How to Set Up HTTPS on WordPress and vBulletin?

HTTPS: An Overview

Are you looking to move from HTTP to HTTPS (HyperText Transfer Protocol Secure) your WordPress or vBulletin site? But, you have no idea what SSL or HTTPS is. Do not worry, we will help you to cope with it.

What is the HTTPS and why we need it for?

The main aim of HTTPS is to protect the data transfer, to to proceed it in safe manner, to shield our personal or sensitive data, to provide a secure connection (especially if you are dealing with the payment information). Secure HTTP or HTTPS - is an encryption method that secures the connection between the users browser and the server. So, if you can see in your browser address bar HTTPS instead of HTTP - do not worry, it means the site you are working with has made sure that no one can steal your data.

How to Setup your WordPress to HTTPS

The requirements for using SSL in WordPress is not very rich and hard.

1/ All you need to do is purchase a SSL certificate (some of WordPress hosting providers offer free SSL!) and to ask your web hosting provider to install it on your server.

2/ Add `s` to your site URL fields (Log in WordPress CP->Settings ->General):

  • WordPress Address (URL)
  • Site Address (URL)

For example, if your URL is http://www.shopsite.com/forum, change it to https://www.shopsite.com/forum.

3/ Ask your host to configure redirect any http traffic to https.

How to do it by yourself

Set a forced SSL use via the .htaccess file of your WordPress site:

RewriteEngine On
RewriteCond %{SERVER_PORT} 80
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ https://yourdomain.com/$1 [R=301,L]

4/ Now, check your site URL to ensure that you have all properly installed in different browsers.

How to Setup your vBulletin site

1/ The first thing you will need to do is the same as with WordPress - to get a valid SSL certificate for your domain.
2/ The next step is quite simple. Log into your vBulletin AdminCP, and then follow the appropriate instructions below for your version. 

The key to all three vBulletin versions is that all you do is change HTTP to HTTPS. Do not alter any other part of the URL.

vBulletin 3
1. Go to Settings > Options > Site Name / URL / Contact Details.
2. Edit 'Forum URL' and add the 's' into the URL.
For example, if your URL is http://www.shopsite.com/forum, change it to https://www.shopsite.com/forum

vBulletin 4
1. Go to Settings > Options > Site Name / URL / Contact Details.
2. Edit 'Forum URL' and add the 's' into the URL.
For example, if your URL is http://www.shopsite.com/forum, change it to https://www.shopsite.com/forum

vBulletin 5
1. Go to vBulletin Options > vBulletin Options > Site Name / URL / Contact Details.
2. Edit these three settings: 'vBulletin URL'; 'Login URL'; 'Core URL' and add the 's' into the URL.
For example, if your URL is http://www.shopsite.com/forum, change it to https://www.shopsite.com/forum.
NOTE: Do not remove the word 'core' at the end of the core URL. You will break your site!

3/ Once you have changed these settings, go to AdminCP > Maintenance > General Update Tools, and rebuild the styles. (In vB3 this is AdminCP > Maintenance > Update Counters). Leave the default settings and just run this update tool.

4/ Your site should now load and run normally when using HTTPS in the URL. However, you now need to redirect any HTTP traffic to HTTPS, so that everyone using your site uses the secure connection. Again, in most cases, the simplest way to arrange this is to ask your host to configure it for you. They shouldn't charge for doing this, and it won't take them very long.
How to do it by yourself

Set a forced SSL use via the .htaccess file of your vBulletin site: access your cPanel account and then navigate to the File Manager service. Select the Home Directory and Show Hidden Files options. Press GO button to proceed. Navigate to the directory, where you have installed vBulletin, select the .htaccess file and then click on the Edit option at the top menu. Enter the following lines of code at the top of the file:

RewriteEngine On
RewriteCond %{SERVER_PORT} 80
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ https://domain.com/$1 [R=301,L]

Replace the domain.com with your actual domain name and then click Save Changes button.

5/ Check your site URL to ensure that you have all properly installed in different browsers.


Great! Now you have both sites with HTTPS. The last thing you need to do is to connect the platforms via vBSSO and have fun!

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