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Migrating from Docker Hub to the IBM Cloud Container Registry

By Arthur Barr posted Wed March 22, 2023 09:10 AM


Pre-built IBM MQ Advanced for Developers and IBM MQ Operator container images have been available on Docker Hub for many years.  IBM now has its own secure container registry, so is migrating its free-to-use container images from Docker Hub to the IBM Cloud Container Registry (  The IBM registry does not apply the same rate limiting that Docker Hub has introduced.  Use of Docker Hub was deprecated from February 2022.

MQ Advanced for Developers

If you specify a container image, either on the command line (e.g. with docker run), or in a Dockerfile (e.g. with a FROM statement), then Docker defaults to searching for that image in its own Docker Hub registry.  This default is also used by Podman, and by some configurations of container orchestrators like Kubernetes.  Older versions of IBM MQ Advanced for Developers were made available in the Docker Hub registry, but from IBM MQ Advanced for Developers 9.2.5 onwards, images are released on instead.  So you just need to make the following switch:

ibmcom/mq becomes

For example:

docker run \
  --env LICENSE=accept \
  --env MQ_QMGR_NAME=QM1 \
--detach \

The IBM Cloud Container Registry does not have a "front door" web page to describe all the available images.  Instead, you can use a tool like skopeo to list the available images:

skopeo list-tags docker:// 

For more details, see How to check images available on IBM Cloud Container Registry (

Other documentation for the pre-built MQ Advanced for Developers images is available in the IBM MQ Documentation

Important: the images on Docker Hub are deprecated and do not receive updates.  These images contain security vulnerabilities and should no longer be used.  The latest versions with the latest security patches are available on

Old versions of MQ Operator

The IBM MQ Operator for Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform, which is part of the IBM Cloud Pak for Integration, was also originally published in the Docker Hub registry.  If you are using an older, out-of-support operator (MQ Operator versions 1.0 to 1.5) the images are on (note that MQ Operator 1.3 was an extended update support release, and was made available on from version 1.3.2).  If you are using images from Docker Hub, there are two options:

  1. Update to a later version of the IBM MQ Operator.  This also means you will eligible for fixes if needed, and you will get the latest security fixes.
  2. Add an ImageContentSourcePolicy to your OpenShift cluster, to use as a mirror for  There are detailed instructions on Implementing ImageContentSourcePolicy to redirect to the IBM Container Registry in the IBM Cloud Pak documentation.  Note that you will not receive any fixes, and are using images with security vulnerabilities.