How text-ish are PEM files?

Douglas Morris dougbmorris at
Tue Jan 28 02:17:21 UTC 2020

I expect from RFC 8555 that an ACME server issues a full chain certificate as a reply body in the PEM format. The media type is 'application/pem-certificate-chain'. I can only guess from RFC 1421, sec. 4.3.1 that the byte encoding of the certificate necessarily uses <CR><LF> line breaks. I get US-ASCII from encguess <file>.pem.  Paging PEM files with less does NOT show ^M at the end of each or any line.

Are PEM files, e.g. the private key pair files and certificate files needed by Web servers, necessarily in US-ASCII?
Are PEM files typically/conventionally stored in the line break encoding of the native operating system?
Should PEM files always or normally be transmitted with the <CR><LF> line break encoding?
Douglas Morris
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <>

More information about the openssl-users mailing list