Docker Community Forums

Share and learn in the Docker community.

Migrate Windows 7 applications to Windows 10 (11?)

Hi Folks,

I have a basic understanding of Docker. I understand it to be more than an application and less than a virtual machine. And I have questions about where to discover the small bit that I need to know to decide if Docker is a solution to my problem. There is so much available and I don’t think I understand enough to even ask intelligent questions.

I have a moderately complex application that installs on Windows 7 and runs, and installs on Windows 10, but will not run. This application cooperates with Word and Adobe PDF Reader and all three are necessary.

  1. 1 - Can I bundle all three applications in one container?

  2. 2 - Will each application present it’s own set of native windows or will they “packaged” by a Docker window, like a remote desktop?

  3. 3 - Is “containerizing” an application similar to installing it, meaning if I “containerize” on Windows 7, do I get all of my Windows 7 context, or is this dependency resolution a manual process?

Thanks for the help,


I am afraid what you are looking for can not be done with Docker on Windows.

Neither is it possible for Windows container to get a remote desktop or any sort of desktop from a container, nor is it possible to run an image that does not support the host’s kernel.

See for list of available Windows base images: Windows, Windows Server Core, Windows Nano Server.
All of the base images have in common that they start with Windows 10…

There is no way arround classic vm’s for your use-case.

Hi Meyay,

So, the problem is that there is no base image for Windows 7?

Thanks for the help,


though, you understood there is no remote desktop or any sort of ui for process in containers, right?

Yes. That was never a question. I introduced remote desktops as a metaphor for displays. A remote desktop displays all of its applications on the one remote desktop display. My question was whether docker creates a docker display, and then provides real estate for each of its contained applications, or remains uninvolved in the display and the individual applications manage their own display as though they were not containerized at all. It makes very little difference, and that loan would not change my decision to use docker or not, but since I have zero experience with docker, it was a question I had.

Thanks for your help,


While on Linux containers people trick arround and typical embedd novnc or mount the x11 socket from the host into the container, in Windows this workaround is not available. I am afraid Windows containers are only suited for headless services.