Php – file_get_contents(): SSL operation failed with code 1, Failed to enable crypto


I’ve been trying to access this particular REST service from a PHP page I’ve created on our server. I narrowed the problem down to these two lines. So my PHP page looks like this:

$response = file_get_contents("*&outSR=102100&searchExtent=&f=json");

echo $response; ?>

The page dies on line 2 with the following errors:

  • Warning: file_get_contents(): SSL operation failed with code 1.
    OpenSSL Error messages: error:14090086:SSL
    routines:SSL3_GET_SERVER_CERTIFICATE:certificate verify failed in
    …php on line 2

    • Warning: file_get_contents(): Failed to enable crypto in …php on
      line 2
    • Warning:
      failed to open stream: operation failed in …php on line 2

We’re using a Gentoo server. We recently upgraded to PHP version 5.6. It was after the upgrade when this problem appeared.

I found when I replace the REST service with an address like; my page works just fine.

In an earlier attempt I set “verify_peer”=>false, and passed that in as an argument to file_get_contents, as described here: file_get_contents ignoring verify_peer=>false? But like the writer noted; it made no difference.

I’ve asked one of our server administrators if these lines in our php.ini file exist:

  • extension=php_openssl.dll
  • allow_url_fopen = On

He told me that since we’re on Gentoo, openssl is compiled when we build; and it’s not set in the php.ini file.

I also confirmed that allow_url_fopen is working. Due to the specialized nature of this problem; I’m not finding a lot of information for help. Have any of you come across something like this? Thanks.

Best Answer

This was an enormously helpful link to find:

An official document describing the changes made to open ssl in PHP 5.6 From here I learned of one more parameter I should have set to false: "verify_peer_name"=>false

Note: This has very significant security implications. Disabling verification potentially permits a MITM attacker to use an invalid certificate to eavesdrop on the requests. While it may be useful to do this in local development, other approaches should be used in production.

So my working code looks like this:


$response = file_get_contents("*&outSR=102100&searchExtent=&f=json", false, stream_context_create($arrContextOptions));

echo $response; ?>
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