How do I convert a Bouncy Castle Certificate to a .NET Certificate?

2013-03-18 19:57:54 +0000

In the last installment, we created a Bouncy Castle certificate. How do we now create a .NET X509Certificate2 object?

The only reliable way I’ve found to do this is to create a PKCS12 file. On Windows, these are more commonly known as .PFX files. This is based on a solution I found here.

var store = new Pkcs12Store();

Bouncy Castle uses an “alias” to associate the public key and private key within the container. Windows refers to this as the certificate “friendly name”. For this example, we’ll use the subject name.

string friendlyName = certificate.SubjectDN.ToString();

We then need to add the certificate to the store.

var certificateEntry = new X509CertificateEntry(certificate);
store.SetCertificateEntry(friendlyName, certificateEntry);

Then we add the private key. It needs to have the same alias, and needs to be associated with the certificate entry that we just added.

store.SetKeyEntry(friendlyName, new AsymmetricKeyEntry(subjectKeyPair.Private), new[] { certificateEntry });

Now we’ve got a Pkcs12Store, we can copy it to a stream. For this part, we need to specify a password:

const string password = "password";

var stream = new MemoryStream();
store.Save(stream, password.ToCharArray(), random);

With that stream, we have two options. We can write a .PFX file:

File.WriteAllBytes("foo.pfx", stream.ToArray());

Note that to import this file, you’ll need to specify the password.

Alternatively, at this point, you can convert it to a .NET X509Certificate2 object.

var convertedCertificate =
    new X509Certificate2(
        stream.ToArray(), password,
        X509KeyStorageFlags.PersistKeySet | X509KeyStorageFlags.Exportable);

I’ll write something about what the flags mean later…

And you can import that directly into the Windows Certificate store, should you want to.