4.6 Using and Managing Smart Cards
PacketiX VPN Client supports Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) using
smart cards. This section describes how to use PacketiX VPN Client
together with smart cards. For an overview of smart card authentication,
please refer to 「1.5.4 Use with Smart Cards」 and #1.5.5#.
4.6.1 Smart Card Device Driver
Required Device Driver
To use the PKI function along with a smart card or hardware security
token compatible with a smart card (hereafter collectively referred to
as "smart card"), the following two device drivers must be installed on
the client computer.
- Device driver of the smart card reader or other hardware device
- Device driver with PKCS#11 interface that supports the smart
card in use
In addition, after installing VPN Client and then installing the
smart card reader and smart card device driver, you must restart the VPN
Client service or the computer.
Furthermore, if any settings need to be made in order to use the smart
card with the smart card reader or smart card device driver, you must
make these settings in advance. For information about the settings for
using a smart card reader or smart card, please refer to the hardware
manual for that device.
Supported Smart Card Types
Some PKCS#11-supported smart cards can be used with PacketiX VPN
Client 2.0. For information about the types of smart cards supported by
SoftEther Corporation, please refer to 「12.2.6 List of Supported Smart Cards and Hardware Security Devices」. SoftEther Corporation
does not guarantee that VPN Client can be used with all types of smart
4.6.1 Selecting a Smart Card
To select the type of smart card to use, click [Select Which Smart
Card to Use] on the [Smart Card] menu of VPN Client Manager. The [Select
Which Smart Card to Use] window is displayed.
Select the desired type of the smart card listed here and click [OK]
to enable the use of that smart card. Please note that the smart cards
listed here may not necessarily work with PacketiX VPN Client 2.0. For
information about the types of smart cards supported by SoftEther
Corporation, please refer to 「12.2.6 List of Supported Smart Cards and Hardware Security Devices」.
Figure 4-6-1 Select Smart Card Window
4.6.3 Listing and Obtaining Smart Card Objects
Smart Card Manager
PacketiX VPN Client has a smart card manager function that allows you
to list and obtain objects on supported smart cards and write objects to
a smart card. To start Smart Card Manager, click [Smart Card Manager] on
the [Smart Card] menu.
When Smart Card Manager is started, a window for entering the PIN
code to access the smart card is displayed. When the PIN code is
correctly entered, a list of the objects on the smart card is created.
Figure 4-6-2 Smart Card Access Window
You can use Smart Card Manager to list, obtain, and write the following
types of data on the smart card.
- X.509 type certificate object
- RSA-type private key object
- Arbitrary type data (binary data)
Figure 4-6-3 Smart Card Manager Window
Writing Objects to a Smart Card
To write a new object to a smart card that supports object writing,
click [Import to Card]. The [Select Object Type] window is displayed.
Select [Certificate], [Private Key], or [Data], click [OK], and then
specify the file you want to write.
Figure 4-6-4 Window for Importing an Object to a Smart Card
You must specify the name of the object you want to create on the smart
card. You can specify any alphanumeric characters for the object name,
but some characters may be restricted depending on the smart card.
Figure 4-6-5 Window for Entering the Name of the Object to
Reading an Object from a Smart Card
You can read a certificate object or binary data in an arbitrary format
from a smart card. You cannot read a private key object. To read an
object, select the object, click [Export from Card], name the file, and
then save it.
Creating a Certificate and RSA Private Key and Writing them to a
You can create a certificate and RSA private key and immediately
write them to a smart card. Start by clicking [Write New Certificate and
Private Key to Card]. Select a root certificate or a certificate signed
using another certificate for the type of certificate to be created. In
addition, specify the subject names of the certificate.
Figure 4-6-6 Window for Creating a Certificate and Private
Starting Smart Card Manager on VPN Server Manager
A smart card manager similar to VPN Client Manager is provided in VPN
Server Manager, which is a VPN Server management tool. To manage smart
cards with VPN Server Manager, click [Smart Card Manager] on the startup
4.6.4 Deleting Smart Card Objects
If a smart card allows for objects to be deleted, you can delete objects
on that smart card. Select the object you want to delete and click
[Delete from Card]. Please note that once an object is deleted, it
cannot be restored.
4.6.5 Changing a PIN Code
Smart cards are protected by PIN codes. To change the PIN code of a
smart card, click [Change PIN Code] and then enter the current and new
PIN codes. Please note that some smart cards may not allow the PIN code
to be changed. In this case, you can change the PIN code by using the
utility provided with that smart card.
Figure 4-6-7 Window for Changing a Smart Card PIN Code
4.6.6 Using Smart Card Authentication to Connect to VPN Server
To connect to VPN Server with [Smart card authentication] selected as
the type of user authentication in the connection setting, insert the
smart card and then enter the PIN code on the displayed PIN code entry
Figure 4-6-8 Window for Entering the Smart Card PIN Code
The following are some limitations and precautions when using the
PacketiX VPN smart card function.
- Not all PKCS#11 smart cards are supported. For a list of
supported smart cards, please refer to 「12.2.6 List of Supported Smart Cards and Hardware Security Devices」.
- When PacketiX VPN calls the PKCS#11 driver or other external
program, the user must use that external program in accordance with
the licensing agreement set forth by the provider of the external
program at the call destination.
- You can use the smart card manager function of PacketiX VPN to
write a certificate or private key to a smart card, but we recommend
using the utility provided with the smart card or
commercially-available PKI software.