RADIUS/TLS: Obtaining and managing certificates

RADIUS over TLS is a new way of interconnecting federations (and later, if desired, eduroam IdPs and eduroam SPs). It uses TLS encryption instead of IP address and shared secret pairs to authenticate and authorise eduroam servers. When replacing such explicit configuration-based authorisation with a dynamic, automatic provisioning model, it is important to clearly define the rules for issuance of an eduroam server certificate, because the possession of the certificate will enable the holder to participate in eduroam.

In order to make use of this new feature, your FLR server must have acquired an eduroam server certificate. Depending on which federation or world region you are from, the procedures for getting a certificate will differ. The following subsection is a globally valid description of the eduroam Trust Model; the subsection after that defines rules per world region, as far as they are known at the time of writing.

The eduroam server certificate trust model: eduPKI PMA and the eduroam Trust Profile

During the design of the X.509 trust model for eduroam, certain requirements had to be considered.

As a result of these requirements, the GEANT project's eduPKI task created a framework for the eduroam trust model:

This way, it can be assured that only authorised eduroam operators get eduroam certificates and can establish connections to other eduroam servers.

Managing accredited CAs in eduroam servers

The number of accredited CAs and the list of certificates can change at any time. It is important that all eduroam servers consult an up-to-date list of accredited CAs. The list of currently accredited CAs is maintained in a TERENA repository of the TACAR service. A browsable list can be found here: https://www.tacar.org/cert/list/

eduroam operations will make available scripts for easy regular download and update of the accredited CAs. On UNIX-like systems, this script should be executed in a cron job on a regular basis (we suggest daily).

Please refrain from manually downloading CAs as a one-time action. Otherwise, your CA list will eventually become outdated and this will create service disruption for some eduroam users!

eduroam Certificates in the world regions


There is currently one accredited Certification Authority: the eduPKI CA, located at https://www.edupki.org/edupki-ca/ . eduPKI CA acts as a catch-all for all areas within the GEANT service area which do not have their own CA for the eduroam service. Such further CAs are welcome to apply for eduPKI PMA accreditation.

eduroam operators should request their eduPKI CA eduroam certificate by following the instructions on the eduPKI CA eduroam RA pages at: http://www.eduroam.org/index.php?p=europe&s=edupki


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