The Dell Linux Engineering team has been evaluating Docker containers and exploring ways for optionally delivering Dell applications via containers. In August 2015 we announced an unsupported test image of OpenManage System Administrator (OMSA) as a way for customers to run OMSA on unsupported Linux distributions such as Ubuntu Server and Debian.

During our evaluation, we noticed that the output of some of Docker’s native CLI tools to list images and containers was a bit hard to read, so we wrote a few wrapper scripts to parse the output and present it in a more readable format. These tools have been uploaded to GitHub and can be found here.


The output of “docker images” (which lists all images in a host) can be hard to read depending on the width of your terminal session, but even for an 80-character wide terminal it can be a bit cumbersome to read:

$ docker images

REPOSITORY                           TAG                 IMAGE ID            CREATED             VIRTUAL SIZE                     12.04               0ac5b09d8536        10 days ago         136 MB                      latest              c08dd1f8fad9        2 weeks ago         109.2 MB                     centos6             3bbbf0aca359        2 weeks ago         190.6 MB       latest              14c9ffaa58cd        6 weeks ago         923.8 MB                     14.04               91e54dfb1179        10 weeks ago        188.3 MB

Instead, you could have something like this:



| image                          | tag     | id           | size     |


|               | 12.04   | 0ac5b09d8536 | 136 MB   |

|                | latest  | c08dd1f8fad9 | 109.2 MB |

|               | centos6 | 3bbbf0aca359 | 190.6 MB |

| | latest  | 14c9ffaa58cd | 923.8 MB |

|               | 14.04   | 91e54dfb1179 | 188.3 MB |


The output of “docker ps –a” (which lists all containers in a host) is even more difficult to read:

$ docker ps –a

CONTAINER ID        IMAGE               COMMAND                  CREATED             STATUS                        PORTS                          NAMES

8805dd058de7        httpd-home          "/bin/sh -c '/usr/sbi"   3 weeks ago         Up 4 days           >80/tcp             httpd1

2f6c3cdece74        samba               "/usr/sbin/smbd -F"      5 weeks ago         Up 15 hours         >139/tcp           smb

a36f96134297        httpd-wget          "/bin/sh -c '/usr/sbi"   7 weeks ago         Up 4 days           >443/tcp          httpd2

7d514765cf40        sshd-put            "/usr/sbin/sshd -D"      10 weeks ago        Exited (255) 56 seconds ago

Instead, you could have a cleaner output:



| name   | state    | ip         | port            |


| httpd1 | running  | | 80/tcp -> 80    |

| smb    | running  | | 139/tcp -> 139  |

| httpd2 | running  | | 443/tcp -> 8088 |

| sshd1  | shut off | n/a        | n/a             |


$ -h

Usage: [options]

   Display container information in a nice readable format.


  -h, --help  show this help message and exit

  -i          image

  -I          ip

  -P          ports

  -v          volumes

  -n          node

  -c          command

  -p          pid


We also posted other tools for more easily managing Docker images and containers. Before using them in a live environment, be sure to familiarize yourself with the different command options.


Please note these tools are provided as-is and not supported by Dell. Feel free to clone the git repository and adapt the tools to suit your needs. Or better yet, submit a bug or pull request via GitHub, contributions are welcome.