openssl - OpenSSL command line tool
openssl command [ options ... ] [ parameters ... ]
openssl list -standard-commands | -digest-commands | -cipher-commands | -cipher-algorithms | -digest-algorithms | -mac-algorithms | -public-key-algorithms
openssl no-XXX [ options ]
OpenSSL is a cryptography toolkit implementing the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL v2/v3) and Transport Layer Security (TLS v1) network protocols and related cryptography standards required by them.
The openssl program is a command line tool for using the various cryptography functions of OpenSSL's crypto library from the shell. It can be used for
o Creation and management of private keys, public keys and parameters o Public key cryptographic operations o Creation of X.509 certificates, CSRs and CRLs o Calculation of Message Digests and Message Authentication Codes o Encryption and Decryption with Ciphers o SSL/TLS Client and Server Tests o Handling of S/MIME signed or encrypted mail o Timestamp requests, generation and verification
The openssl program provides a rich variety of commands (command in the "SYNOPSIS" above). Each command can have many options and argument parameters, shown above as options and parameters.
Detailed documentation and use cases for most standard subcommands are available (e.g., openssl-x509(1)).
Many commands use an external configuration file for some or all of their arguments and have a -config option to specify that file. The default name of the file is openssl.cnf in the default certificate storage area, which can be determined from the openssl-version(1) command. The environment variable OPENSSL_CONF can be used to specify a different location of the file. See openssl-env(7).
The list options -standard-commands, -digest-commands, and -cipher-commands output a list (one entry per line) of the names of all standard commands, message digest commands, or cipher commands, respectively, that are available.
The list parameters -cipher-algorithms, -digest-algorithms, and -mac-algorithms list all cipher, message digest, and message authentication code names, one entry per line. Aliases are listed as:
from => to
The list parameter -public-key-algorithms lists all supported public key algorithms.
The command no-XXX tests whether a command of the specified name is available. If no command named XXX exists, it returns 0 (success) and prints no-XXX; otherwise it returns 1 and prints XXX. In both cases, the output goes to stdout and nothing is printed to stderr. Additional command line arguments are always ignored. Since for each cipher there is a command of the same name, this provides an easy way for shell scripts to test for the availability of ciphers in the openssl program. (no-XXX is not able to detect pseudo-commands such as quit, list, or no-XXX itself.)
Parse an ASN.1 sequence.
Certificate Authority (CA) Management.
Cipher Suite Description Determination.
CMS (Cryptographic Message Syntax) utility.
Certificate Revocation List (CRL) Management.
CRL to PKCS#7 Conversion.
Message Digest calculation. MAC calculations are superseded by openssl-mac(1).
Diffie-Hellman Parameter Management. Obsoleted by openssl-dhparam(1).
DSA Data Management.
EC (Elliptic curve) key processing.
EC parameter manipulation and generation.
Encryption, decryption, and encoding.
Engine (loadable module) information and manipulation.
Error Number to Error String Conversion.
Generation of Diffie-Hellman Parameters. Obsoleted by openssl-dhparam(1).
Generation of Private Key or Parameters.
Generation of RSA Private Key. Superseded by openssl-genpkey(1).
Display diverse information built into the OpenSSL libraries.
Key Derivation Functions.
Message Authentication Code Calculation.
Create or examine a Netscape certificate sequence.
Online Certificate Status Protocol utility.
Generation of hashed passwords.
PKCS#12 Data Management.
PKCS#7 Data Management.
PKCS#8 format private key conversion tool.
Public and private key management.
Public key algorithm parameter management.
Public key algorithm cryptographic operation utility.
Compute prime numbers.
Generate pseudo-random bytes.
Create symbolic links to certificate and CRL files named by the hash values.
PKCS#10 X.509 Certificate Signing Request (CSR) Management.
RSA key management.
RSA utility for signing, verification, encryption, and decryption. Superseded by openssl-pkeyutl(1).
This implements a generic SSL/TLS client which can establish a transparent connection to a remote server speaking SSL/TLS. It's intended for testing purposes only and provides only rudimentary interface functionality but internally uses mostly all functionality of the OpenSSL ssl library.
This implements a generic SSL/TLS server which accepts connections from remote clients speaking SSL/TLS. It's intended for testing purposes only and provides only rudimentary interface functionality but internally uses mostly all functionality of the OpenSSL ssl library. It provides both an own command line oriented protocol for testing SSL functions and a simple HTTP response facility to emulate an SSL/TLS-aware webserver.
