' Openssl.cnf ' and ' .rand ' file

Girish Venkatachalam girish1729 at gmail.com
Sat Nov 10 18:23:41 PST 2007

On 11:22:10 Nov 10, White Hat wrote:
> openssl 0.9.7e-p1 25 Oct 2004
> I have not been able to find an answer to this question on Google, so I figured I had better ask it here.
> In the '/etc/ssl/openssl.cnf' file, there is an entry for:
>     RANDFILE    = $dir/private/.rand    # private random number file
> Well, that file does not exist. I cannot find it anywhere on my system and I have not been able to figure out how to create it.
> Also, where could I locate some information on the 'openssl.cnf' file. There does not appear to be a 'man' page for it. I would like some more information on what all of the settings mean and possibly how to set them for my particular needs.

Why do you want it?

You can use the openssl rand command for doing what you may be wanting
to do.

$ openssl rand 10000

if you want binary output of length 10000 bytes or you can use the
-base64 switch for ASCII output.

(You don't need the RANDFILE which is probably a seed or something)

Most parts of OpenSSL are not documented properly and the source code is
immensely hard to follow.

I have worked with the guts of OpenSSL long ago and in spite of working
with it for a long time, I have always found it hard to follow what
happens where. :)

The code is one of the most intricate uses of the wonderful C language.

Enjoy the fun! :)



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