Today, out of the blue, our Mockups for Desktop build started failing with the cryptic error above.
A Google search didn't turn up much, while a Bing search returned this seemingly abandoned Flex bug (#FB-16236).
Signs pointed to an issue with our code signing certificate. I contacted the TC TrustCenter support (who issued the cert) via phone, which was totally useless. The guy didn't even ask what happened, he just opened a ticket and 6 hours later I haven't heard back.
Until we get this fixed we cannot ship updates to Mockups, so you can imagine how I felt all afternoon.
I posted on the Adobe Air pre-release forums but heard nothing there either.
I did eventually find a solution though: I went here: http://www.chosensecurity.com/adobe-air-certificates and since the links on the page were broken I reluctantly clicked on "Chat Now", at least to tell them about their broken websites.
To my surprise, the person that answered my chat was extremely knowledgeable and was able to tell me exactly what the deal was.
So I'm sharing it now for those of you in the future who hit this rare issue. Do not panic, your pain is temporary.
So here's the deal: when you sign your Air application with a certificate, it turns out that adt goes out to the interwebs and checks a Certificate Revocation List, i.e. a server that keeps a list of expired or blocked certificates.
Makes sense, except that today ChosenSecurity/TC TrustCenter has had an outage of some sorts that took down their CRL server. They're working on it, and it should all go back to normal tomorrow.
In the meantime, a workaround is to DISCONNECT FROM THE INTERNET and sign your application then. In this case adt falls back to a cached version of the CRL, et voila'! I tried it and it works.
This reminds me of something my "Distributed Systems" professor taught us back in college: "a rigorous, well accepted definition of a distributed system is one in which someone, somewhere, does something...which prevents you from getting your work done".
Yup, check! :)
People from the future: If this article helped you, put a w00t in the comments! :)