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This question already has an answer here:

Stack Exchange will do a permanent redirect from www to non www for all Stack Exchange sites. This works fine without SSL but, with SSL the browser will throw an Insecure Connection error due to the certificate doesn't cover the specified domain.

I guess the issue is that the certificate for *.stackexchange.com doesn't cover www.*.stackexchange.com.

marked as duplicate by animuson bug Sep 18 '17 at 14:43

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Just ignore it for once and ever.

SSL certificate does not support wildcards in the middle of a domain, so it's essentially impossible to sign for www.*.stackexchange.com.

It's the same reason why the domain names for all per-site-metas were changed from meta.*.stackexchange.com to *.meta.stackexchange.com.


How do you navigate to www.*.stackexchange.com? I recommend you to change your bookmarks for once and ever.

  • I think the problem could be solved by SNI which is well supported by the IIS, and even by the internet explorers over WinXP. Maybe it would require for the SE to buy a lot more certs, which could be costly, but compared to the budget of the SE, they probably aren't. I admit, it is much easier to talk about buying something as actually buying it from our own :-) – peterh Sep 18 '17 at 12:56
  • @peterh I'm not a networking expert, but AFAIK SNI would not help at all. SNI allows the server to know which domain the client is connecting to, so it can e.g. distinguish stackoverflow.com from superuser.com (or www.stackoverflow.com). It does not allow the server to identify itself as another domain, or anything like that. As for buying extra certs, SE moved hundreds of Meta sites just to avoid that. They're certainly not going to buy the ~200 certificates that this would likely require just for domains they don't even support. – NobodyNada Sep 19 '17 at 4:46

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