SSL Connection Timer.
SSL Session Data Management.
S/MIME mail processing.
Algorithm Speed Measurement.
SPKAC printing and generating utility.
Maintain SRP password file.
Utility to list and display certificates, keys, CRLs, etc.
Time Stamping Authority tool (client/server).
X.509 Certificate Verification.
OpenSSL Version Information.
X.509 Certificate Data Management.
Message Digest Commands
SHA-2 224 Digest
SHA-2 256 Digest
SHA-2 384 Digest
SHA-2 512 Digest
SHA-3 224 Digest
SHA-3 256 Digest
SHA-3 384 Digest
SHA-3 512 Digest
SHA-3 SHAKE128 Digest
SHA-3 SHAKE256 Digest
Encryption, Decryption, and Encoding Commands
The following aliases provide convenient access to the most used encodings and ciphers.
Depending on how OpenSSL was configured and built, not all ciphers listed here may be present. See openssl-enc(1) for more information.
- aes128, aes-128-cbc, aes-128-cfb, aes-128-ctr, aes-128-ecb, aes-128-ofb
- aes192, aes-192-cbc, aes-192-cfb, aes-192-ctr, aes-192-ecb, aes-192-ofb
- aes256, aes-256-cbc, aes-256-cfb, aes-256-ctr, aes-256-ecb, aes-256-ofb
- aria128, aria-128-cbc, aria-128-cfb, aria-128-ctr, aria-128-ecb, aria-128-ofb
- aria192, aria-192-cbc, aria-192-cfb, aria-192-ctr, aria-192-ecb, aria-192-ofb
- aria256, aria-256-cbc, aria-256-cfb, aria-256-ctr, aria-256-ecb, aria-256-ofb
- bf, bf-cbc, bf-cfb, bf-ecb, bf-ofb
- camellia128, camellia-128-cbc, camellia-128-cfb, camellia-128-ctr, camellia-128-ecb, camellia-128-ofb
- camellia192, camellia-192-cbc, camellia-192-cfb, camellia-192-ctr, camellia-192-ecb, camellia-192-ofb
- camellia256, camellia-256-cbc, camellia-256-cfb, camellia-256-ctr, camellia-256-ecb, camellia-256-ofb
- cast, cast-cbc
- cast5-cbc, cast5-cfb, cast5-ecb, cast5-ofb
- des, des-cbc, des-cfb, des-ecb, des-ede, des-ede-cbc, des-ede-cfb, des-ede-ofb, des-ofb
- des3, desx, des-ede3, des-ede3-cbc, des-ede3-cfb, des-ede3-ofb
- idea, idea-cbc, idea-cfb, idea-ecb, idea-ofb
- rc2, rc2-cbc, rc2-cfb, rc2-ecb, rc2-ofb
- rc5, rc5-cbc, rc5-cfb, rc5-ecb, rc5-ofb
- seed, seed-cbc, seed-cfb, seed-ecb, seed-ofb
- sm4, sm4-cbc, sm4-cfb, sm4-ctr, sm4-ecb, sm4-ofb
Details of which options are available depend on the specific command. This section describes some common options with common behavior.
Provides a terse summary of all options. If an option takes an argument, the "type" of argument is also given.
This terminates the list of options. It is mostly useful if any filename parameters start with a minus sign:
openssl verify [flags...] -- -cert1.pem...
Several OpenSSL commands can take input or generate output in a variety of formats. The list of acceptable formats, and the default, is described in each command documentation. The list of formats is described below. Both uppercase and lowercase are accepted.
A binary format, encoded or parsed according to Distinguished Encoding Rules (DER) of the ASN.1 data language.
Used to specify that the cryptographic material is in an OpenSSL engine. An engine must be configured or specified using the -engine option. In addition, the -input flag can be used to name a specific object in the engine. A password, such as the -passin flag often must be specified as well.
A DER-encoded file containing a PKCS#12 object. It might be necessary to provide a decryption password to retrieve the private key.
