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To generate a Certificate Signing Request (CSR), perform the following steps:

PART 1: Generating the Key Pair

  1. The utility "OpenSSL" is used to generate both Private Key (key) and Certificate Signing request (CSR). OpenSSL is usually installed under /usr/local/ssl/bin. If you have a custom install, you will need to adjust these instructions appropriately.
  2. Type the following command at the prompt:
    genrsa –des3 –out www.mydomain.com.key 2048

    Note: If you do not wish to use a Pass Phrase, do not use the -des3 command. It will however leave the private key unprotected.

  3. Enter the PEM Pass Phrase (This MUST be remembered)


  4. This will generate a 2048 RSA Private key, and stores it in the file www.mydomain.com.key.

PART 2: Generating the CSR

  1. Type the following command at the prompt:
    req –new –key www.mydomain.com.key –out www.mydomain.com.csr

    Note: You will be prompted for the PEM Pass Phrase if you included the "-des3" command. Type it in now.


    NOTE: There is a known issue with Apache/OpenSSL Windows Based Installations. If you recieve an error with the above command, Please enter the following:
    req -new -key www.mydomain.com.key -out www.mydomain.com.csr -config openssl.cnf

  2. Input the information for the Certificate Signing Request. This information will be displayed in the certificate.

    Note: The following characters can not be accepted: < > ~ ! @ # $ % ^ * / \ ( ) ?.,&

    • Country Name (2 letter code) [AU]:GB
    • State or Province Name (full name) [Some-State]:London
    • Locality Name (eg, city) []:London
    • Organization Name (eg, company) [Internet Widgits Pty Ltd]:Global Sign
    • Organizational Unit Name (eg, section) []:IT
    • Common Name (eg, YOUR name) []:www.globalsign.net (Must be the FQDN - Fully Qualifed Domain Name)

    Note: DO NOT Enter the following:

    • Email Address []:
    • A challenge password []:
    • An optional company name []:


  3. Please verify the CSR, to insure all information is correct. Use the following command:
    req -noout -text -in www.mydomain.com.csr
  4. The CSR will now be created, and can be submitted via the website

You are now ready to submit your CSR for the certificate you wish to install.


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