On a CentOS 6 desktop, when we connect with openssl to a webserver using a NORMAL user:

CONNECTED(0000003) SSL23_WRITE:ssl handshake failure:s23_lib.c:177

It doesn't connect, but if we do it with the root user, it connects.

Q: What is the difference when connecting with openssl with different users?

  • 2
    Different client and / or CA certificates. Apr 4, 2017 at 15:08
  • Firewall rules?
    – derobert
    Apr 4, 2017 at 16:04

1 Answer 1


There is no tangible difference.

The problem you are having is almost surely related to sshd options. (it could also be some security plugin like Centrify, but that is not likely on a server).

Revise the options in /etc/sshd/config, specifically:

  • 1
    it is ssl, not SSH, but thanks!
    – Marina Ala
    Apr 4, 2017 at 14:53
  • SSL is used by many other protocols to secure connections. Said connections (ssh, https, ftp) have configuration options that define how SSL is used. I have assumed that your connection issue is with SSH because you mention connecting with system users. And, well, openssl on its own cannot be used to connect to anything.
    – Bruno9779
    Apr 4, 2017 at 15:04
  • 2
    @Bruno9779, -1 SSH doesn't have anything to do with SSL/TLS. And the openssl command line tool has a huge bunch of builtin utils, including s_client that very much can connect to SSL/TLS speaking servers.
    – ilkkachu
    Apr 4, 2017 at 15:39

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