Free SSL certificate on Nginx with LetsEncrypt

Let’sEncrypt (website) is a fairly new initiative aiming to make SSL HTTP communication over the Internet as abundantly available as possible. And they have the right idea – make it free!

So, at work we have an internal application we’re using for our development process that I wanted to secure with SSL. Our main certificate isn’t of the wildcard variety and doesn’t have any more SANs available. Since adding more SANs is pretty expensive and all I wanted was to secure an internal server, Let’sEncrypt offering was the easy choice.

I went to Let’sEncrypt’s site to learn how to install it on my Linux (16) with Nginx web server. There wasn’t a tutorial there available. There were links to other tools. They recommend certbot but they also have a very long list of other clients to choose from.

I wanted the easiest solution so tried certbot but their tutorial leaves a lot to be desired so I turned to Google for advice. There are of course enough pages explaining how to do this but they seem a little out dated and still unclear on some of the steps needed so I decided to write my own tutorial in the hope it will help others in the future.

Here goes:

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