Issue command:

openssl genrsa -out rsaprivatekey-nake.pem  -des3 1024

If not providing a passphrase(just press enter when requested), it keeps saying:

Enter pass phrase for rsaprivatekey-nake.pem:
3073726088:error:28069065:lib(40):UI_set_result:result too small:ui_lib.c:869:You must type in 4 to 8191 characters

Can anybody tell me why?

Env: openSUSE 11.4, openssl 1.0.0c

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1 Answer 1


Because you are asking it to encrypt the private key by giving the -des3 option.

If you don't want your key to be protected by a password, remove the -des3 option from the command line.

  • 7
    note that -des3 can be the implicit default option -des3 encrypt private keys with triple DES (default)... so keep calm if you have the same prompt without asking openssl explicitly... same option to disable of course -nodes (read no DES)
    – Julien
    Mar 29, 2016 at 9:39
  • 1
    my version of openssl genrsa doesn't have a -nodes option. Just leave off the -des3 or any other encryption option in that case. From [link]openssl.org/docs/man1.0.2/apps/genrsa.html: If none of these options is specified no encryption is used
    – Brad Dre
    Apr 22, 2016 at 17:17
  • 2
    in my case I need to add -nodes
    – nelaaro
    Jan 25, 2019 at 12:03

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