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Code Signing

macOS and Windows code signing is supported. If the configuration values are provided correctly in your package.json, then signing should be automatically executed.

Windows is dual code-signed (SHA1 & SHA256 hashing algorithms).

On a macOS development machine, a valid and appropriate identity from your keychain will be automatically used.

Env Name Description
CSC_LINK The HTTPS link (or base64-encoded data, or file:// link, or local path) to certificate (*.p12 or *.pfx file). Shorthand ~/ is supported (home directory).
CSC_KEY_PASSWORD The password to decrypt the certificate given in CSC_LINK.
CSC_NAME macOS-only Name of certificate (to retrieve from login.keychain). Useful on a development machine (not on CI) if you have several identities (otherwise don’t specify it).
CSC_IDENTITY_AUTO_DISCOVERY true or false. Defaults to true — on a macOS development machine valid and appropriate identity from your keychain will be automatically used.
CSC_KEYCHAIN The keychain name. Used if CSC_LINK is not specified. Defaults to system default keychain.


If you are wrapping app to installer (pkg), you need to have INSTALLER ID identity in your keychain or provide according CSC_INSTALLER_LINK and CSC_INSTALLER_KEY_PASSWORD.


If you are building Windows on macOS and need to set a different certificate and password (than the ones set in CSC_* env vars) you can use WIN_CSC_LINK and WIN_CSC_KEY_PASSWORD.


To sign an app on Windows, there are two types of certificates:

  • EV Code Signing Certificate
  • Code Signing Certificate

Both certificates work with auto-update. The regular (and often cheaper) Code Signing Certificate shows a warning during installation that goes away once enough users installed your application and you’ve built up trust. The EV Certificate has more trust and thus works immediately without any warnings. However, it is not possible to export the EV Certificate as it is bound to a physical USB dongle. Thus, you can’t export the certificate for signing code on a CI, such as AppVeyor.

If you are using an EV Certificate, you need to provide win.certificateSubjectName in your electron-builder configuration.

If you use Windows 7, please ensure that PowerShell is updated to version 3.0.

If you are on Linux or Mac and you want sign a Windows app using EV Code Signing Certificate, please use the guide for Unix systems.

Travis, AppVeyor and other CI Servers

To sign app on build server you need to set CSC_LINK, CSC_KEY_PASSWORD:

  1. Export certificate. Consider to not use special characters (for bash[1]) in the password because “values are not escaped when your builds are executed”.
  2. Encode file to base64 (macOS: base64 -i yourFile.p12 -o envValue.txt, Linux: base64 yourFile.p12 > envValue.txt).

Or upload *.p12 file (e.g. on Google Drive, use direct link generator to get correct download link).

  1. Set CSC_LINK and CSC_KEY_PASSWORD environment variables. See Travis or AppVeyor documentation. Recommended to set it in the CI Project Settings, not in the .travis.yml/appveyor.yml. If you use link to file (not base64 encoded data), make sure to escape special characters (for bash[1]) accordingly.

In case of AppVeyor, don’t forget to click on lock icon to “Toggle variable encryption”.

Keep in mind that Windows is not able to handle enviroment variable values longer than 8192 characters, thus if the base64 representation of your certificate exceeds that limit, try re-exporting the certificate without including all the certificates in the certification path (they are not necessary, but the Certificate Manager export wizard ticks the option by default), otherwise the encoded value will be truncated.

[1] printf "%q\n" "<url>"

Where to Buy Code Signing Certificate

See Get a code signing certificate for Windows (platform: “Microsoft Authenticode”). Please note — Gatekeeper only recognises Apple digital certificates.

How to Export Certificate on macOS

  1. Open Keychain.
  2. Select login keychain, and My Certificates category.
  3. Select all required certificates (hint: use cmd-click to select several):
  4. Developer ID Application: to sign app for macOS.
  5. 3rd Party Mac Developer Installer: and either Apple Distribution or 3rd Party Mac Developer Application: to sign app for MAS (Mac App Store).
  6. Developer ID Application: and Developer ID Installer to sign app and installer for distribution outside of the Mac App Store.
  7. Apple Development: or Mac Developer: to sign development builds for testing Mac App Store submissions (mas-dev target). You also need a provisioning profile in the working directory that matches this certificate and the device being used for testing.

Please note – you can select as many certificates as needed. No restrictions on electron-builder side. All selected certificates will be imported into temporary keychain on CI server. 4. Open context menu and Export.

How to Disable Code Signing During the Build Process on macOS

To disable Code Signing when building for macOS leave all the above vars unset except for CSC_IDENTITY_AUTO_DISCOVERY which needs to be set to false. This can be done by running export CSC_IDENTITY_AUTO_DISCOVERY=false.

Another way — set mac.identity to null. You can pass aditional configuration using CLI as well: -c.mac.identity=null.

Alternative methods of codesigning

Codesigning via Electron Builder’s configuration (via package.json) is not the only way to sign an application. Some people find it easier to codesign using a GUI tool. A couple of examples include: - SSL manager - DigiCert utility for Windows Of course any comprehensive discussion of such tools is beyond the scope of this documentation.