A text format defined in IETF RFC 1421 and IETF RFC 7468. Briefly, this is a block of base-64 encoding (defined in IETF RFC 4648), with specific lines used to mark the start and end:
Text before the BEGIN line is ignored. ----- BEGIN object-type ----- OT43gQKBgQC/2OHZoko6iRlNOAQ/tMVFNq7fL81GivoQ9F1U0Qr+DH3ZfaH8eIkX xT0ToMPJUzWAn8pZv0snA0um6SIgvkCuxO84OkANCVbttzXImIsL7pFzfcwV/ERK UM6j0ZuSMFOCr/lGPAoOQU0fskidGEHi1/kW+suSr28TqsyYZpwBDQ== ----- END object-type ----- Text after the END line is also ignored
The object-type must match the type of object that is expected. For example a
BEGIN X509 CERTIFICATEwill not match if the command is trying to read a private key. The types supported include:
ANY PRIVATE KEY CERTIFICATE CERTIFICATE REQUEST CMS DH PARAMETERS DSA PARAMETERS DSA PUBLIC KEY EC PARAMETERS EC PRIVATE KEY ECDSA PUBLIC KEY ENCRYPTED PRIVATE KEY PARAMETERS PKCS #7 SIGNED DATA PKCS7 PRIVATE KEY PUBLIC KEY RSA PRIVATE KEY SSL SESSION PARAMETERS TRUSTED CERTIFICATE X509 CRL X9.42 DH PARAMETERS
The following legacy object-type's are also supported for compatibility with earlier releases:
DSA PRIVATE KEY NEW CERTIFICATE REQUEST RSA PUBLIC KEY X509 CERTIFICATE
An S/MIME object as described in IETF RFC 8551. Earlier versions were known as CMS and are compatible. Note that the parsing is simple and might fail to parse some legal data.
The options to specify the format are as follows. Refer to the individual manpage to see which options are accepted.
- -inform format, -outform format
The format of the input or output streams.
- -keyform format
Format of a private key input source.
- -CRLform format
Format of a CRL input source.
Pass Phrase Options
Several commands accept password arguments, typically using -passin and -passout for input and output passwords respectively. These allow the password to be obtained from a variety of sources. Both of these options take a single argument whose format is described below. If no password argument is given and a password is required then the user is prompted to enter one: this will typically be read from the current terminal with echoing turned off.
Note that character encoding may be relevant, please see passphrase-encoding(7).
The actual password is password. Since the password is visible to utilities (like 'ps' under Unix) this form should only be used where security is not important.
Obtain the password from the environment variable var. Since the environment of other processes is visible on certain platforms (e.g. ps under certain Unix OSes) this option should be used with caution.
The first line of pathname is the password. If the same pathname argument is supplied to -passin and -passout arguments then the first line will be used for the input password and the next line for the output password. pathname need not refer to a regular file: it could for example refer to a device or named pipe.
Read the password from the file descriptor number. This can be used to send the data via a pipe for example.
Read the password from standard input.
Trusted Certificate Options
Part of validating a certificate includes verifying that the chain of CA's can be traced up to an existing trusted root. The following options specify how to list the trusted roots, also known as trust anchors. A collection of trusted roots is called a trust store.
Note that OpenSSL does not provide a default set of trust anchors. Many Linux distributions include a system default and configure OpenSSL to point to that. Mozilla maintains an influential trust store that can be found at https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/about/governance/policies/security-group/certs/.
- -CAfile file
Load the specified file which contains one or more PEM-format certificates of CA's that are trusted.
Do not load the default file of trusted certificates.
- -CApath dir
Use the specified directory as a list of trust certificates. That is, files should be named with the hash of the X.509 SubjectName of each certificate. This is so that the library can extract the IssuerName, hash it, and directly lookup the file to get the issuer certificate. See openssl-rehash(1) for information on creating this type of directory.
Do not use the default directory of trusted certificates.
- -CAstore uri
Use uri as a store of trusted CA certificates. The URI may indicate a single certificate, as well as a collection of them. With URIs in the
file:scheme, this acts as -CAfile or -CApath, depending on if the URI indicates a single file or directory. See ossl_store-file(7) for more information on the
Do not use the default store.
Random State Options
Prior to OpenSSL 3.0, it was common for applications to store information about the state of the random-number generator in a file that was loaded at startup and rewritten upon exit. On modern operating systems, this is generally no longer necessary as OpenSSL will seed itself from the appropriate CPU flags, device files, and so on. These flags are still supported for special platforms or circumstances that might require them.
It is generally an error to use the same seed file more than once and every use of -rand should be paired with -writerand.
