I am trying to install SSL certificate from a certificate authority into my httpd server in CentOS 5.x. When I configure it and start the server I am getting the following errors,

[error]Init: Unable to read server certificate from file /etc/pki/tls/certs/ssl_certificate.crt
[error] SSL Library Error: 218570875 error:0D07207B:asn1 encoding routines:ASN1_get_object:header too long

I am following the procedure at http://wiki.centos.org/HowTos/Https to set up the ssl

Any pointers would be greatly helpful

  • 1
    Could you please post the certificate file and the relevant config snippets? It seems that openssl doesn't like your certificate, but without more info, it's hard to say anything. – Lacek Mar 12 '12 at 8:24

The cert is probably faulty/corrupt. Can you regenerate from the authority?

For example, look at:




You can do some checks on the certificate using openssl:

openssl x509 -in /etc/pki/tls/certs/ssl_certificate.crt -text -noout

That should dump out the plain text of your certificate information. If it can't then there's something wrong with the certificate file.


I ran across the same issue. Heres my story and solution:

I've been saving the cert as UTF-8 with BOM (Byte order Mark) So you can just open that file with vim and save it without BOM:

# vim cert.pem
:set nobomb

via: https://stackoverflow.com/a/300474

  • Thank you! I could see the error using a cat file.pem and appear some strange character at the beginning of the file something like : ----- BEGIN CERTIFICATE ---- – Fernando Rosado Jun 27 '17 at 15:21
  • open up key file in text editor
  • convert from UTF --> ASCII
  • Restart apache

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