Fix Docker Permission Denied Error for node_modules
While trying to develop a React application running inside a Docker container, I ran into an error with permissions for the node_modules folder.
After running the Docker container, it displayed the following error:
[eslint] EACCES: permission denied, mkdir ‘/app/node_modules/.cache’
ERROR in [eslint] EACCES: permission denied, mkdir ‘/app/node_modules/.cache’
That was from a project using Create React App.
I faced a similar result using Vite instead:
Error: EACCES: permission denied, mkdir ‘/app/node_modules/.vite/deps_temp’ at Object.mkdirSync (node:fs:1382:3)
So the problem clearly was something with my Docker configuration.
The Dockerfile I used is a slight modification of the official Node.js Docker example.
FROM node:16-alpine WORKDIR /app COPY package*.json ./ RUN npm install COPY . ./ EXPOSE 3000 CMD [ "npm", "start" ]
Of course, since I was trying to actively develop the application, I needed a way to update the code inside the container.
So, I created a
docker-compose.yml and added 2 volumes to sync local code changes with the container.
services: app: build: . volumes: - ./:/app - /app/node_modules ports: - 3000:3000
But, as I mentioned before, running
docker compose up produced the aforementioned permission error with
I connected to the container and checked the file permissions.
docker exec -it app sh ls -la
And saw that
node_modules belonged to
root while the rest of the files belong to
drwxr-xr-x 1 root root 21534 Mar 6 10:13 node_modules -rw-r--r-- 1 node node 1211893 Mar 6 09:01 package-lock.json -rw-r--r-- 1 node node 810 Mar 6 09:01 package.json drwxr-xr-x 1 node node 132 Mar 6 09:01 public drwxr-xr-x 1 node node 160 Mar 6 09:01 src
The fix to this problem is giving
node user permissions to the
To give permissions, update your Dockerfile:
FROM node:16-alpine RUN mkdir /app && chown node:node /app WORKDIR /app USER node COPY package.json package-lock.json* ./ RUN npm install COPY . . EXPOSE 3000 CMD [ "npm", "start" ]
I used the example Dockerfile of node-docker-good-defaults GitHub repository. I recommend you to check out its Dockerfile and
docker-compose.yml example files and learn more on your own.
For the changes to apply, you might need to bring the container down and clean up its volumes first.
You can do that by running
docker compose down -v.
To rebuild the image, you can run
docker compose up --build.
Now that you have given the
node user ownership over the
node_modules directory, the permission error should be resolved.