How to install SSL certifiate on Apache?

Required steps

1. Extract all of the contents of the ZIP file that was sent to you and copy/move them to your server. The extracted contents will typically be named: and

Note: In case you did not receive a Bundle from Sectigo in the email, you have to download and concatenate the following files in this order:

Your PositiveSSL Certificate -
Intermediate CA Certificate - SectigoRSADomainValidationSecureServerCA.crt
Intermediate CA Certificate - USERTrustRSAAddTrustCA.crt
Root CA Certificate - AddTrustExternalCARoot.crt

The first file ( can be obtained from the web panel at ClouDNS. The remaining 3 files must be downloaded from Sectigo.

Example command for Linux:

cat SectigoRSADomainValidationSecureServerCA.crt USERTrustRSAAddTrustCA.crt AddTrustExternalCARoot >

Example command for Windows:

type SectigoRSADomainValidationSecureServerCA.crt USERTrustRSAAddTrustCA.crt AddTrustExternalCARoot >

2. Move all of the certificate related files to their appropriate directories.

Move the Private Key that was generated earlier to the ssl.key directory, which is typically found in /etc/ssl/. This must be a directory which only Apache can access.
Move the and to the ssl.crt directory, which is typically found in the /etc/ssl/ directory.

Note: In case you did not receive a Bundle from Sectigo in the email, please refer to step 1 in this article.

3. Edit the file that contains the SSL configuration with your favorite text editor.

Examples: nano, vi, pico, emacs, mousepad, notepad, notepad++, etc.

Note: The location of this file may vary from each distribution. It will be referenced in the Apache global configuration file. Look for the lines starting with include.

Apache Configuration File:

Fedora/CentOS/RHEL: /etc/httpd/conf/httpd.conf
Debian and Debian based: /etc/apache2/apache2.conf

SSL Configuration File:
Some possible names:
In the /etc/apache2/sites-enabled/ directory.

Note: If need be please consult your distribution's documentation on Apache and SSL or navigate to the Apache Foundation's Apache2 Documentation.

4. In the VirtualHost section of the file please add these directives if they do not exist. It is best to comment out what is already there and add the below entries.

SSLEngine on
SSLCertificateKeyFile /etc/ssl/ssl.key/server.key
SSLCertificateFile /etc/ssl/ssl.crt/
SSLCertificateChainFile /etc/ssl/ssl.crt/ *** .

Apache 1.3.x:

SSLEngine on
SSLCertificateKeyFile /etc/ssl/ssl.key/server.key
SSLCertificateFile /etc/ssl/ssl.crt/
SSLCACertificateFile /etc/ssl/ssl.crt/

Apache 2.x:

SSLEngine on
SSLCertificateKeyFile /etc/ssl/ssl.key/server.key
SSLCertificateFile /etc/ssl/ssl.crt/yourDomainName.crt
SSLCertificateChainFile /etc/ssl/ssl.crt/

Single SSL on multiple servers

These days it often happens to have multiple web servers for a single web page. If this is your case, you do not have to buy an SSL certificate for each server. You can use one single SSL certificate for all of them. To do it, you have to install the Private Key from the web server, on which CSR was generated and the certificates sent by Sectigo on each web server. Have in mind, that if you are using Wildcard SSL certificate, the CSR must be generated with Wildcard. For example, if you will generate a CSR for Wildcard SSL certificate for domain name, the CSR must be generated for *

If you have chosen to have a password on your private key, you will be prompted to enter it each time Apache is started or restarted. Apache will not fully start until the password is entered.

The configuration file is often called httpd.conf or apache.conf, although sometimes the SSL-specific section is placed in a separate file called ssl.conf and linked from the main configuration by an 'Include' command. Sometimes, theVirtualHost section will be in a specific file for that site, in a sub-directory often labelled sites-enabled/.

Much of the layout of Apache's configuration files and directory naming conventions is controlled by the distribution of OS you are using. It is recommended that you look at the distribution's own site and documentation to confirm the locations.

Last modified: 2024-02-06
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