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Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Where are my .NET certificates and their thumbprints? Ask Powershell

I ran into a confusing situation where I was trying to pass a certificate with a PowerShell command but found it incredibly confusing to find my certificates.

I was trying to use a certificate on my local machine that I created at an earlier time but where the hell are they? If you open Microsoft Management Console (type mmc into the start bar) and then add the certificates snap in. Choose either Current User or Local computer or whichever is most relevant for you.

Let's dispel some weirdness. My = Personal. For some hilarious reason there is no 'My' folder and it is actually called 'Personal'. This is the place you should be looking for for your own certificates you have created.

So if you have found the certificates you were after you will probably need the thumbprint... but it is encrypted. Awesome.

If you open up PowerShell and type the command

get-childitem -path cert:\CurrentUser\My
this will list all of the certificates in the Current User\Personal folder for you by thumbprint. Very handy. For the ones in Local machine simply replace CurrentUser with LocalMachine.

Hopefully this will save you some time when dealing with this confusing certificate nightmare.

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