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I can remember the days when an SSL certificate would cost you hundreds of dollars per year. Well, there are still some SSL certificates in that kind of price range, but you can also find very good prices on SSL as well. I found many SSL certificates available for five dollars per year. And, guess what… Even less. Yes indeed, even less than five dollars per year.
Let me give you a rundown on who does my web hosting, other services I use, and where I got my SSL certificate.
I do all of my web hosting with Digital Ocean.
In the past, my favorite go-to host was ServInt, but honestly, they are expensive. Their service, however, is great, and they are always around to help you quickly. But, as I said, you do pay for that.
A few years back, my hosting needs became a little bit less high-end than they used to be, and I switched all of my hosting over to HostGator. During December 2017, HostGator put one of my accounts on hold. They claimed that I was using too many resources of the server. However, when I went and looked at my server usage, it was less than 20%, which was within the terms of service. My websites were on hold for days, and I finally decided to switch companies. With the help of a good friend, Alexander, I moved my sites over to Digital Ocean.
Digital Ocean offers VPS servers, but these are Lennix boxes, with just command-line access. There is no control panel or anything for a low-tech guy like me. However, Alexander helped me a lot, and I was up and running within the day. Thank you so much, Alexander, if you are reading this. You are a good friend. I owe you one, buddy.
There is another company called Server Pilot which will take care of all of the Lennix command line stuff for you through a sort of control panel type system. You can do this on your Digital Ocean server when you connect your server pilot account with them. It makes everything very easy. You can do almost anything you need to do for a regular set up with a free account on Server Pilot. I find Server Pilot to be an excellent resource.
So, when I started researching about where to get an SSL certificate, and how to install it on my Digital Ocean server, or using Server Pilot to do it, I found out something very good.
What I found out is that I can actually get a free SSL certificate for each of my sites through Server Pilot.
There is a company called Let’s Encrypt which offers free SSL certificates. From what I can find, this is not a small company or anything on heard of, and certainly, nothing that is suspicious. Let’s Encrypt has gotten funding from big companies like Facebook and Google, and they really are a company that issues a lot of SSL certificates these days.
Server Pilot offers a free SSL certificate from Let’s Encrypt for any site that you have on your account with them. There is one catch though. You must have a paid account with Server Pilot to use this SSL service. Server Pilot will take care of everything, installation, everything you could think of.
I decided this set up a paid account with them, it is only $10 per month, and you get other benefits as well. After setting up my paid account, I was able to install SSL on all of my websites (that is more than 30 websites) within 20 minutes or less. They made it easy, and it works great.
So, as you can see getting SSL was both very easy, and very cheap. I can’t complain at all. On my next article, I’m going to tell you of some surprising results that I have seen after going with SSL.