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Get free HTTPS or SSL certificate for your website

SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer.

SSL Certificates are small data files. After installed on a web server it provides secure, encrypted communications between a website and an internet browser.

After SSL certificate installed on the server, the application protocol (HTTP) will change to HTTPs.

Browser treats HTTP connections as non-secure and https connections as secure.

https connections are not free. But luckily some organization that provides SSL Certificates for free!.

After getting the free SSL Certificates you need to know how to install into your domain.

Also, remember that SSL Certificate is valid for 90 days only, you need to renew it in every 90 days.

In this article, I will show you how to get a free SSL certificate from Zerossl and install it into the Godaddy server. Installation in other server is also same if you have cPanel.

  1. Open zerossl.com
  2. Click on the online tools button
  3. Click start button, under the “FREE SSL Certificate Wizard”.
  4. On the domain field add your domain don’t include http (Include domain.com and www.domain.com differentiate with a comma). We have highlighted the field in screenshot.
  5. Check to Accept ZeroSSL TOS and Accept Let’s Encrypt SA (pdf).
  6. Click on the next button in the top right corner beside the breadcrumb.
  7. After clicking next Zerossl will Generating CSR. Once generated you can download it for backup.
  8. Click on the next button in the top right corner beside the breadcrumb again to Generating account key.
  9. After Generated you can download the account key again for backup. Now you have CSR and Account Key.
  10. Now click on the next button in the top right corner beside the breadcrumb again, New page Verification will appear.
  11. In the verification page you will find 2 files beside your domain name, Download both file.
  12. Go to your FTP or file manager and create new folder “.well-known” and inside it again create a folder “ acme-challenge” in the root folder. So the path should look like: domain.com/.well-known/acme-challenge
  13. Upload the 2 file in this folder which you have downloaded previously from verification page.
  14. Now back to zerossl and Click on the next button in the top right corner beside the breadcrumb.
  15. You will get a page with the message “Your Certificate is ready”. Download both keys and write down the Account Id.
  16. Now log in to cPanel and find the SSl/TSL link under the Security section.
  17. On the next page click on the link Manage SSL sites link under “Install and Manage SSL for your site (HTTPS)” section.
  18. On the next page select the domain you want to install SSL Certificate from the domain dropdown.
  19. Paste the key for the next 2 fields in this page. For Certificate (CRT) is the first key and Private Key (KEY) is the second key you have downloaded from the final page in zerossl.com.
  20. After pasting the key in Certificate: (CRT) field you will get an error. So you need to delete the second comment area.
  21. Keep the last field blank. You will get green tick mark on all fields in this page, Click on Install Certificate button at the bottom of the page.
  22. SSL Certificate is installed on your server. You can test your site with adding https:// before your domain name.
  23. Now need to redirect your site from http: to https: for this go to FTP Client of file manager.
  24. Edit the .htaccess from root folder and add the following code
    RewriteEngine On
    RewriteCond %{HTTPS} off
    RewriteRule ^(.*)$ https://%{HTTP_HOST}%{REQUEST_URI} [L,R=301]

For WordPress User

  1. After installing the SSL Certificate you may not able to login WP Admin. For this, you need to update the site URL in the wp_option table in PHP my admin
  2. Check the console if you are getting SSL Mixed Content Error Message. You can install any of the plugin form WordPress plugin repository

Now use https for your website for free. Don’t forget to update the SSL certificate every 90 days.
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