Do you want to build a sandman?

StackFoundation’s Sandbox automates your daily Docker chores

Jane Elizabeth
© Shutterstock / goodmoments

Looking for a tool to run Docker-based workflows to automate your day-to-day development chores? Introducing Sandbox, from StackFoundation. Sandbox intends to be a new, reliable tool for developers to design automated workflows.

No one likes doing routine chores. But while the world is still waiting on robotic butlers and artificial assistants, some of developmental pressure is off, thanks to the all-new Sandbox.

The brainchild of StackFoundation, Sandbox is a tool for running Docker-based workflows to reliably automate your day-to-day development chores.  Intended to make lives easier for developers, this tool should take care of a lot of mundane programming tasks.

How does Sandbox work?

At its most elemental form, Sandbox is about workflows. These YAML files are made up of a series of sequential steps. Each step runs its own individual Docker container with its own script. Each of these containers can be created from a different base image.

This makes it easier to use different options. StackFoundation says it is possible to define a workflow where developers run a bash script to build an application within an Ubuntu Linux container, and then in the next step, run a Node.js script for the functional tests within a Node.js container.

And so, Sandbox makes it possible to mix and match containers and styles, as reliable workflow steps.

According to StackFoundation, you should be able to design a workflow that automates any developmental task that you do regularly. Specifically, Sandbox can automate tasks like:

  • Building your application
  • Running unit tests, integration tests, functional tests, or any other automated tests
  • Debugging applications, along with all of its third-party dependencies (databases, etc.)
  • Deploying your application somewhere

Sandbox can help you create new scripted workflows, or make your existing scripts for these tasks more reliable.

SEE MORE: Containers offer great power but they also demand operational responsibility


Helpfully, Sandbox is also tiny. <200KB tiny. That means you can commit it to Git and have your workflows run directly from it, without any other software needed. Not even Docker!

Sandbox is an early release, so there are still some things that need working out. They’re looking for feedback from developers in order to improve the product. StackFoundation really wants to hear what you think, so they can improve it.

That said, it’s completely free and will continue to be in the future.


If you’re interested, you can find Sandbox here. Reviews and comments can be made via Twitter, Gitter, and GitHub.

Jane Elizabeth
Jane Elizabeth is an assistant editor for

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