- -rand files
A file or files containing random data used to seed the random number generator. Multiple files can be specified separated by an OS-dependent character. The separator is
,for OpenVMS, and
:for all others. Another way to specify multiple files is to repeat this flag with different filenames.
- -writerand file
Writes the seed data to the specified file upon exit. This file can be used in a subsequent command invocation.
Extended Verification Options
Sometimes there may be more than one certificate chain leading to an end-entity certificate. This usually happens when a root or intermediate CA signs a certificate for another a CA in other organization. Another reason is when a CA might have intermediates that use two different signature formats, such as a SHA-1 and a SHA-256 digest.
The following options can be used to provide data that will allow the OpenSSL command to generate an alternative chain.
Specify whether the application should build the certificate chain to be provided to the server for the extra certificates via the -xkey, -xcert, and -xchain options.
- -xkey infile, -xcert infile, -xchain
Specify an extra certificate, private key and certificate chain. These behave in the same manner as the -cert, -key and -cert_chain options. When specified, the callback returning the first valid chain will be in use by the client.
- -xcertform DER|PEM, -xkeyform DER|PEM
The input format for the extra certificate and key, respectively. See "Format Options" in openssl(1) for details.
Name Format Options
OpenSSL provides fine-grain control over how the subject and issuer DN's are displayed. This is specified by using the -nameopt option, which takes a comma-separated list of options from the following set. An option may be preceeded by a minus sign,
-, to turn it off. The default value is
oneline. The first four are the most commonly used.
Display the name using an old format from previous OpenSSL versions.
Display the name using the format defined in RFC 2253. It is equivalent to esc_2253, esc_ctrl, esc_msb, utf8, dump_nostr, dump_unknown, dump_der, sep_comma_plus, dn_rev and sname.
Display the name in one line, using a format that is more readable RFC 2253. It is equivalent to esc_2253, esc_ctrl, esc_msb, utf8, dump_nostr, dump_der, use_quote, sep_comma_plus_space, space_eq and sname options.
Display the name using multiple lines. It is equivalent to esc_ctrl, esc_msb, sep_multiline, space_eq, lname and align.
Escape the "special" characters in a field, as required by RFC 2253. That is, any of the characters
#at the beginning of a string and leading or trailing spaces.
Escape the "special" characters in a field as required by RFC 2254 in a field. That is, the NUL character and and of
Escape non-printable ASCII characters, codes less than 0x20 (space) or greater than 0x7F (DELETE). They are displayed using RFC 2253
\XXnotation where XX are the two hex digits representing the character value.
Escape any characters with the most significant bit set, that is with values larger than 127, as described in esc_ctrl.
Escapes some characters by surrounding the entire string with quotation marks,
". Without this option, individual special characters are preceeded with a backslash character,
Convert all strings to UTF-8 format first as required by RFC 2253. If the output device is UTF-8 compatible, then using this option (and not setting esc_msb) may give the correct display of multibyte characters. If this option is not set, then multibyte characters larger than 0xFF will be output as
\UXXXXfor 16 bits or
\WXXXXXXXXfor 32 bits. In addition, any UTF8Strings will be converted to their character form first.
This option does not attempt to interpret multibyte characters in any way. That is, the content octets are merely dumped as though one octet represents each character. This is useful for diagnostic purposes but will result in rather odd looking output.
Display the type of the ASN1 character string before the value, such as
BMPSTRING: Hello World.
Any fields that would be output in hex format are displayed using the DER encoding of the field. If not set, just the content octets are displayed. Either way, the #XXXX... format of RFC 2253 is used.
Dump non-character strings, such as ASN.1 OCTET STRING. If this option is not set, then non character string types will be displayed as though each content octet represents a single character.
Dump all fields. When this used with dump_der, this allows the DER encoding of the structure to be unambiguously determined.
Dump any field whose OID is not recognised by OpenSSL.
- sep_comma_plus, sep_comma_plus_space, sep_semi_plus_space, sep_multiline
Specify the field separators. The first word is used between the Relative Distinguished Names (RDNs) and the second is between multiple Attribute Value Assertions (AVAs). Multiple AVAs are very rare and their use is discouraged. The options ending in "space" additionally place a space after the separator to make it more readable. The sep_multiline starts each field on its own line, and uses "plus space" for the AVA separator. It also indents the fields by four characters. The default value is sep_comma_plus_space.
