I own a public and open-source Windows Forms/C# application in a Github repo that I want to start code signing with my certificate through Azure Pipelines CI. I have set up my pipeline and it is building fine, the next step is to integrate automatic code signing, which until this point I have been doing manually. I have taken the following steps:

After adding a task, the YML generating is:

- task: codesigning@2
    secureFileId: '$(certName)'
    signCertPassword: '$(certPass)'
    files: '**/*.exe'
    timeServer: 'http://timestamp.digicert.com'
    hashingAlgorithm: 'SHA256'

So, saving this, it is obviously going to update my azure-pipelines.yml in my repository. Is it possible to perform code signing in Azure Pipelines without exposing any information in the repository? Is this considered best practice for code-signing in Azure Pipelines?

  • Hey - incidentally, it would be worth posting how many users download your application as this materially affects the risk assessment; i.e. if you get 100,000 downloads a month then your application is a might greater target of attacks. If You get much less than that it's probably not enough of a target for an attacker to try and compromise your pipeline. I really like this question because you are demonstrating two good practices merged together, those being code signing and CI/CD - well done. Jul 31, 2019 at 19:50
  • @RichardSlater My application has typically less than 100 downloads per month, it is not that popular of a repository, but I wish to put the security of my project and userbase first and foremost. Jul 31, 2019 at 22:10

1 Answer 1


From what I can see you have done everything correctly, you have stored both the certificate material (i.e. the PFX) and the password for the PFX in a secure location that presumably no one else can access. Assuming you don't give anyone else permissions on your Azure tenant and you don't blindly accept pull requests that change azure-pipelines.yml then you are in a good place.

If you are feeling paranoid, then you could create a second pipeline using a private repository that is triggered when the previous pipeline completes successfully. However, IMHO, I would carefully consider the risk you are exposing yourself to against the complexity and fragility of trying to tie two pipelines together.

  • Thank you, I have determined I will add the code signing process to azure-pipelines.yml for now. I couldn't see how this would pose any risk given I alone manage the project but my paranoia probably comes from my day job in secure software development. Jul 31, 2019 at 22:20

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