Why Does my FrontPage Site Fail with Shared SSL?

The reason the site is having problems with the shared SSL folder and FP extensions is that the shared SSL folder is not logically part of your site; the server views it as a wholly separate website (eg: ssl55.alentus.com). Your secure URL is just a virtual folder off the secured site and from the web servers point of view the SSL site and your site are completely different.

The shared SSL site does not have FrontPage installed and attempting to publish via FP to the secure URL will not work. Also, publishing to the SSL folder by your sites URL will cause problems when the published content tries to run using the secure URL.

With shared SSL, the only reliable method is to use FTP to publish and generally this means stand-alone ASP pages or .NET apps written to stand-apart from the rest of your site. These (and other) limitations are inherent in shared SSL and for a number of technical reasons there is no mechanism available to overcome this.

In short, the shared SSL mechanism is good for a few pages that need to be secured. These few pages are typically hand-coded and manually uploaded. Shared SSL is inappropriate for complex applications that are tightly bound to the non-SSL environment or require FP extensions to run.

To be able to publish and run code in secured portions of a site using FrontPage, VS or other tools that use the FP extensions you need to obtain an SSL certificate specifically for your site. With a certificate specific to your site, there is no need for a separate web service; anything you publish in the non-secured environment will work equally well in the secured environment. This is because with your own certificate, there is only the one site involved, and secured access only involves a protocol change (https -vs- http), but otherwise everything is still on the same logical web service.

To get your own certificate you need to obtain a CSR (certificate request) and have the custom certificate installed on the web server. Note that there are costs involved in doing this. The certificate itself usually carries a yearly charge from the issuer and we normally apply a small charge for installation and ongoing costs.

Alentus has made 1-Year, 2-Year and 3-Year SSL Certificates to its clients through our sister company www.lowpricedomains.com. These are available for purchase through the MyAccount.Alentus.com profile. Once logged in, select "Order SSL Certificate" from the left-hand menu, and select the SSL Certificate of your choice.

To start the Alentus side of the process of obtaining your own SSL Certificate, log on to the Alentus Support Center and submit a ticket to the Technical Support Department, selecting "SSL CSR Creation" from the Change Request Type drop-down menu. A CSR (Certificate Signing Request) will be needed by whatever certificate authority you choose to handle your SSL Certificate.

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