I want to permanently delete SSL certificate from Windows Server 2008. What I did is open up the mmc window and selected the certificate from the machine store and click delete. This removed the certificate from the certificate store. I just want to know if this action deleted the certificate completely from the machine and want to make sure that its private key is also deleted. The action I did is correct or not?


Yes, the key will be deleted with the certificate. You would need to export them first if you want to be able to restore them at some point.

  • When I import certificate, a file is created under C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Crypto\RSA\MachineKeys. But when I delete certificate it does not delete file from that location. – Kumar Sep 17 '12 at 13:30
  • I mean is it safe to leave the files in C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Crypto\RSA\MachineKeys once I delete certificate from mmc. – Kumar Sep 17 '12 at 15:02
  • That file is a container for keys. The actual key will be removed from the container when the key is deleted. – Ansgar Wiechers Sep 17 '12 at 16:28

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