How do I get my Free SSL certificate?


Our free SSL certificates are available for all web site's hosted on a Brownrice VPS (starting at $7.95 per month w/ 2GB RAM and 10GB RAID 10 disk space on QUAD SSD's.)  If your site is on a VPS you likely already have the certificate in place as our systems are fully automated. However, if your certificate is not in place these are things you can check:

Make sure your site is on a VPS hosting account.

If your site is on a shared or basic hosting account you will not receive a free SSL certificate.  You can check this by logging into http://dashboard.brownrice.com with your Brownrice billing email address.  If the site is listed under Hosting you will not get a free certificate. However, if its under VPS you will!  If you'd like to upgrade from a basic hosting account to a VPS the cost is just an additional $1 per month.  Send us an email to support@brownrice.com and we'll upgrade you ASAP.

Make sure your site is LIVE and pointing to your VPS IP.

Once your site is live and DNS is pointed to our servers our automated SSL install scripts will attempt to issue your certificate within 20 minutes.

My site live, and on a VPS, but I still don't have a free SSL certificate.  What do I do now?

Our SSL certificate validation systems need to be able to access a directory called .well-known/acme-challenge within your live site in order to validate and install the certificate.   Please ensure that the /well-known directory is not behind password protection and that there are no mod_rewrite directives that prevent access to the /.well-known/ directory on your site.  You can test to see verifcationwill work by going to the verification URL at http://yourwebsite.com/.well-known/acme-challenge (replace yourwebsite.com with your web site address!) If you see a |-|-|-| then everything is in place and the certificate should be issued within the hour.  If you must have .htaccess password protection then you can add this mod_rewrite rule to disable the protection for the acme-challenge directory

SetEnvIf Request_URI "(.well-known/acme-challenge/)$" allow
Order allow,deny
Allow from env=allow
Satisfy any

My site is live, on a VPS, I can view the verification URL without a password, but I still don't have an SSL certificate? What do I do now?

Wait an hour.  If you still don't see the certificate check to ensure your VPS opertating systm is at least CentOS 6. You can check this by logging into http://dashboard.brownrice.com and clicking VPSs.  Scroll down to your VPS and note the OS Version.  If yours is CentOS 5 send us an email at support@brownrice.com and we can quickly upgrade your operating system for you at no charge. 

How many free certificates do I get? And will they work with subdomains?

There are no limits to the number of free certicates you can have.  And yes, they work with subdomains.