Wednesday, September 30, 2009

CentOS: Setting up SSL Webserver

1. Getting the required software

# yum install mod_ssl openssl

2. Generate a self-signed certificate

--Generate private key
# openssl genrsa -out ca.key 1024

--Generate CSR
# openssl req -new -key ca.key -out ca.csr

Will ask your info:

Country CODE CA - Canada
You can find define at:
Company Ltd: LambertDatabase Inc.
Organizational section:

--Generate Self Signed Key
# openssl x509 -req -days 365 -in ca.csr -signkey ca.key -out ca.crt

--Move the files to the correct locations
# mv ca.crt /etc/pki/tls/certs
# mv ca.key /etc/pki/tls/private/ca.key
# mv ca.csr /etc/pki/tls/private/ca.csr

--Then we need to update the Apache SSL configuration file
# vi +/SSLCertificateFile /etc/httpd/conf.d/ssl.conf

SSLCertificateFile /etc/pki/tls/certs/ca.crt
SSLCertificateKeyFile /etc/pki/tls/private/ca.key

Quit and save the file and then restart Apache:
# service httpd restart

3. SELinux error

When you restart the service you may got:

Stopping httpd: [FAILED]
Starting httpd: Syntax error on line 112 of /etc/httpd/conf.d/ssl.conf:
SSLCertificateFile: file '/etc/pki/tls/certs/ca.crt' does not exist or is empty [FAILED]

To Fix this:

# chcon --reference=/etc/pki/tls/certs/ca-bundle.crt /etc/pki/tls/certs/ca.crt
# chcon --reference=/etc/pki/tls/private/localhost.key /etc/pki/tls/private/ca.key


In Firefox:
go to

You will got a security alert.
Accept and save it.

CentOS how to change hostname?
# Goto /etc/sysconfig/
# Type vi network
# Press i on the keyboard and change the HOSTNAME to your preferred servername
# Press ESC on the keybord
# Save the configuration by :wq!
# Reboot


Please feel free to ask any questions.


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  5. I added 2 commands to fix the error of not found certificate file, then restart apache. But its still failed. And got the same error: SSLCertificateFile: file '/ssl/bookstore.cert' does not exist or is empty
    Is there any one can help me to fix this?!