If you are working with SSL certificates, you might have come across the need to convert a .pem file to a .jks file. The OpenSSL command can help you achieve this conversion quickly and easily. In this article, we will explore the steps involved in converting a .pem file to a .jks file using the OpenSSL command.

What is a PEM file?

A PEM file is a format for storing an SSL certificate. It contains the public key certificate and the private key in the same file. PEM stands for Privacy Enhanced Mail, which was the original intended use for this file format. PEM files are Base64 encoded ASCII files and are human-readable.

What is a JKS file?

A JKS file is a Java KeyStore file that is used to store private keys, public keys, and SSL certificates. It is a proprietary format used by Java applications. A JKS file can contain multiple key entries and can be accessed programmatically using the Java KeyStore API.

Steps to convert PEM to JKS

To convert a .pem file to a .jks file, follow these steps:

  1. Ensure that OpenSSL is installed on your system. If you are using a Linux distribution, you can install OpenSSL using the package manager.

  2. Open a terminal window and navigate to the directory that contains the .pem file.

  3. Run the following command to convert the .pem file to a .der file:

    openssl x509 -outform der -in certificate.pem -out certificate.der

  4. Run the following command to convert the .der file to a .p12 file:

    openssl pkcs12 -export -in certificate.der -out certificate.p12

  5. Run the following command to convert the .p12 file to a .jks file:

    keytool -importkeystore -srckeystore certificate.p12 -srcstoretype pkcs12 -destkeystore certificate.jks -deststoretype JKS

FAQs for openssl command to convert pem to jks

What is openssl?

OpenSSL is an open-source implementation of the SSL and TLS protocols. It provides APIs for implementing cryptographic functions in your project, and it also ships with command-line tools that you can use to perform a variety of cryptographic operations.

What is a pem file?

PEM stands for Privacy Enhanced Mail, and it’s a widely used format for storing cryptographic keys and certificates. PEM files are usually base64-encoded and contain the key or certificate in plain text.

What is a jks file?

JKS stands for Java KeyStore, and it’s a format that’s used for storing cryptographic keys and certificates in Java applications. JKS files can contain both private and public keys, as well as certificates in X.509 format.

How do I convert a pem file to a jks file using openssl command?

To convert a PEM file to JKS format using the OpenSSL command, you can use the following command:

openssl pkcs12 -export -in certificate.pem -inkey privateKey.pem -out keystore.p12 -name “mykey” -passout pass:mypassword
keytool -importkeystore -srcstoretype PKCS12 -srckeystore keystore.p12 -destkeystore keystore.jks -deststoretype JKS -storepass mypassword -srcstorepass mypassword

This command first exports the certificate and private key from the PEM files to a PKCS#12 file, which is a standard format for storing cryptographic objects. Then it uses the keytool command to import the PKCS#12 file into a Java KeyStore in JKS format.

Do I need to install anything else besides OpenSSL to execute this command?

Yes, you also need to have the Java Development Kit (JDK) installed on your system, since the second part of the command uses the keytool command, which is part of the JDK.

What if I don’t have access to OpenSSL?

If you don’t have access to OpenSSL, you can use a different tool to convert the PEM file to a PKCS#12 file. For example, you can use the PKCS12-Converter tool that’s included with the Java JDK, or you can use a third-party tool such as Keystore Explorer.

Can I execute this command on Windows?

Yes, you can execute this command on Windows as long as you have OpenSSL and the JDK installed on your system. However, the syntax for the commands may differ slightly depending on which version of Windows you’re using.