Enable TLS in SMP3

SSL is out, TLS is the new kid in town (although already pretty old) and to keep security high on your SMP3 server, a question remains: how to enable TLS on SMP3? Easy: it is already configured!

By default, SMP3 comes with TLS enabled. The trick is to configure it how you want it to be. For once, there are the ciphers (not part of this blog) and the protocol. The protocol defines if a browser can use TLS v1, v1.1 or v1.2. The configuration is done on the server side, in the default-server.xml file located at:

/<SMP3 installation directory>/Server/config_master/org.eclipse.gemini.web.tomcat/default-server.xml

As SMP3 is using Tomcat as its web server, the usual Tomcat configuration parameters apply. To have a HTTPS connection on port 8081, the XML looks like this:

<Connector SSLEnabled=”true” ciphers=”TLS_RSA_WITH_AES_128_CBC_SHA” clientAuth=”false” keyAlias=”smp3″ maxThreads=”200″ port=”8081″ protocol=”com.sap.mobile.platform.coyote.http11.SapHttp11Protocol” scheme=”https” secure=”true” smpConnectorName=”oneWaySSL” sslEnabledProtocols=”TLSv1″ sslProtocol=”TLS”/>


  • Port: defines the port Tomcat will listen on. Here it is 8081
  • sslEnabledProtocols: “The comma separated list of SSL protocols to support for HTTPS connections. If specified, only the protocols that are listed and supported by the SSL implementation will be enabled.” [1]
  • sslProtocol: “The SSL protocol(s) to use (a single value may enable multiple protocols – see the JVM documentation for details). If not specified, the default is TLS” [1]

Connecting to the port results in a TLSv1 connection:

The parameters that define which protocol can be used are sslEnabledProtocols and sslProtocol. Now, which one does what? I found [2] and [3] explaining this:

  1. setProtocol=”TLS” will enable SSLv3 and TLSv1
  2. setProtocol=”TLSv1.2″ will enable SSLv3, TLSv1, TLSv1.1 and TLS v1.2
  3. setProtocol=”TLSv1.1″ will enable SSLv3, TLSv1, and TLSv1.1
  4. setProtocol=”TLSv1″ will enable SSLv3 and TLSv1

In the above example, sslProtocol = TLS, therefore TLSv1 and SSLv3 is available. To limit the connection to TLSv1, sslEnabledProtocol must be set to TLSv1. To have a connection that allows for TLSv1, TLSv1.1 and TLSv1.2 (and let the browser decide which one to use), set sslEnabledProtocols to TLSv1,TLSv1.1,TLSv1.2.


<Connector SSLEnabled=”true” ciphers=”TLS_ECDHE_RSA_WITH_AES_128_CBC_SHA256,TLS_ECDHE_RSA_WITH_AES_128_CBC_SHA,TLS_ECDHE_RSA_WITH_AES_256_CBC_SHA384,TLS_ECDHE_RSA_WITH_AES_256_CBC_SHA,TLS_RSA_WITH_AES_128_CBC_SHA256,TLS_RSA_WITH_AES_128_CBC_SHA,TLS_RSA_WITH_AES_256_CBC_SHA256,TLS_RSA_WITH_AES_256_CBC_SHA” clientAuth=”false” keyAlias=”tobias” maxThreads=”200″ port=”8081″ protocol=”com.sap.mobile.platform.coyote.http11.SapHttp11Protocol” scheme=”https” secure=”true” smpConnectorName=”oneWaySSL” sslEnabledProtocols=”TLSv1,TLSv1.1,TLSv1.2″ sslProtocol=”TLS”/>

If I now connect on port 8081, my browser should use the highest protocol available.

[1] https://tomcat.apache.org/tomcat-7.0-doc/config/http.html

[2] http://mail-archives.apache.org/mod_mbox/tomcat-users/201303.mbox/%3C13A085B2E018374C813676301AED0EE412D87457C3@BLR0EXC00.us.sonicwall.com%3E

[3] http://wiki.apache.org/tomcat/Security/POODLE

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