That’s another mouthful. I know. Here is the story behind this blog post: http://www.neptune.me/blog is my personal and private blog. I use it to capture ideas, post family pictures and document the progress of projects that I am working on. The blog runs on the latest version of Wordpress and is hosted by Dreamhost. To make this site reasonably secure I decided to use their SSL/https feature with a self-signed certificate. The feature requires me to lease a unique IP address which costs about $3 per month. If you have a Dreamhost hosting account you can go to Web Hosting \ Domains \ Secure Hosting and set it up with a free self-signed key.
The self-signed key is as secure as a professionally generated key for keeping your personal blog private. The only downside is that browsers will give you a warning when you navigate to a site that is protected by a self-signed key. Fortunately you can work around this problem by accepting the warning message and the browser will work with this exception. But Windows Live Writer doesn’t let you connect at all. This blog post describes how to setup your PC to make Windows Live Writer work with a self-signed key.
Export the Server Certificate on the Client
The first step is to navigate to the blog URL with FireFox and download the Dreamhost self-signed certificate to your local drive.
Figure 1: Click on the Certificate link in the Firefox Browser URL .Then click the More Information… button.
Figure 2: Go to the Security tab and click the View Certificate button
Figure 3: Click on the Details pane and the Export.. button
Figure 4: Export and save your Certificate to your local drive
Add Certificate to the Trusted Cert Store
Now in Windows start certmgr.msc. Navigate the Certificate tree view on the left to Trusted Root Certificate Authorities and then Certificates. Select the Import right mouse click menu item to start the import Action.
Figure 5: Import the Certificate into the Trusted Root Certification store
Setup Windows Live Writer using HTTPS
Open Windows Live Writer. Select the “Add a blog account” menu item under the Blog Account main menu.
Figure 6: Enter the https URL of your blog and valid WordPress credentials
Figure 7: Select WordPress 2.2+ as blog type
Figure 8: Verify the blog account settings after a successful initial synchronization
Create a blog post in WLW and publish it to your HTTPS Wordpress blog
Figure 9: Publish to WordPress blog using Windows Live Writer over HTTPS using a self-signed certificate from Dreamhost