Reverse the fields of the DN as required by RFC 2253. This also reverses the order of multiple AVAs in a field, but this is permissible as there is no ordering on values.
- nofname, sname, lname, oid
Specify how the field name is displayed. nofname does not display the field at all. sname uses the "short name" form (CN for commonName for example). lname uses the long form. oid represents the OID in numerical form and is useful for diagnostic purpose.
Align field values for a more readable output. Only usable with sep_multiline.
Places spaces round the equal sign,
=, character which follows the field name.
TLS Version Options
Several commands use SSL, TLS, or DTLS. By default, the commands use TLS and clients will offer the lowest and highest protocol version they support, and servers will pick the highest version that the client offers that is also supported by the server.
The options below can be used to limit which protocol versions are used, and whether TCP (SSL and TLS) or UDP (DTLS) is used. Note that not all protocols and flags may be available, depending on how OpenSSL was built.
- -ssl3, -tls1, -tls1_1, -tls1_2, -tls1_3, -no_ssl3, -no_tls1, -no_tls1_1, -no_tls1_2, -no_tls1_3
These options require or disable the use of the specified SSL or TLS protocols. When a specific TLS version is required, only that version will be offered or accepted. Only one specific protocol can be given and it cannot be combined with any of the no_ options.
- -dtls, -dtls1, -dtls1_2
These options specify to use DTLS instead of DLTS. With -dtls, clients will negotiate any supported DTLS protocol version. Use the -dtls1 or -dtls1_2 options to support only DTLS1.0 or DTLS1.2, respectively.
- -engine id
Use the engine identified by id and use all the methods it implements (algorithms, key storage, etc.), unless specified otherwise in the command-specific documentation or it is configured to do so, as described in "Engine Configuration Module" in config(5).
The OpenSSL library can be take some configuration parameters from the environment. Some of these variables are listed below. For information about specific commands, see openssl-engine(1), openssl-provider(1), openssl-rehash(1), and tsget(1).
For information about the use of environment variables in configuration, see "ENVIRONMENT" in config(5).
For information about all environment variables used by the OpenSSL libraries, see openssl-env(7).
Enable tracing output of OpenSSL library, by name. This output will only make sense if you know OpenSSL internals well. Also, it might not give you any output at all, depending on how OpenSSL was built.
The value is a comma separated list of names, with the following available:
The tracing functionality.
The function that is used by RSA, DSA (etc) code to select registered ENGINEs, cache defaults and functional references (etc), will generate debugging summaries.
Reference counts in the ENGINE structure will be monitored with a line of generated for each change.
PKCS#5 v2 keygen.
PKCS#12 key generation.
Generates the complete policy tree at various point during X.509 v3 policy evaluation.
openssl-asn1parse(1), openssl-ca(1), openssl-ciphers(1), openssl-cms(1), openssl-crl(1), openssl-crl2pkcs7(1), openssl-dgst(1), openssl-dhparam(1), openssl-dsa(1), openssl-dsaparam(1), openssl-ec(1), openssl-ecparam(1), openssl-enc(1), openssl-engine(1), openssl-errstr(1), openssl-gendsa(1), openssl-genpkey(1), openssl-genrsa(1), openssl-kdf(1), openssl-mac(1), openssl-nseq(1), openssl-ocsp(1), openssl-passwd(1), openssl-pkcs12(1), openssl-pkcs7(1), openssl-pkcs8(1), openssl-pkey(1), openssl-pkeyparam(1), openssl-pkeyutl(1), openssl-prime(1), openssl-rand(1), openssl-rehash(1), openssl-req(1), openssl-rsa(1), openssl-rsautl(1), openssl-s_client(1), openssl-s_server(1), openssl-s_time(1), openssl-sess_id(1), openssl-smime(1), openssl-speed(1), openssl-spkac(1), openssl-srp(1), openssl-storeutl(1), openssl-ts(1), openssl-verify(1), openssl-version(1), openssl-x509(1), config(5), crypto(7), openssl-env(7). ssl(7), x509v3_config(5)
The list -XXX-algorithms options were added in OpenSSL 1.0.0; For notes on the availability of other commands, see their individual manual pages.
Copyright 2000-2019 The OpenSSL Project Authors. All Rights Reserved.
Licensed under the Apache License 2.0 (the "License"). You may not use this file except in compliance with the License. You can obtain a copy in the file LICENSE in the source distribution or at https://www.openssl.org/source/license.html.