How to Decrypt an Encrypted SSL Key

Published 25th March 2014

A couple of times recently I’ve ran into the issue where I have receieved an encrypted SSL key from my registrar, but my hosting software won’t allow me to use an encrypted SSL key. The good reason for this is that if the key is encrypted, you’d have to enter the passphrase every time the web server is restarted, which becomes a big pain.

Thankfully there is a simple way to decrypt your encrypted SSL key using Terminal:

openssl rsa -in private-key.key -out private-key.unencrypted

This simple command will take the encrypted private-key.key and save an un-encrypted private-key.unencrypted file in the same directory. Easy.