SSL Command Options

The following list describes options that are used for specifying the use of SSL, certificate files, and key files. They can be given on the command line or in an option file. These options are not available unless MySQL has been built with SSL support. See Section, “Using SSL Connections”.

Table 5.12. SSL Option/Variable Summary

NameCmd-LineOption fileSystem VarStatus VarVar ScopeDynamic
have_openssl  Yes GlobalNo
have_ssl  Yes GlobalNo
ssl-caYesYes  GlobalNo
- Variable: ssl_ca  Yes GlobalNo
ssl-capathYesYes  GlobalNo
- Variable: ssl_capath  Yes GlobalNo
ssl-certYesYes  GlobalNo
- Variable: ssl_cert  Yes GlobalNo
ssl-cipherYesYes  GlobalNo
- Variable: ssl_cipher  Yes GlobalNo
ssl-keyYesYes  GlobalNo
- Variable: ssl_key  Yes GlobalNo
  • --ssl

    For the server, this option specifies that the server permits SSL connections. For a client program, it permits the client to connect to the server using SSL. This option is not sufficient in itself to cause an SSL connection to be used. You must also specify the --ssl-ca option, and possibly the --ssl-cert and --ssl-key options.

    This option is more often used in its opposite form to override any other SSL options and indicate that SSL should not be used. To do this, specify the option as --skip-ssl or --ssl=0.

    Note that use of --ssl does not require an SSL connection. For example, if the server or client is compiled without SSL support, a normal unencrypted connection is used.

    The secure way to require use of an SSL connection is to create an account on the server that includes a REQUIRE SSL clause in the GRANT statement. Then use that account to connect to the server, where both the server and the client have SSL support enabled.

    The REQUIRE clause permits other SSL-related restrictions as well. The description of REQUIRE in Section, “GRANT Syntax”, provides additional detail about which SSL command options may or must be specified by clients that connect using accounts that are created using the various REQUIRE options.

  • --ssl-ca=file_name

    The path to a file that contains a list of trusted SSL CAs.

  • --ssl-capath=directory_name

    The path to a directory that contains trusted SSL CA certificates in PEM format.

  • --ssl-cert=file_name

    The name of the SSL certificate file to use for establishing a secure connection.

  • --ssl-cipher=cipher_list

    A list of permissible ciphers to use for SSL encryption. For greatest portability, cipher_list should be a list of one or more cipher names, separated by colons. Examples:


    This format is understood both by OpenSSL and yaSSL. OpenSSL supports a more flexible syntax for specifying ciphers, as described in the OpenSSL documentation at http://www.openssl.org/docs/apps/ciphers.html. However, this extended syntax will fail if used with a MySQL installation compiled against yaSSL.

    If no cipher in the list is supported, SSL connections will not work.

  • --ssl-key=file_name

    The name of the SSL key file to use for establishing a secure connection.

  • --ssl-verify-server-cert

    This option is available for client programs only, not the server. It causes the server's Common Name value in the certificate that the server sends to the client to be verified against the host name that the client uses for connecting to the server, and the connection is rejected if there is a mismatch. This feature can be used to prevent man-in-the-middle attacks. Verification is disabled by default.

If you use SSL when establishing a client connection, you can tell the client not to authenticate the server certificate by specifying neither --ssl-ca nor --ssl-capath. The server still verifies the client according to any applicable requirements established using GRANT statements for the client, and it still uses any --ssl-ca/--ssl-capath values that were passed to server at startup time.

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