Using TLS (SSL) with Ruby amqp gem and RabbitMQ

About this guide

This guide covers connection to RabbitMQ nodes using TLS (also known as SSL) and related issues. This guide does not explain basic TLS concepts. For that, refer to resources like Introduction to SSL or Wikipedia page on TLS.

Covered versions

This guide covers Ruby amqp gem 1.7.0 and later versions.

RabbitMQ Version Requirements

RabbitMQ has supported TLS since version 1.7.0. Minimum requirements are

  • Erlang R13B
  • Erlang SSL application 3.10

The recommended distribution is R14B (SSL 4.0.1) or later. This should be considered the minimum configuration for Java and Erlang clients due to an incorrect RC4 implementation in earlier versions of Erlang.

Learn more at TLS page.


RabbitMQ needs to be configured to use TLS. Just like Web servers, TLS connections are usually accepted on a separate port (5671). TLS page describes how to configure RabbitMQ to use TLS, how to generate certificates for development and so on.

Connecting to RabbitMQ using TLS

To instruct Ruby amqp gem to use TLS for connection, pass :ssl option that specifies certificate chain file path as well as private key file path:

AMQP.start(:port     => 5671,
           :ssl => {
             :cert_chain_file  => certificate_chain_file_path,
             :private_key_file => client_private_key_file_path
           }) do |connection|
  puts "Connected, authenticated. TLS seems to work."

  connection.disconnect { puts "Now closing the connection…"; EventMachine.stop }

Note that TLS connection may take a bit of time to establish (up to several seconds in some cases). To verify that broker connection actually uses TLS, refer to RabbitMQ log file:

=INFO REPORT==== 28-Jun-2011::08:41:24 ===
accepted TCP connection on from

=INFO REPORT==== 28-Jun-2011::08:41:24 ===
starting TCP connection <0.9904.0> from

=INFO REPORT==== 28-Jun-2011::08:41:24 ===
upgraded TCP connection <0.9904.0> to SSL

Example code

TLS example (as well as sample certificates you can use to get started with) can be found in the amqp gem git repository