Prepare Docker image for Arm embedded development

You can prepare a Docker image containing Arm Compiler for Embedded and a library of Fixed Virtual Platforms (FVPs) , for use as a basic build and run environment.

The operating system of the docker image is Ubuntu, though the host machine could be Windows or a different flavor of Linux.

Linux users may need to precede the docker commands below with sudo, as the docker daemon always runs as the root user.

Before you begin

Download and install the appropriate version of Docker for your host platform.

Prepare files to copy into image

Download the installation packages for Arm Compiler for Embedded and the FVP library from the Product Download Hub .

Create a (temporary) directory, and copy the compiler and FVP library installers here.

Note that the exact file names are dependent on the versions used - you may need to update the below Dockerfile as necessary.

Create Dockerfile

A Dockerfile is a text file containing all the instructions to build your docker image.

In the same directory, create a text file named exactly Dockerfile containing the below .

Notes regarding Dockerfile

This file copies the installers to the Docker image. The exact filename(s) will depend on the versions used.

Edit the Dockerfile as necessary (ACfE and FVP arguments), else edit on the build command line (see later).

Whilst installing the compiler and FVP library , the EULA(s) are silently accepted. Be sure that this is satisfactory for you.

You will need to edit the licensing portion of the file to match your internal license setup. See Arm User-Based Licenses for more information.



            FROM ubuntu:20.04 as base

# Install packages: update filenames if necessary
ARG ACfE=ARMCompiler6.19_standalone_linux-x86_64.tar.gz
ARG FVP=FVP_ARM_Std_Library_11.20_15_Linux64.tgz
ARG ARCH=x86_64

ENV USER=ubuntu

# Update docker image OS
RUN echo 'debconf debconf/frontend select Noninteractive' | debconf-set-selections
RUN apt-get update
RUN apt-get install -y --no-install-recommends apt-utils
RUN apt-get -y upgrade

# Install necessary dependencies
RUN apt-get install -y nano sudo ca-certificates git make cmake lsb-core libx11-dev libxext6 libsm6 libxcursor1 libxft2 libxrandr2 libxt6 libxinerama1 libz-dev lsb xterm telnet dos2unix

# Setup default user
RUN useradd --create-home -s /bin/bash -m $USER && echo "$USER:$USER" | chpasswd && adduser $USER sudo
RUN echo '%sudo ALL=(ALL) NOPASSWD:ALL' >> /etc/sudoers

USER ubuntu

# Install Arm Compiler for Embedded
COPY $ACfE /home/$USER
RUN mkdir /home/$USER/tmp
RUN tar xvfz $ACfE  -C /home/$USER/tmp
RUN /home/$USER/tmp/install_$ --i-agree-to-the-contained-eula --no-interactive -q -f -d /home/$USER/ACfE
RUN rm -rf /home/$USER/tmp
RUN rm $ACfE
ENV PATH "/home/$USER/ACfE/bin:$PATH"

# Install FVP Library
RUN mkdir /home/$USER/tmp
RUN tar xvfz $FVP  -C /home/$USER/tmp
RUN /home/$USER/tmp/ --i-agree-to-the-contained-eula --no-interactive -q -f -d /home/$USER/FVP
RUN rm -rf /home/$USER/tmp
ENV PATH "/home/$USER/FVP/bin:/home/$USER/FVP/FVP_Base:/home/$USER/FVP/FVP_MPS2:/home/$USER/FVP/FVP_VE:/home/$USER/FVP/FVP_BaseR:$PATH"

# License configuration
# Uncomment and modify below as appropriate
# ENV ARMLM_ONDEMAND_ACTIVATION=product_code@https://internal.ubl.server
#   or
# RUN armlm activate --code <activation-code>
#   or

Build docker image

Use the command:


            docker build -t arm-environment .

to build a docker image named arm-environment. This name is arbitrary, and can be changed if you wish.

To change Dockerfile arguments from the command line, use the --build-arg option. For example to build an Arm-hosted docker image:


            docker build --build-arg ARCH=aarch64 --build-arg ACfE=ARMCompiler6.19_standalone_linux-aarch64.tar.gz --build-arg FVP=FVP_ARM_Std_Library_11.20_15_Linux64_armv8l.tgz -t arm-environment:aarch64 .

After a few minutes the docker image will be built and be ready for use. You can see all available images with the command:


            docker images

Access the docker image

To interact with your docker image, enter the command:


            docker run -i -t arm-environment /bin/bash

and you will enter the terminal of the docker image. Verify everything is working correctly with, for example:


            armclang --version

You have created a docker environment containing Arm Compiler for Embedded and the FVP library, which you can share and replicate as needed.