How to Install Docker Compose on Linux

How to Install Docker Compose on Linux

Docker Compose simplifies the process of managing multi-container Docker applications, making it an indispensable tool for developers and sysadmins alike. If you’re on a Linux system and looking to harness the power of orchestrated Docker containers, you’re in the right place. In this guide, we’ll walk you through a step-by-step installation of Docker Compose on Linux, setting the stage for more efficient container management.

What is Docker Compose

Docker Compose is a tool for defining and running multi-container Docker applications. To understand its significance and value, let’s delve deeper into Docker Compose with a few key points:

  1. YAML Configuration. With Docker Compose, you define the services, networks, and volumes for your application in a docker-compose.yml file. This file serves as a blueprint for how Docker should build and run your multi-container application.
  2. Simplicity. Instead of using numerous docker commands to start each individual container and set networks, environments, mounts, etc., you can define everything in the Compose file and then use a few Compose commands to get everything up and running.
  3. Reproducibility. By defining your application’s structure and services in a Compose file, you ensure that it can be consistently reproduced across various environments.
  4. Local Development & Testing. Docker Compose is often used in development and testing environments to replicate production setups. Developers can ensure that their applications run in the same way locally as they would in a production environment.
  5. Integration with Docker Stack. Docker Compose files can be used by Docker Stack in swarm mode, allowing you to deploy your Compose applications to a Docker Swarm cluster.

Process for Installing Docker Compose on Linux

Streamlining the management of multi-container Docker applications on Linux requires the right tools, and Docker Compose stands out as a game-changer in this realm. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to install Docker Compose on Linux.

#1 Ensure Docker is Installed

Before you can use Docker Compose, Docker itself must be installed.

docker --version

Sample Output:

Docker version 20.xx.x, build xxxxxxxx

#2 Download the Latest Docker Compose Binary

You’ll use the curl command to download the Docker Compose binary from Docker’s GitHub repository.

sudo curl -L "$(uname -s)-$(uname -m)" -o /usr/local/bin/docker-compose

#3 Set Execution Permissions

After downloading, set the appropriate permissions to make the binary executable.

sudo chmod +x /usr/local/bin/docker-compose

#4 Verify Installation

Confirm that Docker Compose was installed correctly.

docker-compose --version

#5 Enable Command-line Completion (Optional)

Install command completion for the bash and zsh shell. Here, we’ll cover bash (commonly used shell). If you’re using another shell, check the Docker Compose documentation for specifics.

sudo curl -L -o /etc/bash_completion.d/docker-compose

Once installed, start a new shell session to activate command completion.

Congratulations, you’re now able to install Docker Compose on Linux. With Docker Compose installed, you can define and run multi-container applications with ease. Remember to check the Docker Compose GitHub releases page or the official documentation for updates and changes.


Looking to deploy Linux in the cloud? With Gcore Cloud, you can choose from Basic VM, Virtual Instances, or VPS/VDS suitable for Linux:

Choose an instance

Subscribe to our newsletter

Stay informed about the latest updates, news, and insights.