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6.7 OPC UA Secure Conversation ToC Previous Next

6.7.4 Establishing a SecureChannel ToC Previous Next

Most Messages require a SecureChannel to be established. A Client does this by sending an OpenSecureChannel request to the Server. The Server shall validate the Message and the ClientCertificate and return an OpenSecureChannel response. Some of the parameters defined for the OpenSecureChannel service are specified in the security header (see 6.7.2) instead of the body of the Message. Table 47 lists the parameters that appear in the body of the Message.

Note that OPC 10000-4 is an abstract specification which defines interfaces that can work with any protocol. This specification provides a concrete implementation for specific protocols. This document is the normative reference for all protocols and takes precedence if there are differences with OPC 10000-4.

Table 47 – OPC UA Secure Conversation OpenSecureChannel Service

Name Data Type
   RequestHeader RequestHeader
   ClientProtocolVersion UInt32
   RequestType SecurityTokenRequestType
   SecurityMode MessageSecurityMode
   ClientNonce ByteString
   RequestedLifetime UInt32
   ResponseHeader ResponseHeader
   ServerProtocolVersion UInt32
   SecurityToken ChannelSecurityToken
      SecureChannelId UInt32
      TokenId UInt32
      CreatedAt UtcTime
      RevisedLifetime UInt32
   ServerNonce ByteString

The ClientProtocolVersion and ServerProtocolVersion parameters are not defined in OPC 10000-4 and are added to the Message to allow backward compatibility if OPC UA-SecureConversation needs to be updated in the future. Receivers always accept numbers greater than the latest version that they support. The receiver with the higher version number is expected to ensure backward compatibility.

If OPC UA-SecureConversation is used with the OPC UA-TCP protocol (see 7.1) then the version numbers specified in the OpenSecureChannel Messages shall be the same as the version numbers specified in the OPC UA-TCP protocol Hello/Acknowledge Messages. The receiver shall close the channel and report a Bad_ProtocolVersionUnsupported error if there is a mismatch.

The Server shall return an error response as described in OPC 10000-4 if there are any errors with the parameters specified by the Client.

The RevisedLifetime tells the Client when it shall renew the SecurityToken by sending another OpenSecureChannel request. The Client shall continue to accept the old SecurityToken until it receives the OpenSecureChannel response. The Server has to accept requests secured with the old SecurityToken until that SecurityToken expires or until it receives a Message from the Client secured with the new SecurityToken. The Server shall reject renew requests if the SenderCertificate is not the same as the one used to create the SecureChannel or if there is a problem decrypting or verifying the signature. The Client shall abandon the SecureChannel if the Certificate used to sign the response is not the same as the Certificate used to encrypt the request. Note that datatype is a UInt32 value representing the number of milliseconds instead of the Double (Duration) defined in OPC 10000-4. This optimization is possible because sub-millisecond timeouts are not supported.

The OpenSecureChannel Messages are signed and encrypted if the SecurityMode is not None (even if the SecurityMode is Sign).

The Nonces shall be cryptographic random numbers with a length specified by the SecureChannelNonceLength of the SecurityPolicy.

See OPC 10000-2 for more information on the requirements for random number generators. The OpenSecureChannel Messages are not signed or encrypted if the SecurityMode is None. The Nonces are ignored and should be set to null. The SecureChannelId and the TokenId are still assigned but no security is applied to Messages exchanged via the channel. The SecurityToken shall still be renewed before the RevisedLifetime expires. Receivers shall still ignore invalid or expired TokenIds.

If the communication channel breaks the Server shall maintain the SecureChannel long enough to allow the Client to reconnect. The RevisedLifetime parameter also tells the Client how long the Server will wait. If the Client cannot reconnect within that period it shall assume the SecureChannel has been closed.

The AuthenticationToken in the RequestHeader shall be set to null.

If an error occurs after the Server has verified Message security it shall return a ServiceFault instead of a OpenSecureChannel response. The ServiceFault Message is described in OPC 10000-4.

If the SecurityMode is not None then the Server shall verify that a SenderCertificate and a ReceiverCertificateThumbprint were specified in the SecurityHeader.

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