Java™ Platform
Standard Ed. 6

java.security.cert
Class Certificate

java.lang.Object
  extended by java.security.cert.Certificate
All Implemented Interfaces:
Serializable
Direct Known Subclasses:
X509Certificate

public abstract class Certificate
extends Object
implements Serializable

Abstract class for managing a variety of identity certificates. An identity certificate is a binding of a principal to a public key which is vouched for by another principal. (A principal represents an entity such as an individual user, a group, or a corporation.)

This class is an abstraction for certificates that have different formats but important common uses. For example, different types of certificates, such as X.509 and PGP, share general certificate functionality (like encoding and verifying) and some types of information (like a public key).

X.509, PGP, and SDSI certificates can all be implemented by subclassing the Certificate class, even though they contain different sets of information, and they store and retrieve the information in different ways.

See Also:
X509Certificate, CertificateFactory, Serialized Form

Nested Class Summary
protected static class Certificate.CertificateRep
          Alternate Certificate class for serialization.
 
Constructor Summary
protected Certificate(String type)
          Creates a certificate of the specified type.
 
Method Summary
 boolean equals(Object other)
          Compares this certificate for equality with the specified object.
abstract  byte[] getEncoded()
          Returns the encoded form of this certificate.
abstract  PublicKey getPublicKey()
          Gets the public key from this certificate.
 String getType()
          Returns the type of this certificate.
 int hashCode()
          Returns a hashcode value for this certificate from its encoded form.
abstract  String toString()
          Returns a string representation of this certificate.
abstract  void verify(PublicKey key)
          Verifies that this certificate was signed using the private key that corresponds to the specified public key.
abstract  void verify(PublicKey key, String sigProvider)
          Verifies that this certificate was signed using the private key that corresponds to the specified public key.
protected  Object writeReplace()
          Replace the Certificate to be serialized.
 
Methods inherited from class java.lang.Object
clone, finalize, getClass, notify, notifyAll, wait, wait, wait
 

Constructor Detail

Certificate

protected Certificate(String type)
Creates a certificate of the specified type.

Parameters:
type - the standard name of the certificate type. See Appendix A in the Java Cryptography Architecture API Specification & Reference for information about standard certificate types.
Method Detail

getType

public final String getType()
Returns the type of this certificate.

Returns:
the type of this certificate.

equals

public boolean equals(Object other)
Compares this certificate for equality with the specified object. If the other object is an instanceof Certificate, then its encoded form is retrieved and compared with the encoded form of this certificate.

Overrides:
equals in class Object
Parameters:
other - the object to test for equality with this certificate.
Returns:
true iff the encoded forms of the two certificates match, false otherwise.
See Also:
Object.hashCode(), Hashtable

hashCode

public int hashCode()
Returns a hashcode value for this certificate from its encoded form.

Overrides:
hashCode in class Object
Returns:
the hashcode value.
See Also:
Object.equals(java.lang.Object), Hashtable

getEncoded

public abstract byte[] getEncoded()
                           throws CertificateEncodingException
Returns the encoded form of this certificate. It is assumed that each certificate type would have only a single form of encoding; for example, X.509 certificates would be encoded as ASN.1 DER.

Returns:
the encoded form of this certificate
Throws:
CertificateEncodingException - if an encoding error occurs.

verify

public abstract void verify(PublicKey key)
                     throws CertificateException,
                            NoSuchAlgorithmException,
                            InvalidKeyException,
                            NoSuchProviderException,
                            SignatureException
Verifies that this certificate was signed using the private key that corresponds to the specified public key.

Parameters:
key - the PublicKey used to carry out the verification.
Throws:
NoSuchAlgorithmException - on unsupported signature algorithms.
InvalidKeyException - on incorrect key.
NoSuchProviderException - if there's no default provider.
SignatureException - on signature errors.
CertificateException - on encoding errors.

verify

public abstract void verify(PublicKey key,
                            String sigProvider)
                     throws CertificateException,
                            NoSuchAlgorithmException,
                            InvalidKeyException,
                            NoSuchProviderException,
                            SignatureException
Verifies that this certificate was signed using the private key that corresponds to the specified public key. This method uses the signature verification engine supplied by the specified provider.

Parameters:
key - the PublicKey used to carry out the verification.
sigProvider - the name of the signature provider.
Throws:
NoSuchAlgorithmException - on unsupported signature algorithms.
InvalidKeyException - on incorrect key.
NoSuchProviderException - on incorrect provider.
SignatureException - on signature errors.
CertificateException - on encoding errors.

toString

public abstract String toString()
Returns a string representation of this certificate.

Overrides:
toString in class Object
Returns:
a string representation of this certificate.

getPublicKey

public abstract PublicKey getPublicKey()
Gets the public key from this certificate.

Returns:
the public key.

writeReplace

protected Object writeReplace()
                       throws ObjectStreamException
Replace the Certificate to be serialized.

Returns:
the alternate Certificate object to be serialized
Throws:
ObjectStreamException - if a new object representing this Certificate could not be created
Since:
1.3

Java™ Platform
Standard Ed. 6

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For further API reference and developer documentation, see Java SE Developer Documentation. That documentation contains more detailed, developer-targeted descriptions, with conceptual overviews, definitions of terms, workarounds, and working code examples.

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