Build your own Earthly CI Image
This guide is intended to help you create your own Docker image with Earthly inside it for your containerized CI workflows.
There are two ways to build a containerized CI image with Earthly:
- Extending the
earthly/earthlyimage with an external runner/agent
- Adding Earthly to an existing image
This guide will cover both approaches to constructing your image.
This is the recommended approach when adopting Earthly into your containerized CI. Start by basing your custom image on ours:
RUN ... # Add your agent, certificates, tools...
When extending our image, be sure to pin to a specific version to avoid accidental future breakage as
earthly/earthlyimage is Alpine Linux based. To add tools to the image, you can use
apk add --no-cache my-cool-tool
If you are adding a tool from outside the Alpine Linux repositories, test it to ensure it is compatible. Alpine uses
musl, which can create incompatibilities with some software.
Also, you should embed any configuration that your Earthly image might need (to avoid having it in your build scripts, or mounted from a host somewhere). You can do this in-line with the
This section will cover adding Earthly to an existing image when:
- Docker-In-Docker is configured for the base image
- Earthly will be connecting to a remote
While it is possible to configure a locally-ran
earthly/buildkitdinstance within an image (it's how
earthly/earthlyworks), the steps and tweaks are beyond the scope of this guide.
In this setup, Earthly will be allowed to manage an instance of its
earthly/buildkitddaemon over a live Docker socket.
To enable this, simply follow the installation instructions within your Dockerfile/Earthfile as you would on any other host. An example of installing this can be found below.
RUN wget https://github.com/earthly/earthly/releases/download/v0.7.7/earthly-linux-amd64 -O /usr/local/bin/earthly && \
chmod +x /usr/local/bin/earthly && \
As with the Docker containers, be sure to pin the version in the download URL to avoid any accidental future breakage. Assuming Docker is also installed and available, you should be able to invoke Earthly without any additional configuration.
When connecting to a remote daemon, follow the Docker-In-Docker installation instructions above to get the binary. Then you'll need to issue a few
earthly configcommands to ensure the container is set up to automatically use the remote daemon. It might look something like this:
RUN earthly config global.buildkit_host buildkit_host: 'tcp://myhost:8372'
When cgroups v2 is detected by the
earthly/earthlyimage's default entrypoint, it moves it's process under an isolated cgroup. If a different entrypoint is used (i.e. a custom user supplied script), the root process must be moved into a separate cgroup, for example:
if [ -f "/sys/fs/cgroup/cgroup.controllers" ]; then
echo "detected cgroups v2; moving pid $$ to subgroup"
# move the process under a new cgroup to prevent buildkitd/entrypoint.sh
# from getting a "sh: write error: Resource busy" error while enabling controllers
# via echo +pids > /sys/fs/cgroup/cgroup.subtree_control
mkdir -p /sys/fs/cgroup/my-entrypoint
echo "$$" > /sys/fs/cgroup/my-entrypoint/cgroup.procs
If this step is not performed before the buildkitd process starts up, buildkitd will be unable to initialize it's own cgroup (due to the container's root cgroup already having processes directly under it), and will fail with the error:
sh: write error: Resource busy.
When running the built image in your CI of choice, if you're not using a remote daemon, Earthly will start Buildkit within the same container. In this case, it is important to ensure that the directory used by Buildkit to cache the builds is mounted as a Docker volume. Failing to do so may result in excessive disk usage, slow builds, or Earthly not functioning properly.
We strongly recommend using a Docker volume for mounting
/tmp/earthly. If you do not, Buildkit can consume excessive disk space, operate very slowly, or it might not function correctly.
In some environments, not mounting
/tmp/earthlyas a Docker volume results in the following error:
--> WITH DOCKER RUN --privileged ...
rm: can't remove '/var/earthly/dind/...': Resource busy
In EKS, users reported that mounting an EBS volume, instead of a Kubernetes
This part of our documentation needs improvement. If you have a Kubernetes-based setup, please let us know how you have mounted
WITH DOCKERworked well for you.