Monday, September 27, 2021

Beginners Guide to Installing Process Automation Tooling in a Local Container using Podman

Recently the open source community project called Podman announced that there was solid support for using its container tooling to replace docker on your local development machine. Ring in the joyous music and off we go to explore how we can get back to basics without the issues of licensing around the developer desktop container tooling.

Note, the rest of this tutorial will be based on the current version of Podman at the time of publication, v3.3.1.

The first thing you want to do is just install the Podman tooling, which is fairly painless using BREW:

$ brew install podman

Now you are ready to kick off the virtual machine with the proper settings to start doing something real, like adding developer process automation tooling to your local machine.

You start by initialise and start the virtual machine to run Podman on:

$ podman machine init --memory 6144 --disk-size 20

Extracting compressed file
Image resized.

If it's your first time doing this, an image will be downloaded first, but in this case a cached version of that image is just being unpacked and setup. Now it's time to start the virtual machine:

$ podman machine start

INFO[0000] waiting for clients...                       
INFO[0000] listening tcp://                 
INFO[0000] new connection from  to /var/folders/_y/1rjzwypx57sd677v9jzrr0nc0000gp/T/podman/qemu_podman-machine-default.sock 
Waiting for VM ...
qemu-system-x86_64: warning: host doesn't support requested feature: CPUID.80000001H:ECX.svm [bit 2]

Now once this completes, you're ready to take a swing at spinning up the developer process automation tooling by Red Hat. First we pull in this nice demo project for installing it locally or in a container:

$ git clone

Then go into the rhpam-install-demo directory and examine the instructions for using this with Podman to spin up the process automation developer tooling in a container. You will note that you need to head over to Red Hat Developer site and obtain the files listed in the installs/README before you can continue. 

Before you try to use Podman to build, pull, or run any images on your machine, verify that the virtual machine is running to support you:

$ podman machine list

NAME                     VM TYPE     CREATED        LAST UP
podman-machine-default*  qemu        9 minutes ago  Currently running

Once that's done, you can start from the root directory and build your first image:

$ podman build -t rhpam-install:7.11 .


STEP 24/26: USER 1000
--> 2a682b0c5aa
STEP 25/26: EXPOSE 9990 9999 8080 8001
--> 6a1ed7c4d2e
STEP 26/26: CMD ["/opt/jboss/rhpam/jboss-eap-7.3/bin/","-c","standalone.xml","-b", "","-bmanagement",""]
COMMIT rhpam-install:7.11
--> fbba2e41494
Successfully tagged localhost/rhpam-install:7.11

This will take some time to execute every line in the provided Dockerfile, so feel free to watch or explore that file until the build process is done.

You can verify that you have a new image built:

$ podman image list

REPOSITORY                            TAG     IMAGE ID      CREATED        SIZE
localhost/rhpam-install               7.11    fbba2e414940  7 minutes ago  4.05 GB  latest  b73501ac39b1  5 years ago    514 MB

You can see the base image is a customised developer image that we then use to build our rhpam-install image. 

The next step is to run the image:

$ podman run -dt -p 8080:8080 -p 9990:9990 rhpam-install


This starts the image and spins up both Red Hat Enterprise Application Server and running inside of that the Red Hat Process Automation tooling. You can view this by looking up the container id, then viewing the log file to ensure the container startup is completed before using the tooling:

$ podman container list

CONTAINER ID  IMAGE                         COMMAND               CREATED        
9bd0e70e58dd  localhost/rhpam-install:7.11  /opt/jboss/rhpam/...  2 minutes ago

$ podman logs 9bd0e70e58dd


12:50:50,612 INFO  [] (pool-30-thread-1) Initialize deployments task finished successfully.

Note you can use the -f flag to attache the logs output to the console and watch the container start up. Now that it's been started successfully we can make use of the port mapping we did at podman run when we used the -p flag. Port 8080 from our localhost is now mapped through to the containers port. 

You can verify this with:

$ podman port 9bd0e70e58dd

8080/tcp ->
9990/tcp ->

Now you can access the process automation business central log in to access the tooling at:


The login user: erics

The password: redhatpam1!

red hat process automation

You will be presented with the business central dashboard and you are ready to start automating processes using this tooling in a container on your local machine. 

red hat process automation

If you need help getting started, try one of the free online workshops!