X.509 is an standard for a public key infrastructure used for authentication and access control. X.509 specifies standard formats for certificates, revocation lists, attribute certificates, and path validation.

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Limiting the root certificate chain

I'm playing around with the idea of running a mini-CA with my (hobby) website, likely only used internally with a few select developers for internal emails, client authentication, staging/development ...
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How are possible uses for X.509 (SSL) certificates denoted?

X.509 certificates can be used for servers, clients, email, code signing and more applications. http://twitpic.com/6gdxaq indicates that a certificate can have different of these 'capabilities' on it ...