Installing a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate on Microsoft Internet Information Services 7.x is easy with the new user interface, but is often confusing for those new to IIS 7. Getting the certificate for Microsoft IIS 7.x begins the same way no matter what vendor is providing the certificate; the first step is to create a Certificate Signing Request (CSR) on the IIS server. The configuration technician or implementation team (referred to as “the tech” going forward) should use the menu path Start, Administrative Tools, Internet Information Services (IIS) Manager to get to the server management area.
From the IIS Manager, the tech should choose the server name for which a CSR is needed. In the middle of the IIS Manager screen, the center pane lists features for the server. If the tech switches the “group by” option to Category, the tech can easily locate and double-click Server Certificates in the Security Group. If there are existing certificates for this server name, they are listed; to add a new SSL certificate, the tech should choose Create Certificate Request from the actions pane (at far right) by clicking it one time.
The Request Certificate wizard that appears contains the fields that require completion to send the CSR and get the SSL certificate. After the tech enters and submits all of the necessary data, the CSR is saved to a file name. Now that the tech has the completed CSR file, the file should go to the certificate vendor selected to generate the SSL, typically via the vendor’s website. The time between submission and returned SSL varies greatly between vendors; indeed, the next step cannot take place until the SSL file is provided by the vendor.
Once the SSL file is received, the tech should return to the IIS Manager Security area. Under Server Certificates, find the Complete Certificate Signing Request link and click once. The tech should browse to the location of the SSL file and install it through the wizard. The tech should go back in the server manager to the site name listed under Sites. In the rightmost pane, the tech should click Add Binding to add the HTTPS type, port 443 (unless another is desired) and choose the SSL certificate installed in the wizard before. Now, the SSL certificate is installed on the Microsoft IIS 7.x server and ready for use.
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