Server Certificates

Server certificates are needed when you use secure socket connections - SSL/TLS.

For secure socket connection a proper certificate is needed. You can either generate your own self-signed certificate or obtain certificate from trusted third party organization.

Here are steps how to obtain certificate from a trusted organization.

Generating your Own Certificates

Self-signed certificates can be generated easily on a Linux system. Although it may not be considered a 'trusted' certificate authority, it can be useful to test server installations. We do not recommend regular use of self-signed certificates.

Note that Tigase v5.0 and later can automatically create self signed PEM files if needed. However we will cover doing this process by hand.

This tutorial assumes you are running a Linux-based operating system with access to command shell, and the 'Openssl' package is installed on the system.

The process takes the following steps: 1. Create a local private key. This file ends with .key extension. It is recommended to create a new private key for the process. 2. Generate a certificate request. This file ends with the .csr extension and is the file sent to the Certificate Authority to be signed. 3. CA signs private key. This can be done by your own computer, but can also be done by private CAs for a fee. 4. Results are obtained from the CA. This is a .crt file which contains a separate public certificate. 5. Combine the .csr and .crt file into a unified .pem file. Tigase requires keys to be non-password protected PEM files.

Generate local private key. 

openssl genrsa -out[] 1024

This command generates a private key using a 1024 bit RSA algorithm. -out designates the name of the file, in this case it will be The exact name is not important, and the file will be created in whatever directory you are currently in.

Generate a certificate request: 

openssl req -nodes -key -out

This command generates a certificate request using the file specified after -key, and the result file will be You will be asked a series of questions to generate the request.

Country Name (2 letter code) [AU]:AU
State or Province Name (full name) [Some-State]:Somestate
Locality Name (eg, city) []:Your city name
Organization Name (eg, company) [Internet Widgits Pty Ltd]:Company name
Organizational Unit Name (eg, section) []:Department or any unit
Common Name (eg, YOUR name) []:*
Email Address []

Please enter the following 'extra' attributes
to be sent with your certificate request
A challenge password []:
An optional company name []:

Sign the Certificate Request: Now the .csr file will be signed by a Certificate Authority. In this tutorial, we will be self-signging our certificate. This practice however is generally not recommended, and you will receive notifications that your certificate is not trusted. There are commercial offers from companies to sign your certificate from trusted sources. Please see the Certificate From Other Providers section for more information.

openssl x509 -req -days 365 -in -signkey -out

This command signs the certificate for 365 days and generates the file. You can, of course use any number of days you like.

Generate PEM file. You should now have the following files in the working directory: ..\

cat >

If the certificate is issued by third-party authority you will have to attach the certificate chain, that being certificate of the authority who has generated your certificate. You normally need to obtain certificates for your chain from the authority who has generated your certificate. For example, if you have a certificate from XMPP federation you need to download StartCom root certificate and intermediate ICA certificate. In such cases the pem file is created using following command:

cat ca.crt >

The result file should looks similar to:


For Tigase server as well as many other servers (Apache 2.x), the order is following; your domain certificate, your private key, authority issuing your certificate, root certificate.

Note! Tigase requires full certificate chain in PEM file (described above)! Different applications may require pem file with certificates and private key in different order. So the same file may not be necessarily used by other services like Web server or e-mail server. Currently, Tigase can automatically sort certificates in PEM file while loading it.