The Impact of SNI (Server Name Identification) on DevTest
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The Impact of SNI (Server Name Identification) on DevTest


Article ID: 41348


Updated On:


CA Application Test CA Continuous Application Insight (PathFinder)



Using a valid certificate chain , but still cannot connect to a Virtual Service using SSL.



DevTest version 10.0 or later, using a SSL enabled virtual service with valid certificates. 


Since Java SE 7, SSL connections are protected with Server Name Identification (SNI) in addition to the previous SSL protection mechanisms.

Normally, SSL connections are verified by comparing the host name presented in the connection URL with the Common Name (CN) or Alternative Name(s) that were provisioned in the certificate when it was created. 

Thus, a connection to https://myhost.mydomain.tld/index.html would only succeed if the certificate issued to myhost.mydomain.tld or had an alternative name of myhost.mydomain.tld within it.

SNI adds a further level to the host verification - it uses the server name presented within the SSL handshake and verifies that this is also one of the valid names for the certificate. 

Both the name in the URL and the server name (if different) must be present in the certificate.

The Virtual Service Environment will configure the server name based on the host name of the machine upon which it runs - this name may be seen by executing the command hostname on the command line.

For example, if a certificate was issued to server myhost.mydomain.tld with no alternative names provided, and the host name is given as myhost, then a connection to https://myhost.mydomain.tld/index.html will fail the SNI check, and therefore be denied.

If, however, the host name is configured to be myhost.mydomain.tld then the connection will succeed, and, similarly, if myhost is added to the alternative names (or the certificate issued to myhost with myhost.mydomain.tld in the alternative names) then the connection will be permitted to proceed.


Always ensure that all names by which a host is known are included in the certificate for that machine - this includes long (FQDN) and short form names. 

for reference:

SNI  -

SSL Certificates -

Alternative names -