Chapter 1: Getting Started

This document describes how to install and use the OpenSSL application on a Windows system.

Download and install the latest version of OpenSSL for Windows

First, download OpenSSL for Windows at the following website:

Run the installer program

Locate and double-click the installation .exe file to run the installer. There should be no need to change any of the default installation options.

Set the newly installed OpenSSL path as global to Windows

After running the installer program, you will need to set the path for the OpenSSL bin directory to be global.

From the Start menu, open the Control Panel.

On the Control Panel, select System, then select the Advanced tab.

Click the Environment Variables button.

In the Environment Variables dialog, locate the “System variables” window and select the Path field.

Once Path is highlighted, click the Edit button.

The “Edit System Variable” dialog is displayed. The second field will contain all of the directories that Windows uses as global.

Enter the OpenSSL binaries path into the “Variable Value” field without overwriting or removing any of the remaining information.

Append the new OpenSSL binaries path to the end of the field. Keep in mind that all entries are separated by semi-colons:

// example
C:\Program Files\QuickTime\QTSystem\;C:\OpenSSL\bin

The default path for Windows installation of OpenSSL should be:


Click OK after confirming an edit of the path, and continue clicking OK for any of the remaining open Control Panel windows.


Reboot your system before proceeding.

Installation of Visual C++ libraries

OpenSSL is dependent upon C++ libraries available from the Microsoft download site or previously installed with Microsoft Visual Studio.

Shining Light Productions (the team responsible for maintaining and distributing the OpenSSL port for Windows), recommends using the Visual C++ 2008 Redistributable. It can be downloaded at the following website:

If Microsoft Visual Studio is already installed, this step is not necessary.

Test the OpenSSL installation

This step should be taken after adding the OpenSSL binaries path to the Windows environment variables path and verifying that the Visual C++ libraries are installed.

Open a Command Prompt and enter the command openssl version.


Start, Run, cmd

C:\WINNT\system32>openssl version
OpenSSL 1.0.0d 8 Feb 2011

The version string of the correctly installed OpenSSL version will display, confirming your new installation.

Chapter 2: Troubleshooting

Command not recognized

Entering the command openssl version into the Command Prompt may result in an error dialog displaying a message stating that the OpenSSL command is not recognized:

C:\WINNT\system32> openssl version
'openssl' is not recognized as an internal or external command, operable program or batch file.

This is an indicator that the path to the OpenSSL executable has not been set in the Windows environment variables path and still needs to be set. Please see the section Set the newly installed OpenSSL path as global to Windows in Chapter 1 of this manual.

Unable To Locate DLL : The dynamic link library 
MSVCR90.dll could not be found in the specified path C:\OpenSSL\bin;.;C:\WINNT\system32;C:\WINNT\system;C:\WINNT; C:\WINNT\system32;.

This indicates that the Visual C++ libraries have not been installed properly and OpenSSL cannot execute. Please see the section Installation of Visual C++ libraries in Chapter 1 of this manual.