How to generate a CSR (Certificate Signing Request) using IIS

Description

As part of establishing TLS/SSL (Transport Layer Security/Secure Sockets Layer) for your server communication, you will need to install a signed certificate that verifies the identity of your server. The first step in ordering an SSL certificate is generating a Certificate Signing Request (CSR).

This is very easy to do on Windows in IIS7 using the following instructions.
 

Instructions

1. Click on the Start menu, go to Administrative Tools, and click on Internet Information Services (IIS) Manager.

2. Click on the name of the server in the Connections column on the left. Double-click on the Server Certificates icon in the center column.

3. In the Actions column on the right, click on Create Certificate Request.

4. Enter all of the following information about your company and the domain you are securing and then click Next.

  • Common Name: The fully qualified domain name (FQDN) of your server. This must match exactly what you type in your web browser or you will receive a name mismatch error. For example, myserver.example.com
  • Organization: The legal name of your organization. This should not be abbreviated and should include suffixes such as Inc, Corp, or LLC. For example, Aspera Inc.
  • Organizational Unit: The division of your organization handling the certificate (most CAs don't validate this field). For example, IT.
  • City/Locality: The city where your organization is located.  For example, San Francisco.
  • State/province: The state/region where your organization is located. This shouldn't be abbreviated. For example, California.
  • Country/Region: The two-letter ISO code for the country where your organization is location. For example, US.

5. Leave the default Cryptographic Service Provider. Increase the Bit length to 2048 bit or higher. Click Next.

6. Click the button with the three dots and enter a location and filename where you want to save the CSR file. Click Finish.

Once you have generated a CSR you can use it to order the certificate from a Certificate Authority. If you don't already have a favorite, you can compare SSL features from each provider using our SSL Wizard or by comparing cheap SSL certificates, Wildcard Certificates, or EV certificates. Once you paste the contents of the CSR and complete the ordering process, your order is validated, and you will receive the SSL certificate file.

If you need help on how to install your SSL certificate, see this Knowledge Base article.

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