This is a quick and simple guide for those who don’t know how to issue a free SSL certificate for their domain/s using Let’s Encrypt™ SSL on their cPanel account. Before we start, make sure that your cPanel already has Let’s Encrypt™ SSL installed as there are some shared hosting packages that do not have this feature. Also, make sure you have already pointed your domain’s nameservers to your cPanel account.
For this tutorial, I will be using a spare domain of mine called casualbrainfarts.com (I know, so mature of me) for the screenshots.
Check for the function
To check if you have Let’s Encrypt™ SSL installed, login to your cPanel account and search for the functionality.
If you can’t find the Let’s Encrypt™ SSL function, then it seems your hosting provider didn’t install it. Unfortunately, this tutorial can no longer help you as you need this service to continue. Contact your provider and see if they have alternatives for you when it comes to free SSL certificates.
Issue a new certificate
Click on the Let’s Encrypt™ SSL function icon and you will be redirected to the Let’s Encrypt™ SSL page. Here you will see all of your domains that have the free SSL certificate installed and the ones that don’t yet. Scroll to the section where it says Issue a new certificate. Your domain should be listed on the table.
Click on the ‘+ Issue‘ link and you will be redirected to the page where you can choose the validation method. If you don’t know what wildcards are, just select the http-01 or HTTP validation method and click the Issue button.
You will then receive a message “The SSL certificate is now installed onto the domain…” or something similar which means the free SSL has successfully been installed.
Verify SSL installation
To verify that the SSL certificate has installed successfully, go back to the Let’s Encrypt™ SSL page and check if your domain is listed on the table below the Your domains with Let’s Encrypt™ certificates heading.
For verification tests, you could run your domain through SSL Shopper’s SSL Checker Tool. Another quick way to tell if your domain has a valid SSL certificate is by adding https:// to the address bar when you open your website. You cannot use HTTPS if you don’t have a valid certificate.
In regards to the expiration date of a Let’s Encrypt™ SSL certificate, don’t worry as most hosting providers have an auto-renew service installed. In the event that it doesn’t, you should receive an email from the system that your SSL certificate is about to expire. Simply head back to the Let’s Encrypt™ SSL page and reinstall it.
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