Installing SSL Certificate on NGINX

In this article you will learn how to install an SSL certificate on an NGINX web server and set up an HTTPS redirect.

Before You Start

Before you start, please make sure you have downloaded your certificate files.

After downloading your certificate, you should have the following certificate files:

  • certificate.crt
  • cabundle.crt
  • privatekey.pem

Step 1: Upload Certificate Files

First and foremost, you will need to upload the certificate files above (certificate.crt, cabundle.crt and privatekey.pem) to your NGINX server in a directory of your choice.

Step 2: Merge .crt Files

NGINX requires all .crt files to be merged in order to allow SSL installation. You will need to run the following command in order to merge your certificate.crt and cabundle.crt files.

$ cat certificate.crt ca_bundle.crt >> certificate.crt

Step 3: Edit Virtual Hosts File

Next, you will need to find your NGINX virtual hosts file and add some code to point it to your new SSL certificate. As soon as you have opened your virtual hosts file, create a copy of the existing non-secure server module and paste it below the original. 

If you need your site to be accessible through both HTTPS (secure) and HTTP (non-secure), you will need a separate server module for each connection type. 

This is how your config file should look - 

server {
    listen   443;
    ssl    on;
    ssl_certificate    /etc/ssl/certificate.crt; 
    ssl_certificate_key    /etc/ssl/private.key;
    access_log /var/log/nginx/nginx.vhost.access.log;
    error_log /var/log/nginx/nginx.vhost.error.log;
    location / {
    root   /home/www/public_html/;
    index  index.html;
Make sure you replace with your actual domain name such as

Finally, you will need to restart your NGINX server in order for your changes to come into effect. You can run the command below to restart your NGINX server:

sudo /etc/init.d/nginx restart

Check Installation

Go to SSL Zen Plugin and click on the Next button on Step 3. Our plugin will automatically detect if you have installed the SSL certificate correctly. If you have, click on the Next button in Step 4 and we will replace your website http url with https.

Congratulations, you have completed all required steps to install your SSL certificate.

Did this answer your question? Thanks for the feedback There was a problem submitting your feedback. Please try again later.