The Let’s encrypt (LE) SSL certificate is a free distributed certificate for websites to create secure (encrypted) server-client communication. LE certificate can be installed on multiple domains. The only caveat to using LE is that it expires every 90 days, and hence need renewal every 3 months. But if you are proficient it can be automated using shell script. Or you’d have to be doing these steps every 90 days.
There are many methods for installing LE certificate. The steps highlighted here are ways to install it on a godaddy cpanel shared hosting. Though it has been tested on a shared hosting on godaddy using cpanel, it should work for any shared hosting service that uses cpanel. All that is needed is a web browser, and so should work on any operating system (Linux, mac, or windows).
BEFORE YOU BEGIN ensure that you’re the owner/admin (or have access to – username and password) of the hosting account(s) where the certificate is to be installed. Without this it would be impossible to install LE certificate.
SECTION 1: ON SSLFORFREE.COM.
STEP 1: Go to sslforfree.com (its an example of web-based). The website automate the creation of the LE certificate without typing terminal commands.
STEP 2: in t he input box enter the domain for your website (something like: yourdomain.com). For multiple domains (sub-domains) just separate each entry with a comma. SSLFORFREE automatically adds a “www.yourdomain.com” version to it. If you don’t want this there is an edit button to make it so.
STEP 3: after choosing your domain(s), click on the “Create Free SSL certificate” button.
STEP 4: select the “Automatic FTP Verification”.
STEP 5: Under the Automatically Verify Domain heading enter your server information (username aand password) to verify.
-Type: FTP (should be automatically filled)
– Host: yourdomain.com (should be automatically filled)
– Port: 21 (should be automatically filled)
– Username: (provided by you)
– Password: (provided by you)
– Directory(?): Leave blank for automatic detection.
Click “Download Free SSL Certificate”.
STEP 6: After a successful verification. Download the certificate (.zip) file to your computer.
STEP 7: extract the zip file. It should contain 3 other smaller files (ca_bundle.crt. Certifcate.crt and private.key). These are needed for the next section.
SECTION 2: CPANEL ON GODADDY.
STEP 1: log in to your Godaddy cpanel shared hosting account. Got to the SECURITY section and click SSL/TLS.
STEP 2: Under Certificates (CRT), click GENERATE, VIEW, UPLOAD OR DELETE SSL CERTIFICATES.”
STEP 3: Under “Upload a New Certificate”, upload the SSL certificate (certificate.crt) file you downloaded in earlier section 1 (you can also choose to copy and paste the content of the certificate.crt file into the text box).
STEP 4: Add a description and click “Upload Certificate”.
STEP 5: Click Go Back, and then click “return to SSL Manager” that is at the bottom of the page.
STEP 6: Under “Install and Manage SSL for your site (HTTPS)” click “Manage SSL sites.”
STEP 7: Under “Install an SSL Website,” select your first domain (yourdomain.com). Click “Autofill by Domain” and the certificate should populate in the first box. (All 3 boxes may be automatically populated.)
STEP 8: If the “Private Key (KEY)” field is not filled in: go back to the downloaded folder, open the file private.key in any text editor of your choice. Copy the content of the file and past into the Private Key (KEY) text box.
STEP 9: If the “Certificate Authority Bundle” is not filled in: go back to the downloaded folder, open the file ca_bundle.crt in any text editor of your choice. Copy the content of the file and past into the “Certificate Authority Bundle: (CABUNDLE)” text box.
STEP 10: Click “Install Certificate.”
If it’s successful, you should get a response message like this:
SSL Host Successfully Installed You have successfully configured SSL. The SSL website is now active and accessible via HTTPS on this domain: yourdomain.com …
STEP 11: Click “OK” to close the success message.
STEP 12: If you created this certificate for more than one domain, then under “Install an SSL Website”, select your next domain that the certificate is for. And repeat steps 7 – 11 again. And do this for any other domains that you added to the certificate.
However, if this certificate is only for one domain, then skip down to step 13.
STEP 13: Confirm that the certificate is working with any ssl checker.