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Customizing the Lima instance for varying workloads

You can customize Lima instance, using YAML and yq.


  • To create a new instance:

    $ limactl create <instance>
  • To edit an existing instance:

    $ limactl edit <instance>

Some of the things you can edit:

  • Change the number of CPUs, the memory, and the disk size
  • Change the operating system (the Linux distribution)
  • Modify the cluster setup (the Kubernetes distribution)
  • Run both of container workloads and Kubernetes workloads


To find the location of the instance directory (Dir):

limactl list <instance> --format '{{.Dir}}'


You can install a container engine, in addition to the existing runtime.

For instance you can install Podman Engine, or you can install Docker Engine. After that you can port forward the socket, to the host Dir.

  • /var/run/docker.sock
  • /run/podman/podman.sock
export DOCKER_HOST="unix://{{.Dir}}/sock/docker.sock"
export CONTAINER_HOST="unix://{{.Dir}}/sock/podman.sock"


You can install Kubernetes, on top of the existing container engine.

For instance you can use CRI-O for Podman, or CRI-Dockerd for Docker. After that you can copy the kubeconfig.yaml file, to the host Dir.

  • /etc/rancher/k3s/k3s.yaml
  • /etc/kubernetes/admin.conf
export KUBECONFIG="{{.Dir}}/copied-from-guest/kubeconfig.yaml"