First of all, thanks to Let’s Encrypt (a not for profit organization) for such a great initiative, which made it possible to own websites with free SSL certificates. The aim of this organization to create a safe and secure web environment all over the world. The best thing about Let’s Encrypt is that you can use their SSL certificate for a number of websites you want to.
You must have a question in your mind that how Let’s Encrypt manages to provide free SSL to everyone.
It is donations and people’s support that encourage Let’s Encrypt to bear server and other costs and keep running this great initiative without any hassle.
There is a tutorial present on Let’s Encrypt website itself but it is not easy for everyone to understand and apply from there. So, I decided to write this tutorial; very simple, clear and easy to understand, even to a non-techie person. You will find this method easiest one, to migrate your website from HTTP to HTTPS.
» If you are new to SSL and want to know, how it works and its advantages, follow the below link.
Now, to install free SSL, all you have to do is to follow the below steps carefully, within 10 -15 minutes, you will have a website with a trusted green HTTPS bar.
I have explained each step in such a way that so that you will be able to take your free SSL in a first try. Let’s dive in!
Step 1: Visit SSL for free.com
Here you have to enter your website URL . For Example: Blogbix.com and click green button “Create Free SSL Certificate”.
This is the easiest verification method, that’s why I will proceed with this option.
Step 3: Click on ” Manually Verify Domain”.
This is done to ensure that you are the owner of the website on which you want to install SSL certificate.
Step 4: Download Both Verification Files one by one.
You will have to upload both file on your hosting using cPanel, check further steps to know how to upload.
Step 5: Select “I Have My Own CSR” .
While installing SSL, CSR ( Certificate Signing Request) is the most important requirement. Generating CSR is very easy using cPanel and will take maximum 5-10 minutes. Here is the tutorial How to Generate CSR for SSL Certificate?
Note: When you will generate CSR, both CSR and Private key is generated. Copy CSR and fill in the CSR space and copy encoded Private key and Save it as a word file. You will need Private key in the last step.
** Use Only encoded version.
Step 6: Create a .well-known folder.
Go to cPanel>File Manager>Public html (web root)>Create New Folder>Name it as .well-known
After creating the folder, refresh the page and open the .well-known folder just created. Create another folder inside this and name as acme-challenge
Step 7: Upload Both downloaded files in this folder.
* Use upload option present on upper side.
Step 8: Verify Uploaded Files.
Just Refresh the page and you will see both files like in screenshot below. Verified? Now close this page.
Step 9: Open both links on SSLforfree.com window.
See Screenshot below.
Both links will open in new windows, close them. Now, Click on “Download SSL Certificate”
Step 10. Copy Certificate (CRT) and CABUNDLE .
SSL certificate is created, you need to paste CRT and CABUNDLE one by one Cpanel now. Go to next step to paste.
Step 11. Go to cPanel > Security > SSL/TLS > Install & Manage SSL
Paste CRT, CABUNDLE and Private key here.
* Private key, that you saved in word.
Step 12: Click on ” Install Certificate“
Done. This was the last step. You have installed SSL on your website.
You can see the confirmation message below.
Renew the certificate every 3 months using the same process. Better you sign up sslforfree.com, you will automatically receive an alert one week before the expiration of SSL certificate.
Liked the effort? You can support Lets Encrypt by donating some dollars (whatever you can afford). Visit LetsEncrypt.com and join hands to make the internet safe for everyone.