TIL: HTTPS sites are not so hard any more.

Like many, I was curious to see how the Let’s Encrypt project would roll out in the real world. I remember looking at documentation for setting it up when it first came out, and quickly moved on – it seemed complicated and laborious (still, pretty great for a free SSL cert).

Now that it’s been around for a while (WordPress.com custom domains use Let’s Encrypt certs), I thought I’d check again how difficult it would be to throw it on a random domain of mine. I reactivated my DigitalOcean account, spun up a VPS, did some basic setup, and nabbed a new domain (a 6-letter domain, $8 for 5 years, wut) for fun. After waiting overnight for DNS propagation, I banged through three quick tutorials for Nginx, PHP7, and Let’s Encrypt – and had my cert up and running. Not a bad server setup for ~$5 a month and next to no effort.

(Edit, September 2, 2016: “my cert up and running” link is dead as I’ve deactivated my DigitalOcean account; turns out I only need ZEIT now.)

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Kirk Wight

I am a WordPress developer working at Automattic (the makers of WordPress.com). Based in Vancouver, BC, Canada, I am easily distracted and very curious.