February 24, 2010

Removing SSL Certificate Expiry Error In Ubuntu

SSL certificate error for any site shows up when your system time is not in sync with the network time. If you view the details, you'll find that the date shown is in the past. To sync your system time, you can use ntpdate.

1. If it is not already installed, install it first.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo apt-get install ntpdate

2. If it is already installed, try syncing the time.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo /etc/network/if-up.d/ntpdate


varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo ntpdate ntp.ubuntu.com

3. Try editing the ntpdate file.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo gedit /etc/default/ntpdate

The file looks like:

# servers to check. (Separate multiple servers with spaces.)
NTPSERVERS=”0.debian.pool.ntp.org 1.debian.pool.ntp.org 2.debian.pool.ntp.org 3.debian.pool.ntp.org”
# additional options for ntpdate

If you have your own NTP server, list it under NTPSERVERS.

Save and exit the editor.

4. Now, use cronjob to run ntpdate every hour.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ crontab -e

In the file, type the following.

@hourly /etc/network/if-up.d/ntpdate

Save and exit. See the options at the bottom of the terminal for help.

5. Try updating again.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo /etc/network/if-up.d/ntpdate

Try opening any site. You will at least get the option of adding an exception.


1. http://www.askdavetaylor.com/invalid_or_expired_security_certificate.html

2. http://www.ubuntugeek.com/keeping-your-system-clock-current-automatically-via-network-time-protocol-ntp.html

3. http://www.cyberciti.biz/faq/set-date-time-network-time-protocol-ntp/

4. http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/ubuntu/sync-your-system-clock-with-internet-time-servers-in-ubuntu/ (for Ubuntu 8.10)


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  2. An old work colleague a while ago had this problem when removing SSL Certificates from Ubuntu. It would have been nice to have found this earlier for him. Nonetheless a worthwhile post!

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