Chapter 25. Verifying system certificates using IdM Healthcheck

Learn more about identifying issues with system certificates in Identity Management (IdM) by using the Healthcheck tool.

For details, see

Healthcheck in IdM.

25.1. System certificates Healthcheck tests

The Healthcheck tool includes several tests for verifying system (DogTag) certificates.

To see all tests, run the ipa-healthcheck with the --list-sources option:

# ipa-healthcheck --list-sources

You can find all tests under the source:


This test compares the CA (Certificate Authority) certificates in its NSS database to the same values stored in CS.cfg. If they do not match, the CA fails to start.

Specifically, it checks:

  • auditSigningCert cert-pki-ca against ca.audit_signing.cert
  • ocspSigningCert cert-pki-ca against ca.ocsp_signing.cert
  • caSigningCert cert-pki-ca against ca.signing.cert
  • subsystemCert cert-pki-ca against ca.subsystem.cert
  • Server-Cert cert-pki-ca against ca.sslserver.cert

If Key Recovery Authority (KRA) is installed:

  • transportCert cert-pki-kra against ca.connector.KRA.transportCert

This test verifies connectivity. This test is equivalent to the ipa cert-show 1 command which checks:

  • The PKI proxy configuration in Apache
  • IdM being able to find a CA
  • The RA agent client certificate
  • Correctness of CA replies to requests

Note that the test checks a certificate with serial #1 because you want to verify that a cert-show can be executed and get back an expected result from CA (either the certificate or a not found).


Run these tests on all IdM servers when trying to find an issue.

25.2. Screening system certificates using Healthcheck

Follow this procedure to run a standalone manual test of Identity Management (IdM) certificates using the Healthcheck tool.

Since, the Healthcheck tool includes many tests, you can narrow the results by including only DogTag tests:


  • To run Healthcheck restricted to DogTag certificates, enter:

    # ipa-healthcheck

An example of a successful test:

  "check: DogtagCertsConfigCheck",
  "result: SUCCESS",
  "uuid: 9b366200-9ec8-4bd9-bb5e-9a280c803a9c",
  "when: 20191008135826Z",
  "duration: 0.252280",
  "kw:" {
    "key": "Server-Cert cert-pki-ca",
    "configfile":  "/var/lib/pki/pki-tomcat/conf/ca/CS.cfg"

An example of a failed test:

  "check: DogtagCertsConfigCheck",
  "result: CRITICAL",
  "uuid: 59d66200-1447-4b3b-be01-89810c803a98",
  "when: 20191008135912Z",
  "duration: 0.002022",
  "kw:" {
    "exception": "NSDB /etc/pki/pki-tomcat/alias not initialized",

Additional resources

  • See man ipa-healthcheck.