User Tools

Site Tools


Renewal of VPN certificate

If you have issues connecting to the VPN and you see the error:

Certificate has key usage  00a0, expects 00a0

in /var/log/openvpn-client.log, then your certificate has probably expired.

To check its expiry date, as root type the command:
$ openssl x509 -in /etc/openvpn/keys/user.crt -noout -enddate
notAfter=Nov 12 13:42:43 2018 GMT

The displayed date after noAfter is the expiry date.

There are four methods to renew the certificate.

1. Neutrinet app

The Neutrinet app takes care of checking every night whether certificates must be renewed.


You can either install the app through the admin panel, or with:
yunohost app install neutrinet


To upgrade this app:
yunohost tools update --apps
yunohost tools upgrade --apps neutrinet

2. From a cube

If the Neutrinet app is already installed, you can force the certificates verification:
cd /opt/neutrinet/renew_cert
./ -v

3. From the renew_cert script

Clone the following git repository, either on your cube or your own computer:
git clone

Move to the folder that just has been created:
cd renew_cert

Create a virtual python3 environment. This means that the installed python3 packages won't have any impact on the rest of the system:
python3 -m venv ve

Enable this environment:
source ve/bin/activate

Install the script dependencies:

pip install -r requirements.txt

Finally, run the script with this command:

python <Neutrinet VPN's username>

You will be asked for your password to login to the Neutrinet VPN.

Normaly, a subfolder named certs_YYYY-MM-DD_HH:MM:SS (replace the uppercase letters with the script execution date and time ) should be created, which contains all the configuration files needed for the OpenVPN client.

The files that we need are client.crt and client.key, i.e. the public and private key of the certificate.

These files must replace the files in /etc/openvpn (this may change depending of the OS). On the cube, these files are in /etc/openvpn/keys

Remark: Before replacing one with the other, it is advisable to make a backup of the old certificate, just in case. For instance, with the following commands (still from the renew_cert directory):
sudo mv /etc/openvpn/keys/user.crt{,.backup}
sudo mv /etc/openvpn/keys/user.key{,.backup}
sudo mv client.crt /etc/openvpn/keys/user.crt
sudo mv client.key /etc/openvpn/keys/user.key

All you need to do is to restart the OpenVPN service to check if it's still working.

Remark: Ideally, make sure to be connected on the same local network as your cube, i.e. through its local address (192.168.1.x in most cases).
sudo systemctl restart openvpn`

To check that you are connected to the VPN, you can run the following command:
ip addr

Normaly, the tun0 interface should appear in the list.

4. From

This method sometimes requires some patience because can produce some failures.

Login with ssh to your internet cube, then go to the folder where the VPN key is located (it should be the file /etc/openvpn/keys/user.key):
cd /etc/openvpn/keys

Create a certificate signing request (CSR) for this key:
openssl req -new -newkey rsa:4096 -nodes -keyout user.key

You will be asked for several questions, such as the country code (BE), the region (Bruxelles, …), the organisation, etc… to which the certificate is related. Most important is the Cname, that is the name which will be used by Neutrinet to know to whom belongs the certificate.

Remark: It is recommanded to provide your email address for the Cname field.

This command create a file named client.csr, which contains the certificate signing request. You can display its content with:
cat client.csr

Copy this content, then go to


Click on Users

Wait for the page to load, and when you see your name click on it.

Click on View associated clients

Click on your certificate (if you have more than one, use the one with an IPv4 - 80.67.181.x)

Choose the Renew certificate option

The current certificate should appear on the screen. Click on Rekey, then paste the content of the CSR (the file you copied earlier).

Click on the Rekey button to confirm.

Once this operation done, you should see the following banner:

You can click on View client details, then on Download config package.

This will download a zip file containing the certificate files. In the directory /etc/openvpn/keys of your cube, copy the file client.crt to /etc/openvpn/keys/user.crt.

That's it!

en/vpn/renew-cert.txt · Last modified: 2022/07/22 13:15 by