truncate docker container log

sometimes you just want to clear logs of a docker container.
For instance, I’m running dnsmasq in a docker container and I’m troubleshooting raspberry PI PXE boot (yes to run ESXi-ARM stateless…)
And the dnsmasq is serving my homelab its domain.
Then it can be an annoyance when you run docker logs <container name> seeing all the log entries since the container started.
And you just want to start with a clean slate.

It is the way

Yes, there is a way. And when you google you’ll find more blog posts giving you the solution. Which is

pi@raspberrypi~ $ sudo docker inspect --format='{{.LogPath}}' <container name>
pi@raspberrypi~ $ sudo truncate -s 0 <path presented by previous command>

And it works great… but… typing 2 lines of code… copy / pasting the log path in the second command.. way too dificult 🙂
So what do you think abou this ?

pi@taspberrypi~$ sudo  truncate -s 0  $(docker inspect --format='{{.LogPath}}' <container name>)

Yes, it will erase all logging, but that is the purpose of this whole excercise.


If the one-liner isn’t helping, how about creating a small script just for one purpose alone…. What if you could do something like

pi@raspberrypi~$ truncate-log dnsmasq

To truncate the docker logs of the dnsmasq docker container. How ? Well easy.
Just create a new file in /usr/local/bin

pi@raspberrypi~$ nano /usr/local/bin/truncate-log

and copy / paste this content into the file

truncate -s 0 $(docker inspect --format='{{.LogPath}}' $CONTAINER)

After saving the file. (Ctrl-x), add the execution bit

pi@raspberrypi~$ chmod +x /usr/local/bin/truncate-log

And voila, the next time you need to truncate a docker container log, you just type truncate-log <docker container name>

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