How to install SSL Certificate on Windows Server 2016 without IIS

Installing an SSL Certificate on Windows server 2016 without IIS is such complex and technical work one can do. I’m sure, after reading this article you will be able to install an SSL certificate on your windows server without IIS.


Let us first understand a few technical terms:


  • SSL: SSL stands for Secure, Sockets, and Layer. It is used to ensure a strong internet connection. It secures and safeguards the data sent between two systems. It prevents modification of transferred data by third parties or hackers.


  • IIS: IIS Stands for Internet Information Services, it’s a Microsoft based general and flexible windows system. It is used to serve HTML files and pages that are being requested.


So, let’s dive into the process of installing an SSL certificate without IIS on your windows server.


To install an SSL certificate, you will need to use the certificate snap-in in MMC.exe (Microsoft Management Console). As an SSL certificate is a machine certificate, make sure to open the certificate snap-in from your local computer.


Here are the steps to import the certificate:


  1. Open certificate snap-in for the user, from your local computer.
  2. Go to the console tree and then click on the logical store where you are going to import the certificate.


  1. Point to All Tasks on the Action menu, then click Import to launch the Certificate Import Wizard.


  1. Enter the name of the file containing the certificate to be imported. (You can also navigate to the file by clicking Browse.)


  1. If it is a PKCS #12 file, perform the following steps:


Enter the password that was used to encrypt the private key.


  • (Optional) Enable strong private key protection by checking the Enable strong private key protection box.


  • (Optional) Select the Mark key as exportable check box if you want to back up or transport your keys later.


Choose one of the following options:


  • Click Automatically choose the certificate store based on the type of certificate if the certificate should be automatically placed in a certificate store based on the type of certificate.


  • Select Place all certificates in the following store, click Browse, and select the certificate store to use if you wish to specify where the certificate is stored.


Additional factors to consider


  • The user or an administrator can manage user certificates. Only an administrator or user with the right permissions can manage the certificates issued to a computer or service.


  • See Add the Certificates Snap-in to an MMC to access the Certificates snap-in.


  • When you enable robust private key protection, you’ll be prompted for a password every time you use the private key. This is useful if you don’t want your private key to be used without your permission.


After you’ve finished importing the certificates, the file from which you imported them will stay intact. If the file is no longer needed, you can delete it using Windows Explorer.

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