How to Generate Certificate Signing Request (CSR) in Lotus Domino 6.x and 7.x


Before you request a certificate from a CA, you must create a key ring file to store the certificates. A key ring file is a binary file that is password-protected and stored on the server's hard drive. When you create a server key ring file (.KYR), Domino generates an unsigned server certificate and automatically includes several trusted root certificates. The unsigned server certificate is not valid until it is signed by a certifier. Domino also creates a stash file (.STH) using the same name as the key ring file, but with the file extension .STH. Domino uses the stash file to store the key ring file password for unattended access to the server key ring file. 

Step 1: Creating a server key ring file

1.    From the Notes client open the Server Certificate Admin application on the server for which you want to enable SSL.

2.    Click Create Key Ring

3.    Complete the following fields: 

- Key Ring File Name

- Key Ring Password

- Key Size: The key size must be 2048 bits

- Common Name: The fully-qualified domain name to which your certificate will be issued (e.g., or *

- Organization: The full legal name of your company. If you are issuing the cert to an individual, the full legal name of that person.

- Organizational Unit: If you belong to a sub-unit within your organization, enter that here (e.g., Marketing, IT, etc.).

- City or Locality: Usually the city of your organization's main office, or a main office for your organization.

- State or Province: Enter your state or province as above.

- Country: Enter the two-character abbreviation of country in which organization resides (e.g., GB, US) 

4.    When you click to continue, you should get a message that your key ring file has been created. 

5.    Click Create Key Ring

6.    After you read the information about the key ring file and distinguished name, click OK

7.    Lotus Notes creates the key ring file and stash (.STH) file and places them in the 

       Lotus Notes data directory on the client machine used to create the key ring.

8.    Copy the key ring file and stash (.STH) file to the Domino data directory on the server.

9.    Verify your CSR

Caution: You must ensure that the key ring password in the stash file is protected. 

The key ring file password is altered in the stash file so that it cannot be recognized by a casual observer, but it is not encrypted. You should not allow unauthorized persons access to either the stash file or the key ring file. In the normal course of operation, only the server itself should have access to those files. 

However, administrators may also need permission to remove or replace the files. As with all server resources, managing proper file permissions and protections is vital to the security of the system.

Step 2: Requesting a SSL server certificate

1.    Make sure you already created the server key ring file and mapped a drive to the directory that contains the server key ring file

2.    From the Notes client, open the Domino Directory of the server on which you want to create SSL

3.    Open the Server Certificate Admin application.

4.    Click Create Certificate Request 

5.    Complete these fields: 

- Key Ring File Name: The name of the server key ring file including the path to the file

- Log Certificate Request: Choose one: Yes (default) to log information in the Server Certificate Admin application or No to not log information.

- Method: Paste into form on CA's site 

6.    Click Create Certificate Request

7.    Enter the password for the server key ring file

8.    Copy the certificate request to the system Clipboard including the:

        -----Begin Certificate Request-----

                    [encoded data]

          -----End Certificate Request-----

9.    Proceed with Enrolment on RapidSSL website and submit the CSR request when required in the enrolment form.

For additional information, reference to IBM Lotus Domino server documentation (Click Security - SSL security - Setting up SSL).




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