AutoSSL and Let’s Encrypt for your Server

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SSL certificate is a significant component of data encryption that makes Internet transaction secure. It creates a trusted environment in online business by ensuring the safety of potential customers and company information, as well of financial transactions.

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The green lock shows a secure website.

However the SSL installation and set up is a costly and often a dreary process. It requires a website’s owner to manually generate a CSR, purchase a certificate, validate, sign and install it once all these processes are done. Due to these tedious procedures, many site administrators choose not to get SSL certificates and this will ultimately result in insecure websites followed by web-based attacks.

The ISRG (Internet Security Research Group) then came up with a solution for all these problems- The Let’s Encrypt!!

Let’s Encrypt is an open certificate authority, that is free and meant to run for the public’s benefit. It is a very helpful service from which new certificates can be purchased automatically. It has evaded the general processing of SSL certificates like creation, validation, signing, installation and renewal.

cPanel, Inc. has also implemented a similar feature for easy SSL installation which is called the “AutoSSL”. With this, Domain Validated SSLs are automatically provided for WHM/cPanel domains and is available from cPanel & WHM version 58.0.17 onwards.

Due to the highest voted request on their Feature Request, cPanel has now incorporated Let’s Encrypt’s support with AutoSSL. The certificates provided by Let’s Encrypt fits perfectly with AutoSSL. For the users having cPanel version 58, the installation of Let’s Encrypt is restricted to only command line basis. The following command can be used for installing and uninstalling Let’s Encrypt in the server:

 

/scripts/install_lets_encrypt_autossl_provider

/scripts/uninstall_lets_encrypt_autossl_provider

 

AutoSSL will automatically renew the SSL certificates that cPanel, Inc. provides when they expire within 15 days and for the ones that Let’s Encrypt provides, they will be renewed when they expire within 29 days. There are several rate limits associated with the Let’s Encrypt service. For a summary of these limits, navigate to the AutoSSL documentation at http://go.cpanel.net/autossl

While AutoSSL makes it a breeze to secure your websites, it is only available on cPanel version 58 and above. Since the latest cPanel & WHM version supported by CentOS-5 and 32-bit operating systems is 56, this feature won’t be available for CentOS-5 systems. So if you wish to have AutoSSL, it’s time to migrate to a new operating system!

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