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Manage Pods

Learn how to start, stop, and manage Pods with RunPod, including creating and terminating Pods, and using the command line interface to manage your Pods.


If you are using the RunPod CLI, you'll need to set your API key in the configuration.

runpodctl config --apiKey $RUNPOD_API_KEY

Replace $RUNPOD_API_KEY with your RunPod API key.

Once your API key is set, you can manage your infrastructure.

If you're not sure which Pod meets your needs, see Choose a Pod.

Create Pods

  1. Navigate to Pods and select + Deploy.
  2. Choose between GPU and CPU.
  3. Customize your an instance by setting up the following:
    1. (optional) Specify a Network volume.
    2. Select an instance type. For example, A40.
    3. (optional) Provide a template. For example, RunPod Pytorch.
    4. (GPU only) Specify your compute count.
  4. Review your configuration and select Deploy On-Demand.

RunPod supports custom templates that allow you to specify your own Dockerfile. By creating a Dockerfile, you can build a custom Docker image with your specific dependencies and configurations. This ensures that your applications are reliable and portable across different environments.

Charges occur after the Pod build is complete.

Stop a Pod

  1. Click the stop icon.
  2. Confirm by clicking the Stop Pod button.

Stop a Pod after a specific time

You can also stop a Pod after a specific amount of time. For example, the following command sleeps for 2 hours, and then stops the Pod.

Use the following command to stop a Pod after 2 hours:

sleep 2h; runpodctl stop pod $RUNPOD_POD_ID &

This command uses sleep to wait for 2 hours before executing the runpodctl stop pod command to stop the Pod. The & at the end runs the command in the background, allowing you to continue using the SSH session.


You are charged for storing idle Pods. If you do not need to store your Pod, be sure to terminate it next.

Start a Pod

You can resume a pod that has been stopped.

  1. Navigate to the Pods page.
  2. Select your Pod you want to resume.
  3. Select Start.

Your Pod will resume.

Terminate a Pod


Terminating a Pod permanently deletes all data outside your Network volume. Be sure you've saved any data you want to access again.

  1. Select the hamburger menu at the bottom of the Pod you want to terminate.
  2. Click Terminate Pod.
  3. Confirm by clicking the Yes button.

List Pods

If you're using the command line, enter the following command to list your pods.

runpodctl get pod