1.OU or OU.1 ?

Richard Levitte levitte at openssl.org
Sat Mar 21 02:44:52 UTC 2020

The correct answer is, it depends.  This is an unfortunate
evolutionary artefact, and is governed by very different pieces of

The config.pod example revolves around subject names and the config
for 'openssl req'.  The code that uses this is the function
auto_info(), found in apps/req.c.

The x509v3_config.pod example revolves around X.509 v3 extensions, and
the config for those is used by diverse functions in crypto/x509v3/
(1.1.1) or crypto/x509/ (masterand upcoming 3.0), and ultimately, the
key name comparison is done by name_cmp(), found in v3_utl.c.

So both manuals are correct.  Unfortunately...


On Fri, 20 Mar 2020 22:12:08 +0100,
Salz, Rich via openssl-users wrote:
> The doc/man5/config.pod file says to use
>                 1.OU = “My first OU”
>                 2.OU = “My second OU”
> But doc/man5/x509v3_config.pod says to append the numeric, as in
>                 email.1 = steve at here
>                 email.2 = steve at there
> I believe the second form is correct.  Can anyone confirm?
Richard Levitte         levitte at openssl.org
OpenSSL Project         http://www.openssl.org/~levitte/

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