OpenSSL Show Certificate Info

by Mike Lugar
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You can easily use OpenSSL on your server to show certificate info. This can be critical to ensure that the information is correct and also to verify your cert files. When you regularly view a certificate, it does not contain much usable information as it is encrypted. However, you can decrypt the certificate to view the full contents.

The decrypted certificate will contain things like Signature Algorithm, Issuer, Validity, Key Algorithm, etc. All of these are useful when troubleshooting certificate issues, verifying installation, etc.

OpenSSL Command

Below is the OpenSSL command you can use to decrypt a SSL certificate on your server (replace certificate.crt with the path/name of your certificate):

Decode/Decrypt Certificate Online

Alternatively, you can decode an SSL certificate online by using a tool such as the SSL Shopper Certificate Decoder. You can easily copy and paste your encrypted certificate into the provided box and it will perform the same output as the OpenSSl Command above.

It is important to note that one must always be cautious when sharing SSL certificate files as the private key must be kept secure. It should not be shared with anyone as to not compromise your certificate and overall security of your site.

Mike Lugar
Mike is the managing member at MSLtek and is an avid web consultant and web developer. He enjoys solving complex problems and helping businesses connect with technology.
Posted on November 6, 2016

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