I’m not advertising for them, but I am trying out two free web hosting services: freehostia dot com and x10hosting dot com.
Does anyone here know: is it possible to use Let’s Encrypt certificates with free hosting services such as the two I listed above?
I’ve asked at the latter site’s community support forum because I see no information about it there. As for the former, it appears that they will sell you a certificate, but what I’m really trying to learn is not whether I can use any certificate with a site generated by a free hosting service, but rather, can I use the free Let’s Encrypt certificates with such a site.
Thanks for any thoughts or insights.
This is slightly simplified, but there are generally three types of setups you could encounter with regards to shared hosting and Let’s Encrypt. All of these could apply both to free and paid web hosting services.
- Full integration. Your provider has an option to get a certificate from Let’s Encrypt and to automatically configure SSL/TLS to work for your site. There’s a community-maintained list of such providers in the certbot wiki. I haven’t checked if any of those are free.
- Manual configuration. Your provider doesn’t integrate Let’s Encrypt directly, but allows you to provide your own certificate and key files, usually through their control panel or sometimes via some kind of API. You’d be able to get a certificate from Let’s Encrypt by running a client on your own device (or a VM, etc.), for example certbot with the manual plugin. While this might work, it’s usually hard or impossible to automate, which isn’t the best kind of news given that certificates are only valid for 3 months - so you’d have to do this four times every year.
- No SSL or SSL only through your web host. From your description it sounds like that’s what your current host is doing. They either don’t support SSL or only support SSL if you buy the certificate through them or upgrade to a bigger plan. Historically, SSL has been one of the things through which cheap web hosting providers made their money. If you’re stuck with a host like that, there’s not much you can do other than pay or switch to a different provider. There’s also a good chance that some of those providers will change their business model somewhere down the line, once they notice an influx of people leaving their service for ones that do support Let’s Encrypt or other free CAs.
Thank you pfg! I think the former hosting service may offer the manual configuration option. I’m fiddling with certbot now.
Maybe they don’t care for what you ask and just provide the LE tls setup out of the box.
That is something aside, but I see plenty of small businesses using LE now (my ISP does it !). So why not free web hosting ?
GoogieHost provides free Lets Encrypt SSL certificate with their free web hosting accounts but there is limit of 1 account per user and you will not able to install free SSL with their free sub-domains
@pfg thanks for posting that information. I couldn’t find the wiki nor the list in the first link though, maybe it was removed.
The list was moved to this post a while back, when (certbot) client development was separated from Let’s Encrypt/ISRG. I’ll update the link above for anyone else stumbling across this post, thanks for pinging me!
@pfg thanks for the info.
We didn’t think it was so special at all, but our clients told us that many free web hostings don’t offer this, so, here you go: We’re offering Let’s Encrypt integrated in our Free Hosting at https://onesite.co/
We never thought this would be so much of a deal, but apparently it’s cooler than what we thought it was haha At OneSite we provide a Platform where people have all they need to have a website for free. We provide free cPanel hosting, Let’s Encrypt Free SSL, Website Builder, Learn Code courses and much more.
Feel free to give it a look. If this looks as spam, please edit the post to make it less spammy (and sorry for the spam in that case haha)
Hope this helped someone!
Freehostia seems to have added the option to generate a let’s encrypt cert for a domain by modifying your ssl settings for the domain via right click.
I planing use it on freeweb.pk , And it is now need for latest browsers. Let’s Encrypt is great thing for all webmasters…!