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Encryption Keys


The Domino server task communicates with the REST API through the KeepManagementURL. It has a default value of http://localhost:8889. You can overwrite this ssetting in the notes.ini by editing (or creating if missing) the entry KeepManagementURL (case sensitive). Having configured an TLS certificate you need to make sure the entry starts with https:// and uses the host name your TLS certificate has been issued for. localhost, or ::1 will not work. Configuring TLS doesn't change the port, so when you host, your TLS certificate is issued for, is and your old entry was missing or is the default of http://localhost:8880, then your new value needs to be: For more information, see Domino REST API task and ports.

There are three areas in Domino REST API where encryption keys are needed:

  • HTTPS certificates for Domino REST API ports
  • JSON Web Token (JWT) signing
  • ID vault signing requests

This page documents the creation of those keys. Check the security page for configuration details.

HTTPs certificates for Domino REST API ports

When your server is facing the internet or you can't distribute custom (root) CAs (certificate authorities) to your users, you should consider using a certificate from an official source such as LetsEncrypt. (This documentation does not describe how to do that.) You can run Domino REST API without encryption; however, in a production environment this is not recommended, unless you run on a container service like Kubernetes or OpenShift, where the container handles encryption.

If you create your own CA, you must:

  • Create the private key and root certificate.
  • Create an intermediate key and certificate.
  • Create certificates for your servers.
  • Convert them if necessary, for example for import in Java KeyStore.
  • Make the public key of the root and intermediate certificates available.
  • Import these certificates in all browsers and runtimes used for testing.

Follow the detailed instructions and the followup.

Again: It's generally better to use LetsEncrypt.

Encryption key for JWT signing

Domino REST API uses JWT for authentication. When you get started with Domino REST API, you probably log in with a Domino username and password. Domino REST API, out of the box, uses an ephemeral symmetric encryption key to sign requests. Since you can't see the key or share it, this configuration is reasonably secure. When you restart Domino REST API, a new key is used.

To use a key that can be deployed to an external identity provider (IdP) or used to send requests to the Domino ID vault service, you must generate a public/private key pair and configure the security settings. Never share the private key.

Use the OpenSSL tool to generate a key. The key is an RSA key:

ssh-keygen -t rsa -b 4096 -m PEM -f private.key
openssl rsa -in private.key -pubout -outform PEM -out public.pem

If you prefer Elliptic-curve keys (smaller, more modern), use this:

openssl ecparam -genkey -name secp521r1 -noout -out privatekey.pem
openssl ec -in privatekey.pem -pubout -out publickey.pem

The parameter -name secp521r1 defines the ES512 encryption algorithm. Don't change the parameter.

Encryption key to sign ID vault requests

The required key is an ES512 elliptic-curve as described above. Keep the private key safe and configure it in security. The public key must be imported into the ID vault. Check the documentation there.

openssl ecparam -genkey -name secp521r1 -noout -out privatekey.pem
openssl ec -in privatekey.pem -pubout -out publickey.pem

Using the Management Console for encryption operations

The management UI offers convenience functions for encryption and certificate related activities.

Domino REST API Management Console

Hashing a salted password

The shutdown key, as well as the metrics credential password are stored salted and hashed in the Domino REST API configuration ini files. To change one of them, the salt button can be used to compute a replacement value. Enter the password, it isn't hidden here, click on Salt and the salted and hashed version will be shown in the UI, where you can copy & paste it for use in a configuration json file.

Generate keys and certificates for SAML and JWT

Domino REST API used X509 certificates and a public/private key pair for SAML interaction with the Domino R12 IDVault. The management console offers a convenient way to generate those and the needed configuration entries.

Note: You need access to the Domino server's file system to collect the keys/cert.

Enter a certificate name, don't use spaces or special characters, stick to: 0-9,a-z,A-z,-,_. Then enter the Shutdown key (masked input) and click on `Create IdP Certificate. 4 things will happen:

  • Creation of an X509 certificate
  • Creation of a public/private key pair
  • Creation of a configuration json file
  • Update of the IdP Cert button on the management page

The 4 files get created in your keepconfig.d directory. Distribute them to all Domino REST API servers to achieve single login and decryption capabilities. For example, when you specified AcmeKeepTest as your Certificate Name, you get this configuration file:

  "JwtUsePubPrivKey": true,
  "JwtUsePemFile": true,
  "JwtIssuer": "CN=ServerName/O=OrgName/F=AcmeKeepTest",
  "JwtPrivateKeyFile": "keepconfig.d/AcmeKeepTest.private.key.pem",
  "JwtPublicKeyFile": "keepconfig.d/AcmeKeepTest.public.key.pem",
  "JwtCertFile": "keepconfig.d/AcmeKeepTest.cert.pem",
  "JwtAlgorithm": "RSA"

Example of how to create and set up Domino REST API on multiple Domino servers to use the same JWT keys

  • Log in to the Management console (Port 8889).
  • Type a name you want to call this certificate into the Certificate Name. There should be no spaces or special characters.

    • for example: MultiDomain
  • Click Create IdP Certificate.

  • Domino REST API generates 4 files in this server's [notesdata]/keepconfig.d directory:

    • MultiDomain.cert.pem
    • MultiDomain.json
    • MultiDomain.private.key.pem
    • MultiDomain.public.key.pem
  • Copy these 4 files to your other Domino servers into the [notesdata]/keepconfig.d directory.

  • Restart Domino REST API on all servers with this new configuration and they will now share the same JWT keys.