Certificate Sanity Checker
Switch branches/tags
Nothing to show
Clone or download
Fetching latest commit…
Cannot retrieve the latest commit at this time.
Failed to load latest commit information.


certsan: Certificate Sanity Checker

This is a little helper script I wrote to help me verify that certificates and private keys I get sent by other people actually fit together. Especially with people unfamiliar with certificates and cryptography, mixups are easy and easy to miss.

More than once I noticed that a private key was not the right one for a given certificate only when e. g. haproxy complained about it.


This was written on a Mac, with Ruby 2.0. I do not see why it would not work on any other platform as well, but it has never been tested. You also need the OpenSSL binary openssl on your search path.

What does it do?

The script will use OpenSSL to get the modulus from the given key, certificate and optionally signing request and compare them. If one of them does not match the other(s), the script will exit with a non-zero return code. In verbse mode you get MD5 hashes of the moduli it found.


Key and certificate files are mandatory. The CSR is optional. If it is provided it must match the key and certificate modulus.

➜  certsan -h
Usage: certsan OPTIONS
    -c, --crt CRTFILE                Certificate (CRT) file (path)
    -k, --key KEYFILE                Key file (path)
    -r, --csr CSRFILE                [Optional] Certificate Signing Request (CSR) file (path)
    -v, --verbose                    Display more stuff.

Common options:
    -h, --help                       Show this message

Sample output

Failed Check

➜  certsan -v -c www.example.com.crt -k www.example.com.key -r www.example.com.csr
Certificate Modulus (md5): 5b22d155d7392ccdeb02532eeb5f9733
Key Modulus         (md5): e9bd187b826442e02632e548df3e10a9
CSR Modulus         (md5): 5b22d155d7392ccdeb02532eeb5f9733

The output shows that the certificate was apparently issued based on the provided CSR, but the private key file does not match the certificate.

Successful check

➜  certsan -v -c www.example.com.crt -k www.example.com.key -r www.example.com.csr
Certificate Modulus (md5): 1df8459f2aae9698e8ee9373d136ccbc
Key Modulus         (md5): 1df8459f2aae9698e8ee9373d136ccbc
CSR Modulus         (md5): 1df8459f2aae9698e8ee9373d136ccbc


The files are passed to the OpenSSL x509, rsa and req commands respectively. They must be parseable by these commands.