How to Install Certbot for TLS on Ubuntu 18.04

Updated , by Rajakavitha Kodhandapani

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What is Certbot?

Certbot is a tool that automates the process of getting a signed certificate via Let’s Encrypt to use with TLS.

For most operating system and web server configurations, Certbot creates signed certificates, manages the web server to accept secure connections, and can automatically renew certificates it has created. In most cases, Certbot can seamlessly enable HTTPS without causing server downtime.

Before You Begin

Make sure you have registered a Fully Qualified Domain Name (FQDN) and set up A and AAAA DNS records that point to your Linode’s public IPv4 and IPv6 addresses. Consult our DNS Records: An Introduction and DNS Manager guides for help with setting up a domain.

Note
If you’re using Apache, change each instance of nginx to apache in the following sections.
  1. Install the Certbot and web server-specific packages, then run Certbot:

     sudo apt-get update
     sudo add-apt-repository ppa:certbot/certbot
     sudo apt-get install python-certbot-nginx
     sudo certbot --nginx
    
  2. Certbot will ask for information about the site. The responses will be saved as part of the certificate:

      # sudo certbot --nginx
        Saving debug log to /var/log/letsencrypt/letsencrypt.log
        Plugins selected: Authenticator nginx, Installer nginx
        Enter email address (used for urgent renewal and security notices) (Enter 'c' to
        cancel): [email protected]
        - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
        Please read the Terms of Service at
        https://letsencrypt.org/documents/LE-SA-v1.2-November-15-2017.pdf. You must
        agree in order to register with the ACME server at
        https://acme-v02.api.letsencrypt.org/directory
        - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
        (A)gree/(C)ancel: A
    
        - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
        Would you be willing to share your email address with the Electronic Frontier
        Foundation, a founding partner of the Let's Encrypt project and the non-profit
        organization that develops Certbot? We'd like to send you email about our work
        encrypting the web, EFF news, campaigns, and ways to support digital freedom.
        - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
        (Y)es/(N)o: N
        No names were found in your configuration files. Please enter in your domain
        name(s) (comma and/or space separated)  (Enter 'c' to cancel): www.rajie.wiki
        Obtaining a new certificate
        Performing the following challenges:
        http-01 challenge for www.example.com
        Waiting for verification...
        Cleaning up challenges
        Deploying Certificate to VirtualHost /etc/nginx/sites-enabled/default
    
        Please choose whether or not to redirect HTTP traffic to HTTPS, removing HTTP access.
        - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
        1: No redirect - Make no further changes to the webserver configuration.
        2: Redirect - Make all requests redirect to secure HTTPS access. Choose this for
        new sites, or if you're confident your site works on HTTPS. You can undo this
        change by editing your web server's configuration.
        - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
        Select the appropriate number [1-2] then [enter] (press 'c' to cancel): 2
        Redirecting all traffic on port 80 to ssl in /etc/nginx/sites-enabled/default
        - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
    
  3. Certbot will also ask if you would like to automatically redirect HTTP traffic to HTTPS traffic. It is recommended that you select this option.

  4. When the tool completes, Certbot will store all generated keys and issued certificates in the /etc/letsencrypt/live/$domain directory, where $domain is the name of the domain entered during the Certbot certificate generation step.

    Note
    Certbot recommends pointing your web server configuration to the default certificates directory or creating symlinks. Keys and certificates should not be moved to a different directory.

    Finally, Certbot will update your web server configuration so that it uses the new certificate, and also redirects HTTP traffic to HTTPS if you chose that option.

  5. If you have a firewall configured on your Linode, you may need to add Firewall Rules to allow incoming and outgoing connections to the HTTPS service. If you’re using UFW for example, you can enable HTTP and HTTPS traffic with the following commands:

     sudo systemctl start ufw && sudo systemctl enable ufw
     sudo ufw allow http
     sudo ufw allow https
     sudo ufw enable
    
    Note
    For more information on UFW and how to install it on your Linode, see our How to Configure a Firewall with UFW guide

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