About SignNow

SignNow is a secure eSignature solution allowing organizations to obtain legally binding signatures from customers, partners, and employees in seconds, reducing document turnaround up to 90%. SignNow offers a range of deployment options:

  • Cloud
  • Virtual machine (VM) appliance

This paperless approach to document control allows you to electronically manage document workflow and securely store critical documents, eliminating scanners, faxes, printers, and document storage.


Quick Start

Use the steps in this article to set up your SignNow Server.


This guide assumes you have installed your hardware or virtual machine:

Step 1. SignNow Admin Panel

  1. From a web browser, enter the address to access the SignNow Admin panel where hostname.domain represents the values configured in the web interface as described in the previous section:
  2. In the login screen, enter the username admin and the password signNowadmin!
    Make sure to change this password later.
  3. Click Log In.

Step 2. SSL Certificate Settings

There are two options when setting up your SSL Certificate:

  • Create Self Signed Certificate – Create a self-signed certificate. To use this option, click Create Self Signed Certificate to reboot the web server. A warning displays notifying you that your certificate is self-signed. If prompted, acknowledge that you want to proceed or add an exception.
  • Upload Verified SSL Certificate – Upload verified certificates. To use this option, upload the file for each of the required fields, and click Upload Verified Certs. The web server reboots and the SSL Certificate Settings page displays again.


SignNow Server only supports using Apache/PEM SSL certificates and keys; DER, PKCS#7/P7b, and PKCS#12/Pfx formats are not currently supported. Convert these formats to Apache/PEM formats using the openssl command line tool before uploading.


To use verified certificates you must obtain one from an SSL certificate provider. SSL certificate providers require a certificate request file. Currently the SignNow Appliance cannot generate a certificate request file, but the request file and a private key can be generated on another system using the steps as described in the Rackspace solution Generate a CSR with OpenSSL. Once you receive the certificates from the SSL certificate provider you will have the 3 files you need:

  1. The public certificate file (from your SSL certificate provider)
  2. The private certificate key (from the openssl command that created the certificate request file)
  3. The intermediate bundle file (from your SSL certificate provider)


If you do not have a PEM-formatted certificate, you can convert other certificates to PEM. For more information, refer to SSL Converter.
For information on extracting a key from IIS, see Exporting a SSL certificate from an IIS Windows server.

Step 3. SMTP Configuration (Required for SignNow Notifications)

In order for SignNow notification emails to work properly you must configure the SMTP settings.

To do so,

  1. Click SMTP Configuration in the top menu.
  2. Enter the SMTP Relay Hostname and SMTP Relay Port.
  3. Click Send Test Email to test your settings.

Step 4. (Highly Recommended) Configure LDAP or User Registration


For LDAP configuration details, refer to the article LDAP Integration.

To use LDAP, click LDAP Configuration in the top menu, and turn on Use LDAP to reveal the settings fields. Click Submit to save your settings.


If you are using Active Directory (AD) you will have a different Base DN. To determine your Base DN:

  1. Log in to your AD system.
  2. Navigate to the user to whom you wish to give SignNow access.
  3. Look up the Distinguished Name for the user.
  4. The Base DN is the part of the user's Distinguished Name (usually the OU and DC parts).
  • For example, if your users distinguished name is: CN=Test User,OU=Non Admin Users,OU=Users,DC=corp,DC=yourdomain,DC=com
    then the Base DN will be: OU=Non Admin Users,OU=Users,DC=corp,DC=yourdomain,DC=com

To whitelist domains, click Registration & Login Settings in the top menu. User Registration Domains Whitelists can be found at the bottom of the page. Enter the Description and Domain you want to whitelist, and then click Whitelist Domain.

Step 5. Clear Disable User Registration

By default users cannot sign up for new SignNow accounts until the Disable User Registration check box is cleared. This check box can be found in the Registration & Login Settings in the top menu. Simply clear the box, and then click Submit.


It is highly recommended that LDAP or User Registration Whitelists are in place before clearing this box. (See Step 4). If you plan to use LDAP to restrict registration, clearing this box is unnecessary as new accounts are created automatically when users log in.

Step 6. (Highly Recommended) Configure Backups

To configure backup settings,

  1. Click Schedule Backup in the top menu.
  2. Enter the details in the Remote File Server Settings section, where you can select between FTP and SSH/SCL.
  3. In the Backup Schedule section, choose between weekly and daily.


Click on Time Settings in the top menu and ensure that everything is set up correctly there.

Step 7. (Highly Recommended) Create An Organization

To create an organization,

  1. Click Private Labels in the top menu, and then enter a name to identify the organization in the field under Add Organization.
  2. When you click Add Organization, the Domains section displays. Enter the organization's domain, and click Add Domain.
  3. (Optional) In the Auto Export Servers section, set the auto export parameters, and then click Add Auto Export Server.
  4. (Optional) In Logos, upload an image to replace the SignNow logo in emails and the web application.


This works similarly to the backups, except it automatically (and immediately) sends your users' documents to the specified export location. If ALL else fails, you will at least have these backed up documents.

Step 8. Log in to SignNow

In order to log in to the SignNow application, enter the host you previously set up, (https://*hostname.domain* without "/admin"). You are presented with the login screen.

If your account is set up, enter your login credentials, and then click Log In. If your account has not yet been created, click Sign Up, and follow the onscreen instructions


Sign Up is disabled by default. See Step 5. Clear Disable User Registration to enable Sign Up.

Updated about a year ago

Quick Start

Suggested Edits are limited on API Reference Pages

You can only suggest edits to Markdown body content, but not to the API spec.