My goal is to run two Docker containers on separate networks and have my host (Ubuntu 22.04) perform NAT so that the first network can reach the second.

My setup:

docker network create network1
docker network create network2

docker run --rm -it --network network1 ubuntu:22.04 bash

# In other terminal
docker run --rm -it --network network2 ubuntu:22.04 bash

The first container has an address of and the second has an address of

Running ip addr on my host, I see that the interfaces are br-deadbeef and br-feedbeef, respectively.

I then run

echo 1 > /proc/sys/net/ipv4/ip_forward
iptables -A FORWARD -i br-deadbeef -o br-feedbeef -j ACCEPT
iptables -A FORWARD -i br-feedbeef -o br-deadbeef -m state --state RELATED,ESTABLISHED -j ACCEPT
iptables -t nat -A POSTROUTING -o br-feedbeef -j MASQUERADE

on the host as root.

However, ping from the first container doesn't succeed. Running Wireshark on the host shows the ICMP packet on the br-deadbeef network going from to but there's no reply.

What am I missing?

1 Answer 1


The issue is the following iptables rules:

Chain FORWARD (policy DROP)
target     prot opt source          destination
DOCKER-USER  all  --  anywhere          anywhere
DOCKER-ISOLATION-STAGE-1  all  --  anywhere          anywhere

Chain DOCKER-ISOLATION-STAGE-1 (1 references)
target     prot opt source          destination
DOCKER-ISOLATION-STAGE2  all  --  anywhere          anywhere

Chain DOCKER-ISOLATION-STAGE-2 (3 references)
target     prot opt source          destination
DROP       all  --  anywhere        anywhere

Chain DOCKER-USER (1 references)
target     prot opt source          destination
RETURN     all  --  anywhere        anywhere

If you run iptables with the verbose option (-v), you'll see that the DROP target under DOCKER-ISOLATION-STAGE-2 refers to the br-deadbeef interface (there's a DROP rule right under it for br-feedbeef).

Since you added your rules with -A, they were appended to the bottom of the chain which means that the jump to DOCKER-ISOLATION-STAGE-1 and hence to DOCKER-ISOLATION-STAGE-2 took priority.

A simple fix would be to add your rules with -I instead. This will insert them at the top of the chain.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .