You can deploy the VMware Cloud Director appliance with signed wildcard certificates. You can use these certificates to secure an unlimited number of servers that are subdomains of the domain name listed in the certificate.

Important: For certificates documentation for VMware Cloud Director 10.5.1 and later, see Certificate Management in the VMware Cloud Director Appliance 10.5.1 and Later. Starting with VMware Cloud Director 10.5.1, the certificates command of the cell management tool is deprecated. The certificates command appears to work correctly, but after a cell restart, the changes are not in effect because the cell no longer reads the certificate files from the files on-disk. In version 10.5.1 and later, VMware Cloud Director reads the certificates from the Certificates Library.

By default, when deploying VMware Cloud Director appliances, VMware Cloud Director generates self-signed certificates and uses them to configure the VMware Cloud Director cell for the HTTPS communication.

Starting with VMware Cloud Director 10.4, both the console proxy traffic and HTTPS communications go over the default 443 port. You do not need a separate certificate for the console proxy.

Note: VMware Cloud Director 10.4.1 and later do not support the legacy implementation of the console proxy feature.

When you successfully deploy a primary appliance, the appliance configuration logic copies the file from the primary appliance to the common NFS shared transfer service storage at /opt/vmware/vcloud-director/data/transfer. Other appliances deployed for this VMware Cloud Director server group use this file to configure themselves automatically. The file includes a path to the SSL certificate and private key, which includes the auto-generated self-signed certificates user.certificate.path and private key user.key.path. By default, these paths are to PEM files which are local to each appliance.

After you deploy the primary appliance, you can reconfigure it to use signed certificates. For more information on creating the signed certificates, see Create and Import CA-Signed SSL Certificates for Your VMware Cloud Director 10.5.0 Appliance.

If the signed certificates you use on the primary VMware Cloud Director appliance are wildcard signed certificates, these certificates can apply to all other appliances in the VMware Cloud Director server group, that is, standby cells and VMware Cloud Director application cells. You can use the deployment of the appliance with signed wildcard certificates for HTTPS communication to configure the additional cells with the signed wildcard SSL certificates.


To verify that this is the relevant procedure for your environment needs, familiarize yourself with SSL Certificate Creation and Management of Your VMware Cloud Director Appliance.


  1. Copy the user.http.pem and user.http.key files from the primary appliance to the transfer share at /opt/vmware/vcloud-director/data/transfer/.
  2. Change the owner and the group permissions on the certificate files to vcloud.
    chown vcloud.vcloud /opt/vmware/vcloud-director/data/transfer/user.http.pem
    chown vcloud.vcloud /opt/vmware/vcloud-director/data/transfer/user.http.key
  3. Verify that the owner of the certificate files has read and write permissions.
    chmod 0750 /opt/vmware/vcloud-director/data/transfer/user.http.pem
    chmod 0750 /opt/vmware/vcloud-director/data/transfer/user.http.key
  4. On the primary appliance, run the command to import the new signed certificates into the VMware Cloud Director instance.

    These commands also update the file in the transfer share, modifying the user.certificate.path and user.key.path variables to point to the certificate files in the transfer share.

    /opt/vmware/vcloud-director/bin/cell-management-tool certificates -j --cert /opt/vmware/vcloud-director/data/transfer/user.http.pem --key /opt/vmware/vcloud-director/data/transfer/user.http.key --key-password root-password
  5. For the new signed certificates to take effect, restart the vmware-vcd service on the primary appliance.
    1. Run the command to stop the service.
      /opt/vmware/vcloud-director/bin/cell-management-tool cell -i $(service vmware-vcd pid cell) -s
    2. Run the command to start the service.
      systemctl start vmware-vcd
  6. Deploy the standby cell and application cell appliances, using the initial root password that matches the key password.


All newly deployed appliances that use the same NFS shared transfer service storage are configured with the same signed wildcard SSL certificates used by the primary appliance.