Just added Cloudflare SSL, still my site won't load

I have a site that I’ve been working on for a few weeks now. It’s a Dreamhost registered domain, but no hosting, just DNS. I built the site content with Google Sites. I set up everything according to the Dreamhost and Google KB, but still had to contact their support teams back and forth. They both keep saying everything looks good on their ends but the site still doesn’t load for everybody I tried. The only computers it loaded on was because I had accessed it before and it was cached. So Dreamhost told me I need an SSL certificate which they can’t provide because I don’t host with them anymore. I signed up for a free Cloudflare one this morning, but my site still doesn’t load. I updated my name servers at Dreamhost with the Custom Cloudflare ones. How long does it take for the SSL to take effect? What else could be going on? I just want my site to work finally. Thanks.

Cloudflare cannot secure a site which is not already secure. You do need a valid certificate on your server and need to talk to your host about that.

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I don’t understand. I thought that was the whole point of signing up with Cloudflare for a free SSL certificate. Would something like ZeroSSL work?

No, afraid that’s not the point of Cloudflare. Cloudflare does provide certificates, but they are not any better than what you mentioned or Let’s Encrypt and actually come with certain limitations.

If you get a Let’s Encrypt certificate, that should work just fine.

I hope you both don’t mind me jumping in.

@justin.york Can you provide your domain name so we can take a look?

I have a suspicion this might not have anything to do with SSL (at least not directly), as Google should handle this at their end for Google Sites users automatically if the domain is properly configured.


Thank you. The domain is prep hyphen maine dot org.

Google has told me twice that they don’t/can’t provide SSL so I have to go through Dreamhost or Digicert.

Can you pause Cloudflare?

And if Google is your host, it is them who have to get the certificate.

From what I can tell, you will still have the IP address of your previous host configured.

I suggest to pause Cloudflare, clarify with your new host the DNS entries and verify that everything is correctly configured, and verify that the site loads on HTTPS. If it does not, you need to contact your host again.

Once the site loads fine on HTTPS, it will also work on Cloudflare.

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Sorry for the delay, I have now paused Cloudflare.

That’s the thing, I have no current host. I only pay for the domain through Dreamhost, I stopped paying for their hosting since I thought I would no longer need it. I just use them as “DNS Only”.

Right, as mentioned you did not properly update the DNS entries.

I would keep it paused and talk to your host to get that working on HTTPS and verify the DNS entries are correct.

“www” actually works and does have a certificate. You could also use Deprecated - Redirect example.com to www.example.com to redirect the naked domain.

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And you do have a host, as otherwise you wouldn’t have any content. Your host simply is Google and they need to make sure the site is properly configured, hence you need to talk to them.

However, as mentioned “www” has a certificate anyhow. I am afraid this really is not a Cloudflare issue. “www” will work and for the naked domain, you can follow the previously mentioned advice.

Thanks. I send your advice to Google Support on my ticket. Here’s part of what they sent back:

"Cloudflare flagged an issue with your DNS settings when processing your SSL certificate request. Though I verified your CNAME and A records (critical for website access) are up-to-date, something else seems amiss.

I request you to reach out to Cloudflare again and ask them to pinpoint the exact DNS settings causing the problem. Share those details with them so they can adjust accordingly.

You can share this link with them and this will be the proof the from our Workspace end the A and CNAME records are updated.

: https://toolbox.googleapps.com/apps/dig/#A/www.prep-maine.org

: https://toolbox.googleapps.com/apps/dig/#CNAME/prep-maine.org

On our end at Google, everything you’ve changed is reflected and working correctly."

I don’t understand how a simple, basic website can be such a headache to set up.

The issue at the moment @justin.york is that the site is deleted from your account. You’d need to add it back +Add a site and then check the dns records.

Yes, I removed it a few hours ago because I didn’t think this was going to pan out. Question, what do you see when you click those links that Google provided? For me, they both say “Record not found!”. This is absolutely crazy.

I have re-added my domain to Cloudflare. Thanks for your help.

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Perfect. Next step is to contact your domain registrar (dreamhost) and ask them to remove these nameservers. (You may have already done that??)


and replace them with the two shown on https://dash.cloudflare.com/?to=/:account/:zone/dns

Name Server: dilbert.ns.cloudflare.com
Name Server: luciane.ns.cloudflare.com

Actually yes, I already added those two new unique nameservers before my last reply. Do they still not show? Thanks.