How to apply Digital Ocean Let's Encrypt certificate?

Hi! I had my website setup with a Let’s Encrypt certification using the certbot command. I guess I messed up the autorenew, because it expired recently. When I went to go renew it, I found that under Account -> Security there was a section to press a button and create an auto-renewing certificate, no Linux required. I created a certificate, but Firefox still says the certificate is expired when I try to access the website.

I have my domain from Google Domains (I guess Squarespace now?) pointing to the DigitalOcean nameservers, and then my DNS is set up on DigitalOcean. I thought that the certificate I created would be applied automatically since I use DigitalOcean DNS, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. How do I get that certification to go into effect? Do I have to configure something within nginx?

Submit an answer

This textbox defaults to using Markdown to format your answer.

You can type !ref in this text area to quickly search our full set of tutorials, documentation & marketplace offerings and insert the link!

Sign In or Sign Up to Answer

These answers are provided by our Community. If you find them useful, show some love by clicking the heart. If you run into issues leave a comment, or add your own answer to help others.

Site Moderator
Site Moderator badge
November 22, 2023
Accepted Answer

Heya @16650610e4b04364a53b38ec08bfe9,

If you are using a Droplet, the certificate can’t be added automatically.

If you are indeed using a Droplet, I’ll recommend you to SSH to your Droplet and run the command

sudo certbot renew

If you have multiple certificates for different domains and you want to renew a specific certificate, use:

certbot certonly --force-renew -d


The --force-renew flag tells Certbot to request a new certificate with the same domains as an existing certificate. The -d flag allows you renew certificates for multiple specific domains.

To verify that the certificate renewed, run:

sudo certbot renew --dry-run


If the command returns no errors, the renewal was successful.

Site Moderator
Site Moderator badge
November 30, 2023


On a droplet you need to handle the installation manually.

You can check our docs on how to install an SSL Certificate here:


Try DigitalOcean for free

Click below to sign up and get $200 of credit to try our products over 60 days!

Sign up

Featured on Community

Get our biweekly newsletter

Sign up for Infrastructure as a Newsletter.

Hollie's Hub for Good

Working on improving health and education, reducing inequality, and spurring economic growth? We'd like to help.

Become a contributor

Get paid to write technical tutorials and select a tech-focused charity to receive a matching donation.

Welcome to the developer cloud

DigitalOcean makes it simple to launch in the cloud and scale up as you grow — whether you're running one virtual machine or ten thousand.

Learn more
DigitalOcean Cloud Control Panel