A simplified Linux distribution built from containers, for containers

Everything in RancherOS is a container managed by Docker.
It includes only the bare minimum amount of software needed to run Docker. Everything else can be pulled dynamically through Docker.

Download RancherOS

Fast, ultra-lightweight container OS

RancherOS makes it simple to run containers at scale in development, test and production. By containerizing system services and leveraging Docker for management, the operating system provides a very reliable and easy to manage container-ready environment.

System services are defined by Docker Compose and automatically configured using cloud-init, reducing administrative burden. Unneeded libraries and services are eliminated, resulting in a significantly reduced footprint and minimizing the hassle of updating, patching and maintaining a container host operating system.

Simplify your
container environment

Boot containers
in seconds

Decrease OS footprint
by 3X or more

Automate OS configuration
with cloud-init

It's easy to get started!

Get started

Follow our quick start guide and get started with RancherOS.

View the guide

Use the docs

Here's a wealth of information in the technical documents in case you need it.

Read the docs

Use Rancher with RancherOS

RancherOS can be used to launch Rancher and be used as the OS to add hosts to Rancher.

Learn how

Take advantage of the forums

The forums are the best place to hear about the latest product releases as well as interact with your peers and Rancher engineers.

Visit the forums

Get support

Our expert engineers are here to help.

Request support


We welcome input and contributions to this open source project.


The Rancher

Learn how Rancher is different from other solutions like GKE, EKS, AKS, Kops, Kubespray, OpenShift, and more.

Read More

Rancher 2.0:
Technical Architecture Guide

Our technical architecture paper explains the features and functionality of the container management platform.

Read More

For Training

Join us in this monthly training as we discuss basic Kubernetes concepts and demonstrate how to deploy and manage an application.

Sign Up