6
Sept

Adding SSL to a Website

Google suggests it and even hints at a ranking improvement. SSL is slowly becoming an accepted piece of the online world. Here's what Quietwater learned from a recent SSL update exercise.

Server type matters! Windows (aka NT aka IIS) tends to be more involved relative to a Linux (usually Apache) server. Most hosting companies are now familiar with SSL certificates and can provide at least some help if needed. As always, one change at a time is BEST! For this project, migrating to a new hosting plan, platform, and server was done concurrently with adding SSL certificates. This ensured a higher stress project.

Moral of the story: make changes one at a time. Let the dust settle in between changes. And, as always, make copies of everything, with meaningful file names!

SSL. TLDN. .htaccess. Which domain name to protect? DNS. oh my!

Choices are involved in this, so a bit of forward looking planning is good, especially if your marketing plans include a fresh batch of media printed with the new 'https' moniker in lieu of the old 'http'.
     What do I mean?
I mean 'yourname.com' is DIFFERENT from 'www.yourname.com'. BOTH are machine names and both titles can take a viewer to different places. EACH of those machine names should have a separate certificate.
     Or?
Or you can go into the murky dark spaces of the internet, the kind accessed only by means of archaic DOS commands, typed in a black box with no GUI. Where you can create a few low-level scripts that will take input and rewrite it to something else, e.g. 'www.yourname.com' and rewrite it to 'yourname.com' This allows for one certificate and rewrites all incoming URLs to match the URL on the certificate. The horror.
     Except it is so dang easy to use, especially if you are using an example from the tech support people that you likely just called.

     It's OK. You can do it!

By the way, buying more certificates for longer periods of time is cheaper, if you can afford it. Five certificates for three years is significantly cheaper than one cert for one year.

There's more to this tale. Call us and let's talk about doing the same thing to your stable of websites, URLs and domains!

Contact Quietwater Media