Running and Connecting to a Docker Container

Connect to your running container

Now that we have a list of running containers, we can use this information to connect. When connecting to a container, you will have different types of interfaces depending on what software the container is running. Most base OS containers, such as Debian or CentOS, will give you a bash shell. Projects such as Asterisk or FreeSWITCH will give you access to the applications CLI, such as fs_cli or asterisk -rv.

  1. You can connect to the container previously listed with the docker ps command using the follwing:

    docker attach <container id>

  • You can either use the container id or container name.
  • In my previous image, the container id would be 60968049d6b3 and the container name would be pedantic_varahamihira
  • If you do not specify a name, docker will randomly assign one.
    • You can assign a container name when running with the --name flag.
  • Once you have ran the docker attach command, you will probably need to hit enter a couple times to see a prompt.


  1. To detach your terminal from the running container, use the follwoing key combination:

    CTRL + P and CTRL + Q

  2. If you type exit while attached to the container, the container will stop running. You can also use the following command, which will send a sigterm message to the container:

    docker stop <container name>