podman-init - Initialize one or more containers


podman init [options] container [container…]

podman container init [options] container [container…]


Initialize one or more containers. You may use container IDs or names as input. Initializing a container performs all tasks necessary for starting the container (mounting filesystems, creating an OCI spec, initializing the container network) but does not start the container. If a container is not initialized, the podman start and podman run commands initialize it automatically prior to starting it. This command is intended to be used for inspecting a container’s filesystem or OCI spec prior to starting it. This can be used to inspect the container before it runs, or debug why a container is failing to run.


--all, -a

Initialize all containers. Containers that have already initialized (including containers that have been started and are running) are ignored.

--latest, -l

Instead of providing the container name or ID, use the last created container. Note: the last started container can be from other users of Podman on the host machine. (This option is not available with the remote Podman client, including Mac and Windows (excluding WSL2) machines)


Initialize container with a given ID

podman init 35480fc9d568

Initialize container with a given name

podman init test1

Initialize the latest container created by Podman

podman init --latest


podman(1), podman-start(1)


April 2019, Originally compiled by Matthew Heon