How to Create a Self Signed Certificates with Windows Server 2019.

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Hi. How are you? Let’s continue exploring the features of Windows Server 2019. In this opportunity, we will talk about how to create self signed certificates on Windows Server 2019. In the first place let’s define what is an SSL (Secure Socket Layer) Certificate. It encrypts all data between the server and the client’s browser. Consequently, if an attacker wants to access the information exchanged between the two, he won’t be able to decipher it. As you can see, it is a fundamental aspect of the security of a website. In addition, it is indispensable to be able to activate HTTPS on the site.

Generating SSLcertificates

On the other hand, there are several sites online to acquire these certificates: comodo, Symantec and GlobalSign for example. These sites offer SSL certificates at different prices, depending on the customer’s needs. However, we have the possibility to generate self-signed certificates using Windows Server 2019. For this, we will use Internet Information Services, if you don’t know how to activate it, go through our tutorial. Obviously, the effectiveness of a self-signed certificate is less than that of one signed by a company. However, we can use these certificates to work on our intranet or publish sites on the Internet as well. So let’s see how to create self signed certificates on Windows Server 2019.

Create self signed certificates using IIS manager

From the Server Manager, locate IIS in the left pane.

IIS
IIS

Then right-click on the server and run the IIS manager

Running Internet Information Services (IIS) Manager
Running Internet Information Services (IIS) Manager

Click on the name of the server in the left column connections. Then double click on Server Certificates

Select Server Certificates
Select Server Certificates

In the right column, select Create Self-Signed Certificate.

Create Self-Signed Certificates
Create Self-Signed Certificates

Choose the name of your preference to identify the certificate and press OK to continue.

Specify a friendly name to the new certificate
Specify a friendly name to the new certificate

Finally, we have a certificate valid for one year. We can see it in the section Server Certificates

Certificate finally generated
Certificate finally generated

Testing the certificate.

To test the performance of the certificate we just created, we will open the IIS Manager.

Binding the certificate
Binding the certificate

Next, press the Add button.

Adding the self signed certificate
Adding the self signed certificate

In the next window, click on Type and select https, then on SSL Certificate choose the newly created certificate and press OK to continue.

Select the new SSL certificate
Select the new SSL certificate

We should now see the bindings for port 443. Next, press the Add button. Now close the window to finish.

Site Bindings
Site Bindings

All right, let’s try the new certificate. In the IIS Manager, go to the Action panel on the right and select Browse *.443 (https).

Browse https site
Browse https site

We’ll immediately see a security alert. This is because the browser cannot verify the authenticity of the certificate since the website is the one that provides the information. We must establish an exception to this alert by clicking on advanced, and then on Accept the risk and continue.

Adding an exception to localhost
Adding an exception to localhost

Once this is done, we’ll see the https navigation enabled on the website.

Localhost with https activated
Localhost with https activated

Conclusion

We have seen how to generate a self-signed certificate in Windows Server 2019. As we already mentioned, this will be of great help to the security of our websites. I hope you enjoyed this tutorial, in next releases, we will continue studying on Windows Server 2019. In fact, let’s see how to generate error-free SSL certificates for local development. In conclusion, has been a profitable way up to here, before saying goodbye I want to invite you to join our group on Facebook.

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