If you have a domain that doesn’t have SSL certification. You can set up SSL certification for free.

In short, what we will be doing is

  • Using zerossl site we will generate SSL cert files.
  • Using cPanel Dashboard we will activate SSL.
  • Finally, we will add redirect logic to move from HTTP to HTTPS.

Note:  I have tried this on GoDaddy web hosting using cPanel.

Step 1:
  • Goto this site: https://zerossl.com/
  • Click on Online Tools button  => FREE SSL Certificate Wizard => Start Button.
  • Something like this

Step 2:
  • In Detail Tab entry your Domain in Box saying “Domains (ONLY if you have no CSR)
  • eg:  mysite.com, www.mysite.com
  • Also, tick Accept ZeroSSL TOS and Accept Let’s Encrypt SA (pdf) given at the bottom.
  • Refer below image.
  • Click Next

Step 3:
  • Your Domain CRT is generated in the right Text Box. Just click Download Button to keep a copy of it.
  • Click Next
Step 4:
  • Your Account key will be Generated on Left box
  • Again Download it
  • Click next
Step 5:
  •  Now you will see the Verification Tab. It contains 2 files related to your domain.
  • Download both files.

  • In order to verify that you are the owner of the site for which you are generating SSL key. You need to place both files in “webroot/.well-known/acme-challenge/” 
  • In my case public_html/.well-known/acme-challenge/
Step 6:
  • Now we need to access the domain folder and upload above files using cPanel.
  • Go to your Domain cPanel Dashboard.
  • Click File Manager
  • Note that in Dialog “Show Hidden Files (dotfiles).” is checked else you will not see hidden files.
  • Click Go

Step 7:
  • Move inside public_html
  • Create a folder with name “.well-known
  • Move-in .well-known
  • Create another folder with the name “acme-challenge
  • Move-in acme-challenge
  • Now upload the files which you have downloaded from Verification Tab.
Step 8:
    • After uploading both files
    • Goto zerossl tab and click the file link. It will open another tab with the file content which you just uploaded. Refer below image.
    • If you can see the text. You have uploaded files correctly.
    • Hit Next in zerossl tab.
    • You will see “Your Certificate is ready
    • Scroll Down you will have your CRT and PRIVATE KEY. Download it for a Backup.

Step 9:
  • Now since we have got our SSL cert files. The next step is to configure SSL.
  • Goto Cpanel Dashboard
  • Scroll Down to Security => Click SSL/TLS. Refer below image.

Step 10:
  • In this window, you will see various options to configure SSL. Click the last option “Manage SSL sites.
  • In next screen select the Domain for which you are adding SSL
  • In Certificate: (CRT)
  • Copy text from Wizard first text box.
  • Paste it in the SSL CRT textbox.
  • It might say invalid as there are 2 keys into it.
  • Something like this

  • Cut the last Certificate text and paste it in Certificate Authority Bundle: (CABUNDLE) textbox.
  • Now copy the Private Key from zerossl tab and paste it in Private Key (KEY) textbox.
  • Hit Install Certificate
  • If everything went well you will see success Msg.
Step 11:
  • Verify that SSL is installed.
  • Try https://mysite.com in a new tab and it should work.
  • Now try http://mysite.com also in the new tab.
  • It works but it’s not secure or https
  • So we need to configure a redirect from HTTP to HTTPS
Step 12:
  • Goto cPanel File Manager.
  • Move to public_html folder.
  • Inside public_html look for .htaccess if it exist, edit it
  • Else create a new file with “.htaccess”
  • Inside .htaccess add in last these lines
RewriteEngine On
RewriteCond %{HTTPS} off
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ https://%{HTTP_HOST}%{REQUEST_URI} [L,R=301]
  • Save file.
  • Now try http://mysite.com it should redirect to https://mysite.com

Bingo. You have just installed SSL Cert for Free…

Note: In case, installation doesn’t work for you or you didn’t understand steps you can refer a sample installation video

1 Comment

RG Sayson · March 22, 2019 at 9:40 pm

Thank you! It worked!!

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