On August 6, 2014, Google, in its official blog Webmaster Central blog, officially announced that the use of HTTPS became a ranking factor. This means that those who make use of an SSL certificate can get a placement in search results, better than another website that does not use an HTTPS encryption.

What Is SSL?

SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) is an open protocol that enables the secure exchange of encrypted information between a Website and the browser, so you can establish a secure connection between the server and a web browser. This way, you can protect sensitive data such as email addresses, credit card information, passwords etc., from possible attacks by hackers.

But SSL certificates have a cost that usually for you to $ 10 a year, but thanks to the Let’s Encrypt project is now possible to activate an unlimited number of certificates for free. It’s right, you read that right, free!

What is Let’s Encrypt and its advantages

Let’s Encrypt is a free, automated, and open certificate authority (CA), issues That domain-validated certificates security. The project is supported by famous companies like Facebook, Mozilla, Google, Siteground, Autommatic, and has as main goal to make encryption a Web standard, to offer everyone a safe web browsing.

In fact, let’s Encrypt, it allows installing on their domains, an SSL certificate free of charge and without the need for a dedicated IP.

The main features of Let’s Encrypt are:

  • It is free: you can install it for free on all your domains.
  • Automatic: its installation is very simple and quick, and the deadline is automatically renewed.
  • Secure: uses the highest standards of security for the exchange of information.
  • Transparent: All certificates issued or revoked will be recorded and publicly available for anyone to inspect.
  • No dedicated IP: you will not need to spend more money for a dedicated IP.
  • Compatibility: Compatible with all browsers.

Unfortunately, not all hosting support Let’s Encrypt, Large Hosting Providers services like Godaddy or Hostgator, they do not allow their customers to use LE.
Here you can find the latest list of supported Hosting.

Siteground + Let’s Encrypt = SSL Certificate free

Siteground, besides being one of the best hosting providers, is also a partner in the project, and recently officially announced that LE is available for all customers with a shared hosting plan. But if you’re holding a cloud or dedicated hosting plan, do not despair .. short you can also install a certificate Let’s Encrypt, or request for service technical, who will activate it for free.

But how do you install a certificate Let’s Encrypt?

1) Install LE is really simple. First you will need to access your Siteground account, click the My Account tab and then go to your cPanel.



2) Now go to the Let’s Encrypt tool in the Security tab.



3) Select the domain where you want to install the certificate, and click on Install.


4) Next, you have to accept our terms and conditions and will be automatically installed on your free certificate.



Possible Problem of Mixing Content

When you install an SSL certificate on a new domain, all the pages and all the resources such as images, are served automatically with the HTTPS protocol, but if the certificate is enabled on a domain already in use, you may have some problems mixing content, content that is served with HTTPS and others with the classic HTTP. To solve this problem, you will need to update all addresses served with HTTP and update them with the HTTPS.

This article lists the various methods to solve the problem Mixing Content.


Force HTTPS or Relative URLs for Multisite

In the case of WordPress Multisite installation, you may need to update the URL directly from the database. To do this, you will need to follow these steps, as suggested in this discussion.

WARNING: This operation is very risky if you have no knowledge of a database. You should perform a test on a local server and then replicate all about your live server. Always remember to make a full backup of the database prior to any operation.

Download a copy of the database. Open in text editor.

FIND ALL: ‘siteurl’, ‘http: //
REPL ALL: ‘siteurl’, ‘https: //

FIND ALL: ‘home’, ‘http: //
REPL ALL: ‘home’, ‘https: //

FIND ALL: src = \ “https://yourdomain.com/
REPL ALL: src = \ “https://yourdomain.com/

FIND ALL: a href = \ “https://yourdomain.com/
REPL ALL: a href = \ “https://yourdomain.com/

When you’re done, you will need to save the changes. Now you will need to delete all the tables of the old database and import the updated database file.


HTTPS to apply to all new blogs

Connect to the server and download /wp-includes/ms-blogs.php. Open in our PHP editor.

Locate the Following section of code (beginning on line 38/40 in WordPress v4.4.1):

function get_blogaddress_by_id ($ blog_id) {
$ Bloginfo get_blog_details = ((int) $ blog_id, false); // Get only bare details!
esc_url return ( ‘http: //’. $ bloginfo-> domain. $ bloginfo-> path);
Replace the above code with the Following code:

function get_blogaddress_by_id ($ blog_id, $ scheme = null) {
if (! in_array ($ scheme, array ( ‘http’, ‘https’)))
$ Scheme = is_ssl ()? ‘Https’: ‘http’;

$ Bloginfo get_blog_details = ((int) $ blog_id, false); // Get only bare details!
esc_url return ( “$ scheme: //”. $ bloginfo-> domain. $ bloginfo-> path);
Save and upload to server, replacing the previous version.


In conclusion

As you saw, with Let’s Encrypt, obtain an SSL certificate is easy and free. We are only at the beginning of a small but great revolution in the Internet network security.

Did you find this tutorial helpful? You have questions concerning this topic? Let us know in the comments.



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Fabio Sarcona
Front-End DeveloperCreative Child Themes
I am a front-end developer and user experience design in the DNA. I love every nuance of my work, but when they are not in front of my computer I can find with my parachute in the clouds!