Obtaining a certificate

Please fill out the fields below so we can help you better. Note: you must provide your domain name to get help. Domain names for issued certificates are all made public in Certificate Transparency logs (e.g. https://crt.sh/?q=example.com), so withholding your domain name here does not increase secrecy, but only makes it harder for us to provide help.

My domain is: OPCAAW.com

I ran this command:

It produced this output:

My web server is (include version): don’t know

The operating system my web server runs on is (include version): Unix

My hosting provider, if applicable, is: HostMySite

I can login to a root shell on my machine (yes or no, or I don’t know): I don’t know

I’m using a control panel to manage my site (no, or provide the name and version of the control panel): Wordpress

The version of my client is (e.g. output of certbot --version or certbot-auto --version if you’re using Certbot):

I am webmaster for the site of a small woodturners group in Washington state. We use Wordpress for content management and the site is hosted by HostMySite. We use a WP plug-in called Ninjaforms to create membership renewal and membership application forms so that new members and renewing members can sign up and pay dues online. Ninjaforms has an app that allows us to redirect the user to Pay Pal after they submit their membership application, and then Pay Pal collects the dues they owe. All of a sudden, the Pay Pal redirect isn’t working, and I’m being told that Pay Pal now requires us to have an SSL certificate. HostMySite will charge us $100 a year to obtain and maintain a certificate. Or I can obtain a free certificate and upload the files to them to integrate in our site.
Can you tell me the steps I need to follow to obtain a certificate so I can send them the files?

Perhaps. Depends on how much control you have over your website (or DNS server, but I’m guessing you don’t have any control over that). You’ll need to be able to put a file with a random filename and sort of random contents to the directory /.well-known/acme-challenge/. So some direct controle over your website is needed, for example, through FTP.

That’s the million dollar question. Even if you can get a certificate, it needs to be installed. If you don’t have direct control (root access) over the server on which your website runs, you’d need to have some kind of control over the webserver through for example a control panel. Such as cPanel. If that’s not the case, then HostMySite might be able to manually install the certificate for you. Seeing they’re asking $ 100 for a certificate of their own, probably making some profit along the way, chances are they won’t comply with your request.

Chances are you’d need to change hosting provider.

I have control over my site, but not my web server. The server is hosted by a hosting company, and they control all the software that’s supporting the site.
It’s a Wordpress site, so I control the look and feel and the content.
When I’ve looked through the Let’s Encrypt step by step guides, I can’t understand most of what’s being described in the instructions. I’m not sure how I would do what’s being required in order to prove I have control over our site.

Like I already said:

Is a $100 annual fee to obtain and maintain an SSL certificate a fair price for that service? Seems very high, especially given that we are a small non-profit group.

It’s 100 dollars too much if you’d ask me. There are many, MANY hosting providers providing Let’s Encrypt certificates for zero dollars.

See: Web Hosting who support Let's Encrypt

OK, I appreciate that perspective. This whole issue was prompting me to shop around for a new host. I’ll do the research to see what I can find out.

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