HTTPS certificate with Dehydrated

Dehydrated - is a client for signing certificates with an ACME-server (e.g. Let's Encrypt). This client supports both ACME v1 and the new ACME v2 including support for wildcard certificates.

Install Dehydrated

curl -Lo /usr/local/bin/dehydrated
chmod +x /usr/local/bin/dehydrated

Configuration should be restored from backup to the /etc/dehydrated or you may create new configuration.

Create new configuration

Make directory for configuration and certificates:

mkdir /etc/dehydrated

Create new configuration file /etc/dehydrated/config:

CONTACT_EMAIL="[email protected]"

You can use next certificate authorities:

  • letsencrypt
  • zerossl
  • buypass

Create domains list file /etc/dehydrated/domains.txt:

Register your account (only for new configuration!):

dehydrated --register --accept-terms

Launch HTTP server

Web server should work on port 80 and serve directory /opt/www. You can use any other directory, but don't forget to change port in dehydrated config.

If you don't have web-server you may launch temporary web server:

mkdir -p /opt/www/.well-known/acme-challenge
python3 -m http.server -d /opt/www 80

Create Certificate

To create a certificate, launch the following command:

dehydrated -c

Autoupdate Certificate

To update the certificate automatically, create a script for the daily cron job /etc/cron.daily/ In this script, write:


dehydrated -c

Then set execute permission:

chmod +x /etc/cron.daily/

The certificate will be automatically updated when there are 30 days left until expiration.

Use certificate

  • Certificate path: /etc/dehydrated/certs/
  • Private key path: /etc/dehydrated/certs/

For example nginx configuration in /etc/nginx/conf.d/01-ssl.conf:

server {
    listen       443 ssl default_server;
    listen       [::]:443 ssl default_server;
    server_name  _;
    root         /opt/www;

    ssl_certificate /etc/dehydrated/certs/;
    ssl_certificate_key /etc/dehydrated/certs/;

    ssl_session_cache shared:SSL:1m;
    ssl_session_timeout 1440m;

    ssl_protocols TLSv1.3 TLSv1.2;
    ssl_ciphers EECDH+AESGCM:EECDH+AES256;
    ssl_prefer_server_ciphers on;

    location / {
        return 200 'ok';