Running HelioViewer in a Docker Container

HelioViewer can run in a container!

The container works by mounting the API, Site, and Sample data into the container which runs both MySQL and an Apache Webserver. With the container running locally, you can easily view and test changes on HelioViewer.

If you would like to set up your own HelioViewer container, follow the instructions below. If you would like to contribute to the container you can make a pull request on github

(Edited: 01/07/2022)


For this setup, you will need:


  1. First clone and the API
    git clone
    git clone
  2. Extract the sample data to a folder. Your directory structure should look like this:
    - api
  3. Pull the docker container
    docker pull dgarciabriseno/
  4. Run the container while specifying the volumes to each folder. The sample-data folder does not need to exist, it will be created when the command runs.
    docker run \
     -p \
     -p \
     -v "$PWD/api:/var/www/" \
     -v "$PWD/" \
     -v "$PWD/sample-data:/var/www/jp2" \
     -d \
     -t dgarciabriseno/
  5. Once the container starts, view the log in docker and verify there are no errors. Please report any issues on our github

  6. Open your local helioviewer at http://localhost:8080 You should see the helioviewer GUI, but no images of the sun yet.

  7. Inside the container’s shell, execute the downloader script to begin downloading images to view.
    # Easy setup script
    bash ~/setup_files/scripts/
    # Advanced install script
    python3 /var/www/ -d lmsal -s "2022-01-01 00:00:00" -e "2022-01-02 00:00:00"
Written on November 23, 2021 by Daniel Garcia Briseno