How to get the cert and key file in my computer?


#1

My hosting provider (Bluehost) told me to firstly contact Let’s Encrypt and get the cert and key file in my computer, and then log into my hosting account to do some configurations, and then talk back to them to install SSL for me.

How do I get the cert and key file in my computer?


#2

What was the context of your conversation with them? Maybe it would be helpful to quote their exact words here.

If you just want to get a private key and certificate file for a domain, then you can just use something like https://zerossl.com/free-ssl/#crt , but keep in mind that you’d need to do this every 60 days or so.


#3

@_az I asked them to help install Let’s Encrypt for my website. And they said:

First, you need to contact your SSL provider and get the cert and key file in your computer.

Then, log into account > SSL/TLS Manager

Private Keys (KEY), click on Generate, view, upload, or delete your private keys and upload. 

Certificates (CRT), click on Generate, view, upload, or delete SSL certificates and upload. 

Once uploaded, then Chat back to us to install SSL for you.

Is the zerossl.com you mentioned a service of Let’s Encrypt?


#4

The true meaning of what Bluehost said is “we don’t support Let’s Encrypt. You will need to get a certificate from a third party and then you can install it via your Bluehost account”.

Something to understand is that Let’s Encrypt is meant to be automated. The ideal way to use it is that Bluehost should integrate it into their hosting services, and you shouldn’t need to do anything manually. There are many web hosts that support Let’s Encrypt properly, but Bluehost is not one of them. Often web hosts do not support it due to a profit motive, for example, if they charge money for SSL certificates.

The problem with this is that Let’s Encrypt certificates only have a 90 day duration. So you would have to continually re-issue the certificate via ZeroSSL and re-install it to Bluehost, at least once per 90 days. Not very convenient, I think you’d agree.

ZeroSSL allows you to issue a Let’s Encrypt certificate manually using your web browser, which you would have to import to Bluehost by hand.


#5

@_az I see. Thanks for explaining their true meaning. They do charge for SSL, and I guess that’s why they don’t support Let’s Encrypt.

Having to renew it manually sounds a bit troublesome. I will try it for some time and see if it’s acceptable to me.


#6

Also, you upload the cert and key BUT you have to contact Bluehost to install it so, to avoid surprises ask them if you have to pay a fee to complete this process. Some hostings providers ask for a fee to install the cert, others do it free just the first time… just ask them to be sure.


#7

@sahsanu Thanks for reminding me. I will ask them.


#8

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