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Introducing AutoSSL: Free SSL Certificates For All Domains

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Introducing AutoSSL We’re excited to announce the activation of AutoSSL, a feature that will contribute to enhanced security and performance by providing free SSL certificates for all domains hosted at MaxterHost. It is a fantastic addition to our feature list.

The internet is steadily moving towards the secure HTTPS as a default protocol. A while ago, an SSL certificate was only necessary for websites that processed sensitive data. However, nowadays having an SSL certificate is an important factor for the search engine standing and a requirement for using the latest and fastest HTTP/2 protocol.

What is AutoSSL?

AutoSSL is the solution to one of the biggest pain points that exists for every cPanel & WHM user: SSL purchasing, installation and renewal. With AutoSSL, there are no more forms to fill out, no more certificates to manually copy into place and no more renewal fees. Your websites are automatically secured with a Domain Validated SSL certificate. Perhaps more exciting is the fact that your coverage will never lapse, because at expiration time a new SSL is requested and automatically installed.

Best part of it: The SSL certificates are totally free of charge and provide the same level of security as a regular commercial SSL certificate.

The SSL certificates are currently issued and signed by cPanel, Inc. (Powered by Comodo).

How do you enable AutoSSL?

AutoSSL is enabled automatically for all accounts hosted on our servers.

The SSL certificates are issued automatically for domains and subdomains that pass a Domain Control Validation (DCV) test, which proves ownership of the domain.

Existing domains that point to our server should already have an SSL certificate issued by now. When you add a new domain or account, AutoSSL will issue an SSL certificate within 24 hours.

How does the Domain Control Validation (DCV) work?

As part of the Domain Control Validation (DCV), an automatically-generated plain text file will be placed inside the document root of your domain (usually inside the “public_html” folder). The SSL Certificate Authority attempts to fetch this file to make sure that the domain is hosted on our server. After successful validation, the SSL certificate is automatically issued and installed.

To pass the DCV test, you should assure that:

  • The domain is valid and points to our nameservers
  • The text file can be accessed publicly (i.e. no password protection is in place, no htaccess rules deny access, the permissions are set correctly, etc.)
  • If there are any faulty rules in your .htaccess file, the system will be unable to initiate the validation process

How can I check if I have an SSL certificate installed?

There are various methods to verify the existence and validity of an SSL certificate. You can go to cPanel » SSL/TLS and check if there’s already an SSL certificate stored and installed. Another way to verify is to run an SSL test at Qualys SSL Labs:

I already have an SSL certificate. Will AutoSSL replace it?

AutoSSL will only replace SSL certificates that are invalid, self-signed, or are due to expire within 15 days. If you don’t want AutoSSL to replace your existing SSL certificate, please make sure that it’s installed correctly and it is renewed at least 16 days before expiration.

Can I access cPanel, WHM and Webmail using my domain now?

Yes, AutoSSL has SNI support for cPanel, WHM and Webmail to allow you to access these services through your own domain, instead of our server’s hostname. This was a feature awaited by many of our clients.

My domain has CloudFlare enabled. Why doesn’t it have an SSL certificate installed?

Domains behind CloudFlare cannot pass the DCV test, thus AutoSSL cannot issue SSL certificates for these domains. However, CloudFlare provides free SSL certificates through Universal SSL. To enable SSL/HTTPS for a domain behind CloudFlare, you should issue a CloudFlare Origin SSL in CloudFlare’s control panel and manually install it in cPanel. There’s currently no automated way to do this, unfortunately.

Need an SSL certificate with Organization Validation or Extended Validation (Green Bar)?

For websites that require a higher level of trust and authentication, we offer a wide variety of SSL certificates (Wildcard, Organization Validation, Extended Validation, etc.) at competitive prices.

Extended Validation (EV) SSL Certificates – Offers the highest trust level by enabling the green bar. The green address bar prominently displays your company name and provides highly visual assurance to customers that your site is secure – immediately giving them the confidence to complete their transaction.

Organization Validation (OV) SSL Certificates – In the case of an OV certificate, the CA performs a much more substantial validation process. Additional vetted company information is displayed to customers when clicking on the Secure Site Seal, giving enhanced visibility in who is behind the site and building enhanced trust.

Please get in touch with us if you’d like to have a consultation and free quote for a commercial SSL certificate.

If you have any questions or concerns in regards to AutoSSL, please don’t hesitate to open a ticket or email us.

Graphic credit: Lock icon by Svengraph

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