Docker Toolbox v Docker for Mac

By | July 25, 2016

If you haven’t heard already, Docker for Mac has been out for since mid June allowing Docker to run natively in OSX without having to install Oracle Virtual Box which in turn provides a linux environment for Docker to run on.

If you have Docker Tool box installed, you can uninstall it in a few simple steps.

  1. First list all your machines via:
>> docker-machine ls

and remove all of them except the “default”

>> docker-machine rm "name"

This essentially removes it from your machines directory at ~/.docker/machine/machines

2. Go to your Applications folder (/Applications) and delete the Docker quickstart icons.

3. Remove the docker, docker-compose and docker-machine commands from /user/local/bin directory. Either navigate to that directory or run:

>> rm /usr/local/bin/docker
>> rm /usr/local/bin/docker-compose
>> rm /usr/local/bin/docker-machine

4. Delete the ~/.docker folder

>> rm -r ~/.docker

Installing Docker is a very quick process. It’s the learning how to use it which you’ll find time consuming.

There are some prerequisites to note:

  • A Mac that is 2010 or newer.
  • OS X 10.10.3 or newer
  • At least 4Gb RAM
  • Virtual Box 4.3.30 or older must NOT be installed.

For a detailed installation guide visit the official page here, but the summary is as follows:

  1. Download the docker.dmg image
  2. Open the installer and drag Moby the whale to the Applications folder
  3. Double click on the whale and confirm a few settings and you’re done

This installs

  • Docker Engine
  • Docker CLI Client
  • Docker Compose
  • Docker Machine

You’ll want to run:

>> docker --version

to confirm everything is up and running.

Screen Shot 2016-07-25 at 10.22.16 AM


  • Docker for Mac uses Hyperkit instead of Oracle VirtualBox. Hyperkit is a lightweight OSX virtualization tool built on top of the Hypervisor framework in OSX 10.10 and higher.
  • Installing Docker for Mac does not affect machines you created with Docker Machine.
  • The Docker for Mac application does not use docker-machine to provision VM. It creates and manages it directly.
  • At installation time, Docker for Mac provisions an HyperKit VM based on Alpine Linux, running Docker Engine. It exposes the docker API on a socket in /var/tmp/docker.sock.

For more details check out the docs here.

2 thoughts on “Docker Toolbox v Docker for Mac

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *