What are Certificates?

Posted on 2006-05-18
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2010-04-11
What is a certificate. I know that its some kind of binary file about the end use. But cirrectly what is it i dont know. Please send ur replies??
Question by:pradeep_brat
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Accepted Solution

PowerIT earned 200 total points
ID: 16708574
What you probably mean is a 'public key certificate' or indentity certificate.
This is used to identify something or someone in a digital way.
There are two implementation schemes: PKI (or Public Key Infrastructure) and a 'web of trust scheme'.
In a PKI a certificate is formal and verified, in a web of trust it is signed by the user or other users (=endorsed, less thrustworthy but easier to set up).
The contents of a certificate is a digital signature AND a public key AND an identity like name, organization etc...
PKI is based on public key cryptograpy.
Have a look at this article for an explanation how this works and ties together:


Author Comment

ID: 16709642
Ya i want to knw about PKI only. Any idea about SAML standards.???
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Expert Comment

ID: 16709775
? SAML is an authentication and authorization standard for single sign on. Has no relation with PKI.
There is an open source implementation: http://www.opensaml.org/


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