X.509 Certs For Personal Use

John Levine johnl at iecc.com
Sat Feb 18 03:32:10 UTC 2012

I use these guys: http://www.cheapssls.com/

They sell Geotrust and Comodo certs for under $10/yr.  The hassle
level is quite low.  First you order a cert providing the usual
billing info, then you go to their web site, pick the order you just
paid for, go to a screen where you paste in your signing request, and
pick which e-mail address to send the confirmation message to.  Click
a URL in the confirmation message and the signed cert shows up in a
few minutes.  The certs are chained, but I've had no acceptance
problems once I realized I had to to add an extra Apache config line
to serve the intermediate cert.

If you get a Comodo cert for example.com, it'll also work for
www.example.com.  Other than that, they seem to be equivalent.

If you just want something for testing, http://freessl.com/ will
provide a real 30 day Geotrust cert for free, with similarly low
hassle.  At the end of the 30 days, you can renew the cert into a paid
one at cheapssls or any other Geotrust reseller.

I realize there are places that will provide totally free certs, but
their hassle level is far greater.  For $24 I can get a Comodo cert
that will make my SSL complaints go away for three years, which seems
like a bargain to me.


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