Help with digital certificate for Clickonce technology

Posted on 2016-08-09
Last Modified: 2016-08-13

How do you obtain a digital certificate at no cost?


Question by:vcharles
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LVL 84
ID: 41750161
You could create a self-certificate, but that doesn't really do you much good if you are distributing this in the wild.

There are some free options out there, but I'm not sure how well they work, and most seem to be geared towards open-source projects.

If you truly need a code signing certificate then it's prudent to purchase one. There are many resellers out there who will provide one for approximately $100 USD/year. Note those are typically resold Comodo certs, but they work.

I got mine from Digicert, after using this link for a deep discount:

Go to the section titled "Step 2: Buy a new code signing certificate", and select the "Buy a DigiCert standard code signing certificate" in either the Standard or Extended sections. This will take you to the a page offering a 50% discount for the certificate on the Digicert site.

Author Comment

ID: 41752302

I looked at the link but don't see how is it included with Visual Studio to use with Clickonce technology , do you know another link that shows how to use a digital certificate with clickonce technology?


LVL 84

Accepted Solution

Scott McDaniel (Microsoft Access MVP - EE MVE ) earned 500 total points
ID: 41752456
That link is just to purchase a certificate, which is what you asked. As mentioned earlier, there may be some free certificates out there, but ClickOnce deployment only works with particular types of certificates, and odds are the ones you could get for free would not do the job. After all, the reason you use a code signing certificate is so that your users can be relatively certain the code is from a reliable source. Using a free certificate, which requires little to no verification, doesn't really do that.

To sign your Clickonce deployments, open the My Project page, then select the Signing item on the left side listing. Select you .pfx file using the "Select From File", and then continue to create your ClickOnce deployment. VS will use the Certificate you selected in the Signing section when creating your installer.

Author Comment

ID: 41753028
Ok. I think I got it. I need to make sure the cerificaye purchased can be used with clickonce technology and use the steps in your last paragraph to use the certificate. Will reseaech certificates which can be used with clickonce.

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