Detailed Field Information Related Information Examples & Tutorials
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SSL Keys And Certs

Web Host gives you a convenient way to make your database accessible remotely using the Internet. However, information sent over the Internet must be encrypted to provide security. A Secure Socket Layer, or SSL, creates a secure communications channel between your Server and your client's browser and encrypts data that is transmitted.

Each Server that wants to use SSL needs to present a valid X.509 certificate to the client's browser. It also needs a private key to decrypt the incoming data. By default, these security files are created automatically for you when you open the Web Host. It is only necessary to start Web Host with the /W1s argument to enable SSL functionality.

Installing A Security Certificate

tip.gif It is highly recommended that you acquire a valid security certificate from a recognized Certificate Authority rather than relying on creating your own, self-signed certificates through SSL Keys and Certs.

To install the certificate returned to you from the Certificate Authority:

1. Shut down the Web Host.

2. Make copies of the webhost.crt, webhost.rsa, webhost.req and webhost.dh files.

3. Rename the *.crt file you received to webhost.crt, copy it to the CV11\bin folder.

4. Rename the *.key file you received to webhost.rsa, copy it to the CV11\bin folder.

5. Restart Web Host.

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Accessing SSL Keys And Certs

For your convenience, the SSL Keys And Certs form allows you to enter all the information needed if you want to update the security files for using Web Host in secure mode.

DO NOT use this feature to update certificates from a Certificate Authority!


SSL Keys and Certs form

The information entered in this form is used in the creation of RSA Private Keys, Certificates and Certificate Requests. Your personal information is displayed in the certificate that is created.


SSL Certificate

In the Details section of the certificate, the subject information displays details that you entered in the fields on the SSL Keys And Certs form.


SSL Certificate Subject Information

There is only one way to reach the SSL Keys and Certs screen.

1. Open Collect! as you would normally and stop at the Main Menu.

2. Select System from the top menu bar and then select Network and Environment from the drop-down choices. This will display a submenu of additional choices.

3. Select Security Certificates to open the SSL Keys And Certs form and enter the information needed to generate your certificate.

After you have entered your information:

Select the button labeled Generate Stunnel PEM File to create the stunnel.pem file in the location displayed to the left of the button. By default, this file contains the RSA Private Key, Certificate and DH parameters.

tip.gif If you select ADVANCED from the Generator Output Format pick list, other options are available and additional buttons become visible.

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Host To Make Cert For

Enter the Host Name to be used during the generation of certificate requests.

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State Or Province

Enter the state or province in which you reside.

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Organization

Enter your company name here.

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Email

Enter a valid email address to be used as a reference to contact you relating to your certificate.

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Country

Enter the two character code of the country you are in.

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City

Enter the name of your city here.

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Company Division

Enter the name of the section or division of your company that the certificate is being created for.

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Version X509

When submitting a certificate request to certain certificate authorities they may require a specific X.509 version. From the pick list, select the version to be used when generating a Certificate Request.

Version 1: Set Collect! to use Version 1 of the X.509 standard.

Version 3: Set Collect! to use Version 3 of the X.509 standard.

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Key Size

Select a size to specify the security strength of your Private Key. This value is in bits. Two choices are given. (A key size smaller than 1024 is a potential security risk, and larger than 2048 doesn't actually increase the security strength but just adds overhead.)

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Generator Output Format

Select one of the options from the pick list.

Basic:

Not needed.

This will produce an older style Stunnel PEM file which contains an RSA Private Key and Certificate.

Basic with DH:

Not needed.

This will produce an Stunnel PEM file which contains an RSA Private Key, Certificate, and DH Parameters. The DH Parameters are required when using the most recent version of Stunnel. For best security, please use the most recent Stunnel to patch any known vulnerabilities.

Advanced Settings:

Not needed.

Select this to view additional choices which allow you to generate each specific option individually and specify a unique file for each option, if necessary.

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Stunnel PEM File

Not needed.

This is the path where Collect! will produce the stunnel.pem file to be used directly with Stunnel.

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Generate Stunnel PEM File

Not needed.

Select this to generate the Stunnel PEM file in the location displayed in the Stunnel PEM file field. This file contains the RSA Private Key, Certificate and DH parameters.

