How to Create Wildcard SSL Certificate OpenSSL: How to Renew SSL Certificate
Wildcard SSL certificates provide cost-effective security for the main domain and its subdomains. Users can secure an unlimited number of subdomains with a single wildcard SSL certificate. Let’s explore the intricacies of the process of generating a CSR for a wildcard SSL certificate using OpenSSL.
Wildcard SSL certificates protect a single domain while ensuring the security of an unlimited number of subdomains. To produce an SSL certificate, consumers must generate a Certificate Signing Request (CSR). To generate a Wildcard SSL CSR, OpenSSL must be installed on the system if it still needs to be installed. Following this, an OpenSSL request is submitted along with the domain name and details.
Let's examine the intricacies of the procedure to generate a CSR for a Wildcard SSL certificate using OpenSSL.
What is a Wildcard SSL Certificate?
Wildcard SSL certificates provide a primary domain and its subdomains with cost-effective security. Users can protect an unlimited number of subdomains with a single Wildcard SSL certificate. The domain names of these certificates contain a wildcard character (*). The primary domain is linked to these subdomains.
Types of SSL Certificates
There are 3 types of SSL certificates:
- DV (Domain Validation) — Industry-standard encryption can be obtained the quickest, easiest, and most affordable with Domain Validation (DV) SSL certificates. Proof of ownership for the secured domain is required for this validation type, normally supplied in minutes.
- OV (Organization Validation) — An organization must verify that it is a duly registered business and provide proof of domain ownership for the domain it wants to be granted. In this phase, information such as the organization's name, phone number, and address will be confirmed. Although they are still not ideal for websites that gather sensitive data, these are more appropriate for websites with a public face because they can only be provided to registered organizations rather than to individuals.
- EV (Extended Validation) — For eCommerce websites, Extended Validation (EV) SSL certificates are the industry standard and offer the highest confidence level. In addition to meeting the authentication requirements for an OV SSL, website owners must pass a more stringent vetting process conducted by a human professional to obtain one. Customers may feel more confident in the authenticity of a website and their online transaction procedure when humans are involved in the validation process.
In addition, they have additional options:
- WildCard — confirms the domain and all its subdomains at the next level;
- SAN — confirms domains according to the list specified when receiving an SSL certificate.
How to Install SSL Certificate and Renew SSL Certificate
By acquiring an SSL certificate, your website can securely transfer data from point A to point B using the HTTPS protocol. This is of the utmost importance when transmitting sensitive data, such as personally identifiable information (PII) and credit card information, from contact forms and login pages.
Here are several simple steps that will help you to install an SSL certificate easily and fast.
- Collect Requirements
Now more than ever, implementing HTTPS on a website is straightforward. It is recommended that novices initiate contact with their hosting provider to inquire about the available options.
Several simple steps are required to implement SSL on a website:
- Specific hosts provide complimentary SSL, which may include one-click SSL alternatives.
- Numerous hosts offer paid SSL and will install the certificates on your behalf.
- Users at the intermediate level can produce an SSL certificate at no cost.
Irrespective of the certificate type selected, the encryption and security level remain consistent.
- Buy an SSL Certificate
How to do it? You can buy an SSL certificate from, for instance, the following CAs - SSLS, COMODO, DigiCert, and others or publish for free using the Let's Encrypt solution.
- Generate Certificate
Connect to your server and deploy a tool that generates SSL certificates now that you have gathered all the necessary information.
You require a method to access your server from your computer and execute SSH commands.
- Submit CSR to CA
The CSR must be submitted to the CA during the SSL certificate purchase. After validating your information, the CA will issue the SSL certificate.
- Download SSL Certificate Files
Download the SSL certificate files from the CA once they have been issued. Generally, these consist of the principal certificate file, intermediate certificates, and occasionally the root certificate file.
- Implement SSL Certification on the Server
The method by which the certificate is installed varies by server type.
- Restart your Web Server
Restart the web server once the SSL certificate has been configured to ensure the modifications take effect.
- Confirm SSL Configuration
Validate the installation of your SSL certificate by utilizing online tools or browser extensions.
- Check for Renewal
You may confirm that your renewed SSL certificate is installed appropriately using online tools or browser plugins.
How to create a wildcard SSL? Add an asterisk to the beginning of the domain(s) and then a period to create wildcard certificates. There is no need to re-enter the root domain because wildcard certificates will safeguard the root domain as well.
Keep in mind that the exact procedures may change depending on the web server software and hosting company you use. For instructions on how to renew your certificate, always consult the paperwork your CA sent you. To prevent service outages, renew your certificate before it expires.