Chatmail server docker deployment


I’m looking to deploy a chatmail server. Since it would fit the rest of the stuff deployed on my private-projects machine, I would like to deploy in form of a container, instead of doing it directly on the machine. Has someone done this already, perhaps?

I haven’t found a ready made image or Dockerfile for it. If I just run the instructions from GitHub - deltachat/chatmail: chatmail service deployment scripts and docs inside a Dockerfile, and run the resulting container, would that be likely to work? Or is there some advanced stuff going on in the background that I need to be aware of that I would need to manually expose from the docker side?

Sorry for the rather fuzzy question. This project just looks really interesting, and the chatmail repo seems to make it easy to setup. I was hoping to try it out on my test-server without risking to mess up the other things setup there with my limited sysadmin skills, and containers are my go-to for that.


Thanks for your interest. IIRC, last time a docker chatmail image was discussed the following was noted:

  • Chatmail deployment uses various UID/GID permissions for postfix/dovecot/etc. … with Docker this needs to happen with the docker-host. For someone who is routinely doing docker, it might be easier but note that mailcow puts postfix and dovecot and cron and other services into separate docker containers but then a lot of wiring together needs to be happen.

  • Ports/networking would need to be configured on the host so that the host exposes SMTP/IMAP properly.

Maybe instead of docker, some other virtualization tech could be easier, where you can run a debian11+chatmail setup and run it as a VM image? In either case, feel free to experiment :slight_smile:

Thanks for the reply. I think the UID/GID stuff can be solved - have seen some scripts that take care of that inside the Dockerfile.
But I need to look into how to properly expose the SMTP/IMAP ports - I’m running most stuff behind a traefik reverse proxy, and have until now only exposed websites through it.

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