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Advanced Settings

Not needed.

The Advanced Settings are visible only when you select "Advanced Settings" from the 'General output format' pick list. These may be used to create RSA Private Keys, Certificates, Certificate Requests and DH Parameters. If you already have your own Private Key, for instance, you may want to generate a Certificate Request to submit to a Certificate Authority.


Advanced Settings

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Rsa Private Key

Enter the location where your RSA Private Key will be created.

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Certificate Request

Enter the location where your Certificate Request will be created.

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Web Host Certificate

Enter the location where your Web Host Certificate will be created.

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Dh Parameter File

Not needed.

Enter the location where the file that stores your DH Parameters will be created.

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Generate Rsa Private Key

Select the Generate RSA Private Key button to create an RSA Private Key using the key size specified in the Key Size field.

This will produce a webhost.rsa file. This key will be stored in the location entered in the RSA Private Key field. This will overwrite any RSA Private Key (webhost.rsa) file in this location.

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Generate Certificate Request

Select the Generate Certificate Request button to create an X.509 Certificate Request using the RSA Private Key located in the RSA Private Key field.

This will produce a webhost.req file. This file will be created in the location entered in the Certificate Request field. This will overwrite any Certificate Request (webhost.req) file in this location.

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Sign Certificate Request

Select the Sign Certificate Request button to self sign the Certificate Request located in the Certificate Request field using the RSA Private Key located in the RSA Private Key field.

This will produce a webhost.crt file. This signed Certificate will be created in the location entered in the Web Host Certificate field. This will overwrite any Web Host Certificate (webhost.crt) file in this location.

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Generate Dh Parameters

Not needed.

Select the Generate DH Parameters button to generate Diffie-Hell man parameters.

This will produce a webhost.dh file in the location displayed in the 'DH parameter file' field.

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Viewing The Key And Certificate Files

When you use the SSL Keys And Certs function, files are produced in the folders that you specified in the SSL Keys and Certs screen.

The available options are:

  • webhost.req - the certificate request
  • webhost.rsa - the private key
  • webhost.crt - the signed certificate

The certificate (webhost.crt), may be viewed by selecting it.

You may view the contents of the request (webhost.req), and the key (webhost.rsa) files in a simple text editor.

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Creating A Third Party SSL Certificate For Web Host

Purchase an SSL Certificate from a 3rd Party Vendor.

Configure the Certificate by doing the following:

1. Open the webhost.req file with Windows© WordPad.

2. Copy the entire file.

3. Paste it into the Vendor's CSR box overwriting everything previously there.

4. Set the Server Type to Other.

5. Submit configuration.

When your Certificate is created, do the following to install it IF received by email:

1. Open the webhost.crt file with Windows© WordPad and delete the contents.

2. Open the email.

3. Copy the Certificate from Beginning to End.

tip.gif Do not copy the Intermediate Certificate Section if one is provided.

4. Paste the Certificate code into the webhost.crt and save the file.

5. If an Intermediate certificate is provided, copy the Certificate from Beginning to End.

6. Open Windows© WordPad as a new blank document.

7. Paste the certificate.

8. Save the file in the CV11/bin folder as intermediate.crt.

When your Certificate is created, do the following to install it IF received as a ZIP file:

1. Delete the webhost.crt file.

2. Open and Extract the ZIP File to the CV11/bin folder.

3. Rename the Certificate (usually named as hostdomain.crt) to webhost.crt.

4. If an Intermediate certificate is provided, leave it in the CV11/bin folder.

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Summary

The SSL Keys And Certs form enables you to update the security files used by Web Host when you enable secure mode by using the /W1s argument in the Web Host icon.

The information entered in this form is used in the creation of RSA Private Keys, Certificates and Certificate Requests.

warning.gif WARNING: Collect! is not responsible for the security of your data over the Internet. Tools provided are for your convenience. A qualified technician is required to ensure that they are used to your best advantage.

It is highly recommended that you acquire a valid security certificate from a recognized Certificate Authority rather than relying on creating your own, self-signed certificates through SSL Keys and Certs.

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See Also

- Trusted Hosts
- Web Host Topics

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