How to run Oracle DB on a Mac with Docker

November 05, 2019

Oracle puts out a Windows and Linux binary for their Oracle Database servers, but what if you want to run it on a Mac? The solution for a while was to use a VM and boot up the linux version. Nowadays using Docker is a little bit easier.

I will say that running Oracle DB on docker is not quite as easy as running SQL Server on Docker, but it is also not too difficult.

Download the Oracle Database Linux Binary

Your first step is to download the Download the Oracle Express Edition version 18c (xe) Linux rpm from Oracle's docker files do support other editions, but the Express Edition is sufficient for getting started.

Clone the Oracle Dockerfile Repo

Oracle has a GitHub repo with all its Dockerfiles, you can clone it (download it) by running:

git clone

Copy Binary to Dockerfiles dir

Within the git repository you just cloned, go to the OracleDatabase dockerfiles folder:

cd ./OracleDatabase/SingleInstance/dockerfiles

Copy the binary you downloaded in step 1 to the 18.4.0 folder within the dockerfiles folder:

cp ~/Downloads/oracle-database-xe-18c-1.0-1.x86_64.rpm ./18.4.0

Build a Docker Image

Run the script:

./ -x -v 18.4.0

The -x tells the script that you are installing the express edition, and the -v 18.4.0 tells it which version you are installing.

This step will take a few minutes.

Look for local docker image

You should now have a docker image named oracle/database:18.4.0-xe which you can start using docker. Run docker images from Terminal to look for it and make sure it is there. The total size of the image will be around 8-9GB.

Start an Oracle Database Using docker-compose

Finally we'll create a docker-compose.yml file so we can easily startup the db whenever we need it:

version: "3"
          image: oracle/database:18.4.0-xe
              - "11521:1521"
              - ORACLE_PWD=testing12345

Now we can start up our container by running:

docker-compose up

If you omit the ORACLE_PWD environment variable it will just generate a presumably random password and output it during startup. The startup takes a few minutes to initialize.

After it starts up you will have an oracle database that is accessible on your local machine on port 11521.

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Thank you very much, exactly what I was looking for!

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