Sites with SSL are needed more and more every day. It’s ubiquitious enforcement challenges website encryption and is even an effort that Google has taken up. Certbot and Let’s Encrypt are popular solutions for big and small businesses alike because of the ease of implementation. Certbot is a software client that can be downloaded on a server, like our Ubuntu 18.04, to install and auto-renew SSLs. It obtains these SSLs by working with the well known SSL provider called Let’s Encrypt. In this tutorial, we’ll be showing you a swift way of getting HTTPS enabled on your site. Let’s get started! Continue reading “How to Setup Let’s Encrypt on Ubuntu 18.04”
What is a Redirect?
A redirect is a web server function that will redirect traffic from one URL to another. Redirects are an important feature when the need arises. There are several different types of redirects, but the more common forms are temporary and permanent. In this article, we will provide some examples of redirecting through the vhost file, forcing a secure HTTPS connection, redirection to www and non-www as well as the difference between temporary and permanent redirects.
Common Methods for Redirects
Temporary redirects (response code: 302 Found) are helpful if a URL is temporarily being served from a different location. For example, these are helpful when performing maintenance and can redirect users to a maintenance page.
However, permanent redirects (response code: 301 Moved Permanently) inform the browser there was an old URL that it should forget and not attempt to access anymore. These are helpful when content has moved from one place to another.
How to Redirect
When it comes to Nginx, that is handled within a .conf file, typically found in the document root directory of your site(s), /etc/nginx/sites-available/directory_name.conf. The document root directory is where your site’s files live and it can sometimes be in the /html if you have one site on the server. Or if your server has multiple sites it can be at /domain.com. Either way that will be your .conf file name. In the /etc/nginx/sites-available/ directory you’ll find the default file that you can copy or use to append your redirects. Or you can create a new file name html.conf or domain.com.conf.
The first example we’ll cover is redirection of a specific page/directory to the new page/directory.
Temporary Page to Page Redirect
# Temporary redirect to an individual page
rewrite ^/oldpage$ http://www.domain.com/newpage redirect;
Permanent Page to Page Redirect
# Permanent redirect to an individual page
rewrite ^/oldpage$ http://www.domain.com/newpage permanent;
Permanent www to non-www Redirect
# Permanent redirect to non-www
rewrite ^/(.*)$ http://domain.com/$1 permanent;
Permanent Redirect to www
# Permanent redirect to www
rewrite ^/(.*)$ http://www.newdomain.com/$1 permanent;
Sometimes the need will arise to change the domain name for a website. In this case, a redirect from the old sites URL to the new sites URL will be very helpful in letting users know the domain was moved to a new URL.
The next example we’ll cover is redirecting an old URL to a new URL.
Permanent Redirect to New URL
# Permanent redirect to new URL
rewrite ^/(.*)$ http://newdomain.com/$1 permanent;
We’ve added the redirect using the rewrite directive we discussed earlier. The ^/(.*)$ regular expression will use everything after the / in the URL. For example, http://olddomain.com/index.html will redirect to http://newdomain.com/index.html. To achieve the permanent redirect, we add permanent after the rewrite directive as you can see in the example code.
When it comes to HTTPS and being fully secure it is ideal for forcing everyone to use https:// instead of http://.
Redirect to HTTPS
# Redirect to HTTPS
server_name domain.com www.domain.com;
return 301 https://example.com$request_uri;
After these rewrite rules are in place, testing the configuration prior to running a restart is recommended. Nginx syntax can be checked with the -t flag to ensure there is not a typo present in the file.
Nginx Syntax Check
If nothing is returned the syntax is correct and Nginx has to be reloaded for the redirects to take effect.
service nginx reload
For CentOS 7 which unlike CentOS 6, uses systemd:
systemctl restart nginx
Redirects on Managed WordPress/WooCommerce
If you are on our Managed WordPress/WooCommerce products, redirects can happen through the /home/s#/nginx/redirects.conf file. Each site will have their own s# which is the FTP/SSH user per site. The plugin called ‘Redirection’ can be downloaded to help with a simple page to page redirect, otherwise the redirects.conf file can be utilized in adding more specific redirects as well using the examples explained above.
Due to the nature of a managed platform after you have the rules in place within the redirects.conf file, please reach out to support and ask for Nginx to be reloaded. If you are uncomfortable with performing the outlined steps above, contact our support team via chat, ticket or a phone call. With Managed WordPress/WooCommerce you get 24/7 support available and ready to help you!
You may have noticed, when transferring a website, that the URL is still stuck on the old site even though you have changed the virtual host file to reflect the new domain name. Or you may see the URL entirely greyed out in your WordPress portal. This mismatch can happen if you can’t change the URL within WordPress to reflect the new site name. In this tutorial, we will show you how to change the URL through the database. Continue reading “How To Change Website Name in WordPress”
With the recent release of cPanel & WHM version 58 there has been the addition of an AutoSSL feature, this tool can be used to automatically provide Domain Validated SSLs for domains on your WHM & cPanel servers.
Initially this feature was released with support provided for only cPanel (powered by Comodo) based SSL certificates, with the plans to support more providers as things progressed. As of now, cPanel & WHM servers running version 58.0.17, and above, can now also use Let’s Encrypt as an SSL provider. More information on Let’s Encrypt can be found here. Continue reading “Enabling Let’s Encrypt for AutoSSL on WHM based Servers”
The command line terminal, or shell on your Linux server, is a potent tool for deciphering activity on the server, performing operations, or making system changes. But with several thousand executable binaries installed by default, what tools are useful, and how should you use them safely? Continue reading “Useful Command Line for Linux Admins”
Lately there’s been a lot of speculation about Googles up-coming changes to how sites without an SSL are going to be treated. As January draws towards a close we have seen an increase in customers with concerns of how this will affect their site. Both in terms of people being able to see it and how it might affect their search ranking.
This article aims to clear up some of the confusion and to demystify the changes. If you are unfamiliar with how SSL/TLS or HTTPS works please take a look at our article on the subject.
If you aren’t interested in how these changes came about feel free to skip down to: How These Changes Affect Your Site
Continue reading “Will my site be marked unsafe in Chrome 56+?”
Every single day 100s of terabytes of data is being transferred across the internet. In fact, based on Intel’s 2012 report, nearly 640K Gb of data is transferred every single minute. That’s more than 204 million Emails, 47,000 app downloads, 1.3 million YouTube videos watched and 6 million Facebook views. We’re talking about a seriously massive amount of data here. So how do we know if that data is being transferred securely? Enter the SSL/TLS protocols.
Continue reading “How does an SSL work?”
- These instructions are intended specifically for solving the error: “sec_error_ocsp_try_server_later”.
- This error can be displayed anytime a user visits a secure website using the https:// protocol in Firefox or Internet Explorer. It does not indicate a problem with the site itself, but occurs due to a change in the method these specific browsers use to check for revoked SSL certificates.
- We’ll be logging into WebHost Manager as root to resolve the error.
nginx is a free, open source, high-performance web server. Need HTTP and HTTPS but don’t want to run Apache? Then nginx may be your next go-to, at least for Linux.
- These instructions are intended specifically for installing nginx on Ubuntu 15.04.
- I’ll be working from a Liquid Web Self Managed Ubuntu 15.04 server, and I’ll be logged in as root.