Redismod - A Redis Docker Image with Redis Modules

If you've ever wanted to try out some of the Redis Modules which were introduced in v4.0 it has never been easier than now: "redismod - a Docker image with select Redis Labs modules".

The included modules are:


Rather want to do it yourself? There is also a POC kind of blog post from last year on how to build Redis Modules from scratch with a basic proof of concept dockerfile and also showing how to use it with NodeJS.

But first have a look at the redismod dockerfile as it is a great example for using the meanwhile available multi-stage builds in Docker container images.


Go ahead and first pull this "quasi"-official image by redislabs from Docker Hub:

docker pull redislabs/redismod

And then have an optional look at the image sizes:

# optionally: docker pull redis

docker images | grep redis

REPOSITORY            TAG       IMAGE ID        CREATED        SIZE
redislabs/redismod    latest    954b356d32d6    2 weeks ago    115MB
redis                 latest    bfcb1f6df2db    3 weeks ago    107MB

8 MB only is the difference in size, yet you get a full-featured, multi-model NoSQL database. Of course, admittedly, Redis Modules are not (yet) as capable as other databases but it is impressive that it is possible at all - with this little footprint.

Config Options

This image is based on the official image of Redis from Docker. By default, the container starts with Redis' default configuration and all included modules loaded (source).

However, if you want only certain modules to be loaded you can pass these in on the the docker cli as follows:

--loadmodule /usr/lib/redis/modules/ \
--loadmodule /usr/lib/redis/modules/

Also on the cli you can pass in the data directory to use:

--dir /data

Both of the settings can of course also be set via the redis.conf file.

The rest, as it is based on the official Redis image, is pretty much as usual with Redis:

  • Exposed port is 6379 ... if you want this container port mapped to your docker host, use -p 6379:6379 to make it externally accessible
  • Set config directory and file is /usr/local/etc/redis/redis.conf which you can
    • COPY into the container (at image build time) or
    • map into the container (at container runtime) with a volume like -v /path/on/host/redis.conf:/usr/local/etc/redis/redis.conf or
    • use something like Docker Configs for it (only on Docker Swarm)
  • A password authentication can be set via
    • the redis.conf file or
    • in an own Dockerfile CMD (be careful to not overwrite the base image's CMD for modules, see below) or
    • in Docker Secrets (again only on Docker Swarm)

Image Build Time

If using redismod as base for an own dockerfile keep in mind that the redismod dockerfile uses CMD to load the modules: So if you use a CMD in your dockerfile (and thus overwrite the base image's CMD, make sure to also explicitly load the modules you want in your CMD instruction).

The ENTRYPOINT in the base image is redis-server so your CMD may not start with redis-server. This is different from the regular official Redis image where the CMD itself starts with redis-server

So the best probably is to not mess with a custom CMD instruction at all, but rather provide a custom redis.conf file or use the above explained arguments for docker run.

Container Runtime

The Docker Hub repo page gives plenty of plain docker run ... based examples and the Github Hub repo page also offers a (very) basic docker-compose.yaml.

If you just quickly want to test the default container and especially its Redis Modules (without any data persistence, custom configuration or external accessibility) the easiest way to start is probably with a detached, interactive container which you connect to via docker exec and then enter redis-cli for issuing Redis (Module) commands:

docker run -itd redislabs/redismod

docker exec -it <ctr_id> /bin/bash

redis-cli> JSON.SET foo . '"bar"'

# OR> GRAPH.QUERY mygraph "CREATE (:person {name: 'Kurt', age:27})"
1) 1) ""
2) 1) Labels added: 1
   2) Nodes created: 1
   3) Properties set: 2
   4) "Query internal execution time: 0.111000 milliseconds"> GRAPH.QUERY mygraph "MATCH (n) RETURN (n)"
1) 1) "n.age,\x00"
   2) "27.000000,Kurt"
2) 1) "Query internal execution time: 0.097000 milliseconds"


docker rm -vf <ctr_id>

More examples can be found on each module's docs site.

Other clients than redis-cli

Most of the Redis Module docs site provide further information on available clients ... e.g. for rejson access in node.js there is node_redis-rejson . For node.js and node_redis you can always take the node_redis send_command which should work for any Redis Module (see the mentioned previous blog post towards the end for some more details).


Go ahead, give it a try ... it only takes some minutes to get started and might open quite a few options on how (far) to use Redis.

Further Information:

Redismod and Redis Docker Images:

Docs for the Redis Modules:

NodeJS clients:
node_redis send_command

Using Redis Modules with NodeJS in a Docker Container: