 21, 2016 at 11:27
  • Yes, but only by using containerisation in production. It's not a price I'm willing to pay for all but a very few prod environments, but I agree with you that many others seem to be.
    – MadHatter
    Mar 21, 2016 at 11:53
  • About Docker having "no place in production", I realize that reply is from 2016 (as are the comments in reply to it), so it seems quite dated and should no longer holds true with all the advancements in Docker itself, and orchestration solutions like Kubernetes, Swarm, Amazon ECS, and so on. So I'd be curious if anyone seeing this in 2019 would still hold to that conclusion. I suppose it's worthy of its own question, but I will leave this as much as a rhetorical question, so that future readers finding this don't think it would be a universally held one still. Jul 30, 2019 at 18:43

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .