I host my own website from a home server (domain hosted through go daddy) and I have been trying to find information on how to install a ssl certificate. How ever I cant find any information on how to install one for a self hosted site (all I can find is word press examples how ever I coded the website myself therefore these examples are not helpful).

Note: go daddy offers paid ssl certificates from $80nzd which is a little out of my price range (as a student and especially considering the website is made for the purpose of learning all this stuff for myself), therefore I am trying to use a free one (letsencrypt), which was suggested to me by one of my university lecturers.

Can anyone point me in the direction of helpful tutorials, give me some advice or something similar to help me with this installation process?

Also note the server runs on windows which I intend to change in the future when I move it to linux so this is an "in the mean time" solution.


The EFF has solved this for you with LetsEncrypt - https://letsencrypt.org/

What I do to use LE on my self hosted servers (well, Linode VPS... but I have root access, etc)

1 - install the LetsEncrypt client from repositories. Depending on what distro you are running, it could be called letsencrypt or certbot or acme-client. Use the package search tools to find out exactly.

2 - stop your webserver. Make sure ports 80 and 443 are open, and your DNS is working properly.

3 - request a certificate. letsencrypt certonly -d example.com -d www.example.com

Certs are saved at /etc/letsencrypt/live/example.com/fullchain.pem and privkey.pem.

4 - Edit the apache config as appropriate to use the new certificates.

5 - Set up cron job to keep certs updated.

  • i do not understand your comments as I am trying to use lets encrypt already but I am unsure how to install this on a self hosted server Mar 29 '19 at 13:04
  • @StanleyRoyChilton - edit coming!
    – ivanivan
    Mar 29 '19 at 13:54
  • so lets encrypt is not specifically for linux based systems?? Apr 3 '19 at 12:19
  • @StanleyRoyChilton - nope, you can use it on Mac, Windows, BSD, etc. I just happen to only use Linux (desktop, laptop, servers) ...
    – ivanivan
    Apr 3 '19 at 12:29
  • do you have a recommended distribution? and I am assuming the install will be done within the website file system rather than the entire system? Apr 3 '19 at 14:17

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