Talking, as I was earlier this week, about mimicking the customer's environment at my own end, something I often need to do is enable SSL on a given Domino server. This is surprisingly easy to do. Unless you try and do it using the help files that is!
For some projects I only ever need to work on a single database and - for this - I'll just develop it on one of my existing servers, as the target environment is fairly standard. Oftentimes though I'll need to mimic exactly the whole environment in which the database(s) I'm working on will end up being hosted.
To mimic the target setup I usually create a new Virtual Machine running Windows 2003 and whatever version of the Domino server they intend to use. As mentioned the other day I then set the host name as servername.companyname2.com and configure my own DNS accordingly.
Increasingly (paranoia?) I'm developing for systems that will use SSL for all traffic. It's not essential that I do the same in the development environment, but it's always best to mimic every little detail and so it's better to if you can. Especially if the developed database has the "Requires SSL" property turned on, as you'd have to remember to toggle this each time a new template version was delivered or risk turning off the customers SSL.
In the past I've sometimes avoided this step on my side simply because it's as confusing as hell to try and setup SSL on a Domino server. That's if you try and follow the "step by step" guide offered in the Domino Administrator help files. Don't even go there! You'll end up screaming expletives at the monitor, as I did earlier in the week as I tried to enable SSL once more.
When I gave up getting anywhere with the help files I did a Google for something like "setting ssl on a domino server" and quickly found the help page that should have been. Funnily enough I found this page on IBM's site. Funnier still is the question posed:
What steps can you follow to set up SSL on a Lotus Domino server using Domino as the Certificate Authority? Is there a quick guide other than the detailed steps in the Lotus Domino Administrator help?
This was exactly what I was thinking. Although I wouldn't have posed the question as politely as that.
What follows is a simple, no nonsense guide to enabling SSL on a Domino server. It takes about two minutes to do and there's no need to pull out any hair.
Somewhere in the drafts folder of this site is a part-written article that I starting writing the last time I managed to achieve it the hard way. The idea was the same as the IBM page above, in that I wanted to offer the quick route that worked. Looks like I don't need to finish the article off now.
So, what I'm getting at in a long-winded way is that the linked page is definitely worth bookmarking. Not that a quick Google wouldn't have found you that anyway, but I wanted you to know there's help out there before you try and use the help database.