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Client Certificates Authentication

Posted on 2004-08-04
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Last Modified: 2010-04-11
Does anyone know what this means and how to fix it.  I'm using a client certificate to call a server and I get this response:

No common name contained in certificate distinguished name -
Common name not found in distinguished name:

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Question by:vinny45
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by:chris_calabrese
ID: 11720014
The distinguished name, or DN, is the thing that looks something like
<myname>.<mycompany>.<mycountry> (chris_calabrese.mycompany.us)

The common name, or CN, is a short "handle" that usually gets used in practice to refer to the certificate (probably chris_calabrese in the above).

Sounds like your certificates don't have the CN field filled in.
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Author Comment

by:vinny45
ID: 11720640
How do I find out to verify this.
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by:chris_calabrese
ID: 11720836
Never done that before. I'd google for tools/info to dissect an X.509 cert and tell you what's inside.
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Expert Comment

by:Tim Holman
ID: 11721104
Where did you get the cert from ?  What type of cert is it ? What client are you using, and what server ?
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Author Comment

by:vinny45
ID: 11721258
its an intuit(quickbooks)signed client certificate. I'm using an asp.net application as a client to connect to a server. So I have Window 2003 Server with the client Cert installed into the Local_machine\personal store. I exported a DER encoded binary file without the private keys so my asp.net application can use it using the x509Certificate class and httpWebRequest class to send the data and cert to an Intuit server which i believe uses some open source machine(openssl to read the cert or something i think)

what do you think.

btw. Intuit asked for a 64 base version of my cert to test with and it worked fine, but in my asp.net app i use the DER version. Is it possible that their server cannot read my Cert because of the format. btw .net does not support 64 Base encoded files

hopefully i make sense
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Author Comment

by:vinny45
ID: 11721686
i meant 64 base encoded certs
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Expert Comment

by:chris_calabrese
ID: 11722462
I doubt it's the encoding. However, if the cert comes from intuit, it's possible that they don't provide a CN in their cert's. It wouldn't be a problem for their own apps since they probably map the DN to the account.
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Accepted Solution

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ahoffmann earned 500 total points
ID: 11729536
win2k3 should be able to show the cert's details
If it fails (I don't comment M$ tools:), then use openssl to check your cert http://www.openssl.org/
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