Created on Wednesday, 12 March 2014 09:0012 March 2014
As we pre-announced a few weeks ago, you can now activate a SSL certificate for your websites without needing to buy a dedicated IP address.
This can be done with the help of a shared IP address that is assigned to the hosting server.
The ‘Shared IPs for SSL’ option is now integrated into the SSL Certificates section of the Control Panel.
Why a shared IP address for SSL certificates?
The option to use a shared IP address for a SSL has been made available because of the integration of the SNI protocol support into modern browsers. You can read a list of all the modern browsers that support the SNI protocol in the following Wikipedia article.
This way, even if you cannot afford to activate a dedicated IP address for your website, you will be able to make it secure for your visitors. A website with a SSL that uses a shared IP address will still have ‘https’ next to your domain name in the browser's address bar and will look just as secure as a normal site using a dedicated IP.
Please note though that while a shared IP address makes a website secure, it does not add to its uniqueness as a dedicated IP would do because when sharing an IP address with other sites, if someone tries to open the website using the IP address they may randomly open another one of those sites instead of yours.
Nevertheless, the shared IP address is a great free alternative if you just have a small e-store that needs to build a secure image in the eyes of potential customers.
Once you are ready to invest in a dedicated IP address, it is easy to switch from a shared to a dedicated IP for your SSL certificate.
How do you use Shared IPs for SSL certificates?
Just follow these easy steps detailed below.
In the SSL Certificates section, click on the 'Add SSL Certificate' button on the top right side of the page. In the pop-up window, we have set as default the option to configure the SSL certificate automatically. This way, our technicians will install and set it up on your account.
After filling in the details for the certificate, you will be able to choose between two options:
to get a brand new dedicated IP address for it;
to use an existing dedicated IP address of your own, or to use a shared IP address;
With the first option, you will be able to order a dedicated IP address that will be used for the new SSL certificate exclusively. This will give you full independence and will ensure the safety of your online presence at the same time.
However, if you are not yet ready to invest in a new dedicated IP address, you could take advantage of the alternative:
Here you can choose to associate the certificate with an existing dedicated IP address. This IP address needs to be free, i.e. not associated with any other SSL certificate.
Alternatively, you can choose to use a shared IP address for their SSL:
Then you will click on the 'Order SSL certificate' button and wait for the SSL certificate to be installed and set up.
It takes about an hour for the SSL certificate request to be verified by the registry and a few seconds for it to be installed in our system.
In our next post we will explain the procedure for verifying and installing a certificate i.e. – what happens after you order it in auto-configure mode.