Installing using Docker

Grafana is very easy to install and run using the official docker container.

$ docker run -d -p 3000:3000 grafana/grafana

Configuration

All options defined in conf/grafana.ini can be overridden using environment variables by using the syntax GF_<SectionName>_<KeyName>. For example:

$ docker run \
  -d \
  -p 3000:3000 \
  --name=grafana \
  -e "GF_SERVER_ROOT_URL=http://grafana.server.name" \
  -e "GF_SECURITY_ADMIN_PASSWORD=secret" \
  grafana/grafana

The back-end web server has a number of configuration options. Go to the Configuration page for details on all those options.

For any changes to conf/grafana.ini (or corresponding environment variables) to take effect you need to restart Grafana by restarting the Docker container.

Default Paths

The following settings are hard-coded when launching the Grafana Docker container and can only be overridden using environment variables, not in conf/grafana.ini.

SettingDefault value
GF_PATHS_CONFIG/etc/grafana/grafana.ini
GF_PATHS_DATA/var/lib/grafana
GF_PATHS_HOME/usr/share/grafana
GF_PATHS_LOGS/var/log/grafana
GF_PATHS_PLUGINS/var/lib/grafana/plugins
GF_PATHS_PROVISIONING/etc/grafana/provisioning

Running a Specific Version of Grafana

# specify right tag, e.g. 5.1.0 - see Docker Hub for available tags
$ docker run \
  -d \
  -p 3000:3000 \
  --name grafana \
  grafana/grafana:5.1.0

Running the master branch

For every successful build of the master branch we update the grafana/grafana:master tag and create a new tag grafana/grafana-dev:master-<commit hash> with the hash of the git commit that was built. This means you can always get the latest version of Grafana.

When running Grafana master in production we strongly recommend that you use the grafana/grafana-dev:master-<commit hash> tag as that will guarantee that you use a specific version of Grafana instead of whatever was the most recent commit at the time.

For a list of available tags, check out grafana/grafana and grafana/grafana-dev.

Installing Plugins for Grafana

Pass the plugins you want installed to docker with the GF_INSTALL_PLUGINS environment variable as a comma separated list. This will pass each plugin name to grafana-cli plugins install ${plugin} and install them when Grafana starts.

docker run \
  -d \
  -p 3000:3000 \
  --name=grafana \
  -e "GF_INSTALL_PLUGINS=grafana-clock-panel,grafana-simple-json-datasource" \
  grafana/grafana

Building a custom Grafana image with pre-installed plugins

In the grafana-docker there is a folder called custom/ which includes a Dockerfile that can be used to build a custom Grafana image. It accepts GRAFANA_VERSION and GF_INSTALL_PLUGINS as build arguments.

Example of how to build and run:

cd custom
docker build -t grafana:latest-with-plugins \
  --build-arg "GRAFANA_VERSION=latest" \
  --build-arg "GF_INSTALL_PLUGINS=grafana-clock-panel,grafana-simple-json-datasource" .

docker run \
  -d \
  -p 3000:3000 \
  --name=grafana \
  grafana:latest-with-plugins

Configuring AWS Credentials for CloudWatch Support

$ docker run \
  -d \
  -p 3000:3000 \
  --name=grafana \
  -e "GF_AWS_PROFILES=default" \
  -e "GF_AWS_default_ACCESS_KEY_ID=YOUR_ACCESS_KEY" \
  -e "GF_AWS_default_SECRET_ACCESS_KEY=YOUR_SECRET_KEY" \
  -e "GF_AWS_default_REGION=us-east-1" \
  grafana/grafana

You may also specify multiple profiles to GF_AWS_PROFILES (e.g. GF_AWS_PROFILES=default another).

Supported variables:

  • GF_AWS_${profile}_ACCESS_KEY_ID: AWS access key ID (required).
  • GF_AWS_${profile}_SECRET_ACCESS_KEY: AWS secret access key (required).
  • GF_AWS_${profile}_REGION: AWS region (optional).
# create a persistent volume for your data in /var/lib/grafana (database and plugins)
docker volume create grafana-storage

# start grafana
docker run \
  -d \
  -p 3000:3000 \
  --name=grafana \
  -v grafana-storage:/var/lib/grafana \
  grafana/grafana

Grafana container using bind mounts

You may want to run Grafana in Docker but use folders on your host for the database or configuration. When doing so it becomes important to start the container with a user that is able to access and write to the folder you map into the container.

mkdir data # creates a folder for your data
ID=$(id -u) # saves your user id in the ID variable

# starts grafana with your user id and using the data folder
docker run -d --user $ID --volume "$PWD/data:/var/lib/grafana" -p 3000:3000 grafana/grafana:5.1.0

Reading secrets from files (support for Docker Secrets)

Only available in Grafana v5.2+.

It’s possible to supply Grafana with configuration through files. This works well with Docker Secrets as the secrets by default gets mapped into /run/secrets/<name of secret> of the container.

You can do this with any of the configuration options in conf/grafana.ini by setting GF_<SectionName>_<KeyName>__FILE to the path of the file holding the secret.

Let’s say you want to set the admin password this way.

  • Admin password secret: /run/secrets/admin_password
  • Environment variable: GF_SECURITY_ADMIN_PASSWORD__FILE=/run/secrets/admin_password

Migration from a previous version of the docker container to 5.1 or later

The docker container for Grafana has seen a major rewrite for 5.1.

Important changes

  • file ownership is no longer modified during startup with chown
  • default user id 472 instead of 104
  • no more implicit volumes
    • /var/lib/grafana
    • /etc/grafana
    • /var/log/grafana

Removal of implicit volumes

Previously /var/lib/grafana, /etc/grafana and /var/log/grafana were defined as volumes in the Dockerfile. This led to the creation of three volumes each time a new instance of the Grafana container started, whether you wanted it or not.

You should always be careful to define your own named volume for storage, but if you depended on these volumes you should be aware that an upgraded container will no longer have them.

Warning: when migrating from an earlier version to 5.1 or later using docker compose and implicit volumes you need to use docker inspect to find out which volumes your container is mapped to so that you can map them to the upgraded container as well. You will also have to change file ownership (or user) as documented below.

User ID changes

In 5.1 we switched the id of the grafana user. Unfortunately this means that files created prior to 5.1 won’t have the correct permissions for later versions. We made this change so that it would be more likely that the grafana users id would be unique to Grafana. For example, on Ubuntu 16.04 104 is already in use by the syslog user.

VersionUserUser ID
< 5.1grafana104
>= 5.1grafana472

There are two possible solutions to this problem. Either you start the new container as the root user and change ownership from 104 to 472 or you start the upgraded container as user 104.

Running docker as a different user

docker run --user 104 --volume "<your volume mapping here>" grafana/grafana:5.1.0
Specifying a user in docker-compose.yml
version: "2"

services:
  grafana:
    image: grafana/grafana:5.1.0
    ports:
      - 3000:3000
    user: "104"

Modifying permissions

The commands below will run bash inside the Grafana container with your volume mapped in. This makes it possible to modify the file ownership to match the new container. Always be careful when modifying permissions.

$ docker run -ti --user root --volume "<your volume mapping here>" --entrypoint bash grafana/grafana:5.1.0

# in the container you just started:
chown -R root:root /etc/grafana && \
  chmod -R a+r /etc/grafana && \
  chown -R grafana:grafana /var/lib/grafana && \
  chown -R grafana:grafana /usr/share/grafana

Logging in for the first time

To run Grafana open your browser and go to http://localhost:3000/. 3000 is the default http port that Grafana listens to if you haven’t configured a different port. Then follow the instructions here.