Golang Shared Objects in Docker Alpine Containers

Hola Go devs!

Golang has an amazing compile experience. It's quick, a lot of errors are caught because of static typing, cross-compilation is effortless and the binary just works. Not having to install a runtime is the way it should be.

At wepala where I currently work, we use Golang a lot. When it comes to deploying Go binaries, we opt for Linux Alpine docker images as they're pretty small. Who doesn't love a container that's 25MB?

I don't usually encounter a problem with this setup, but a recent project requires me to use Go plugins. With plugins, instead of an executable, I create an .so (shared object) file when I compile my Go code.

When I first tried to load my plugin with a Go app in an Alpine container, I get this error message:

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standard_init_linux.go:211: exec user process caused "no such file or directory"

At the time I figured this out, googling that error did not return many useful results. Turns out the fix was pretty simple, in your Dockerfile with the Go plugin add this line:

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RUN apk add --no-cache libc6-compat

It seems that my plugin had dependencies that required some C libraries that didn't exist in the base Alpine image. I tried disabling CGO when building the plugins but no luck.

This solution worked best for me. Hopefully, it saves you a lot of search time!

Happy dockering!