I was faced with the task of enabling the remote API for Docker. Whilst trying a few different solutions (adding hosts to daemon.json), I quickly learnt that I needed to pass parameters to the dockerd command like /usr/bin/dockerd -H tcp:// -H unix:///var/run/docker.sock. As I’m using Systemd I knew I needed to edit the service file, but I was also mindful that any future updates to Docker would blow my changes away. What I provide below is a strategy to override Systemd settings in a non-destructive way.

On Centos 7, docker installs the service in /usr/lib/systemd/system/docker.service. We can view the current config with the simple command systemctl show docker. To edit this file use systemctl edit docker and the result is a new file which is created at /etc/systemd/system/docker.service.d/override.conf. I then editted the file with my editor and added the following:

ExecStart=/usr/bin/dockerd -H tcp:// -H unix:///var/run/docker.sock

If you’re using a configuration management tool you can create the file in the correct location, perform a systemctl daemon-reload followed by systemctl restart docker and the service should get the new updates. Use systemctl show docker to verify the changes.

The example above also works for setting environment variables as seen in the snippet below:

Environment="HTTP_PROXY=http://proxy.example.com:80/" "NO_PROXY=localhost,,docker-registry.somecorporation.com"