How to Install DoD Root Certificates on Windows Mobile Devices

Installing the DoD Root Certificates


Mobile Device Center/ActiveSync (depending on your Desktop OS) is installed on the “host” system (e.g., desktop/laptop computer).

NOTE – The certificates can also be moved to the device by placing them on a compatible micro/mini-SD card.  If this is the chosen method, skip to Obtaining and Installing the DoD Root Certificates.  Once that is complete, copy both certificates to the storage card, insert the storage card into the mobile device, and then skip to Installing the Root Certificates on the Mobile Device.

A Standard partnership is not required; a Guest partnership is sufficient.

Connecting mechanism (e.g., USB cable or Cradle) is attached to the “host” system.

The DoD Root Certificates have been downloaded to the “host” system desktop (see Obtaining and Installing the DoD Root Certificates below).

Microsoft ActiveSync/Windows Mobile Device Center Download

For Windows XP and earlier Operating Systems

Download ActiveSync 4.5 from

Follow the instructions on the website for downloading and installing.

For Windows Vista

Download Windows Mobile Device Center 6.1 from

Follow the instructions on the website for downloading and installing.

Obtaining and Installing the DoD Root Certificates

Go to this website.

Follow the directions there to install BOTH DoD Root certificates onto your desktop/laptop (make sure that you install them into “Trusted Root Certification Authorities”).

Once the DoD Root certificates are installed, click Start, Run, and type “certmgr.msc” then click OK.  This will launch the local machine’s Certificate Manager.


Select Trusted Root Certificate Authorities and then select Certificates.  Select the DoD CLASS 3 Root CA.


Right-click, select All Tasks, and select Export.  Click Next.


Leave the default (DER encoded binary X.509 (.CER) and click Next.


Select the Desktop as the destination for the file, give it a name, and click Save.


Verify the choices and click Finish.


You should see the status box below.  Click OK.  You MUST repeat this process for the DoD Root CA 2.  You should end up with 2 .CER files on your desktop.


Copying the Root Certificates to the Mobile Device

Start ActiveSync or Mobile Device Center on the “host” system.

Power on the mobile device and place it in the cradle (or other connecting mechanism).

Open “My Computer” from the “host” system desktop.

In “My Computer”, traverse to “Mobile Device” and double-click on the object.

Double-click on the folder named “My Documents”.

Copy the DoD Root Certificate files from the “host” system Desktop to the “My Documents” folder on the mobile device.

Installing the Root Certificates on the Mobile Device

On the device, choose “Start”

Choose “Programs”

Choose “File Explorer”

Click on the drop-down below the “File Explorer” title-bar

Select “My Device”

Select “My Documents”  or “Storage Card” (depending on which method you used to copy the certificates to the device).

Select each certificate individually by tapping on it.

This will initiate an install of the certificate.  You must do this for BOTH of the DoD Root Certificates.  When this is complete, remove the mobile device from the cradle or USB connection (if that method was used to copy the certificates) and perform a “Soft” reset on the mobile device per the manufacturer’s instructions.


About Tim Smeltzer
I am a husband, father, and technologist. While I am very much interested in almost all technology, my current area of specialty is secure mobile messaging. You will find me blogging from time to time on mobile technology - what I think is cool, what I think is not cool, and how to do things. Please be nice if you leave me comments. I am really trying to help!

3 Responses to How to Install DoD Root Certificates on Windows Mobile Devices

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