An easy way to create a self signed certificate

I needed to create a self signed cert to test my WCF service with username authentication in my dev environment (if you need help with this, I recommend http://www.devatwork.nl/2007/05/wcf-username-authentication/). Tried using Windows makecert cmd utility but it was give me problems. So I found a nifty tool from pluralsite called self-cert (http://www.pluralsight-training.net/community/blogs/keith/archive/2009/01/22/create-self-signed-x-509-certificates-in-a-flash-with-self-cert.aspx). It has a simple intuitive UI and works like a charm. But don’t forget to run it as an administrator.

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Installing SSL on IIS7 with host headers

I have one wildcard SSL certificate and needed to use it on multiple subdomains. The IIS7 UI doesn’t allow you to specify the host header when configuring an ssl binding. The only way I found to do it was by using appcmd from the command prompt. The command works as such:

appcmd set site /site.name:"<IISSiteName>" /+bindings.[protocol='https',bindingInformation='*:443:<hostHeaderValue>']

<IISSiteName> is the name of your site in IIS. <hostHeaderValue> is the host header you’re trying to bind to.

I found this tidbit on http://www.sslshopper.com/article-ssl-host-headers-in-iis-7.html. According to their steps, you should install the ssl on one site with the admin console first before using appcmd. I’m not sure if this is true. I assume you can use appcmd for all of them.

WordPress on IIS 7

I just installed WordPress 2.8.4 on Windows 2008 and IIS 7. There were several components that needed to be installed before the famous WordPress 5 minute installation could commence. These included the PHP server, MySQL, phpMySQL, and URL Rewrite for IIS 7. Dave Lawlor wrote a great series of articles on how to properly install and configure everything specifically for WordPress. Go to http://www.trainsignaltraining.com/installing-wordpress-on-iis7/2008-10-06/ to check it out. While installing all these, I only had to restart the server once and that was optional URL Rewrite extension. After all prereqs were installed, it was a breeze. I guess this open source stuff isn’t that bad after all.