Manual Chapter : Features and Terminology in F5 Guided Configuration for SSL Orchestrator

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F5 SSL Orchestrator

  • 16.0.0
Manual Chapter

Features and Terminology in F5 Guided Configuration for SSL Orchestrator

Features and Terminology in F5 Guided Configuration for SSL Orchestrator

This section defines and describes some of the features and terminology used in SSL Orchestrator. Additionally, it details the available topologies (steps) available in SSL Orchestrator's Guided Configuration.

Features and Terminology

  • Certificate Authority (CA) certificate
    This implementation requires a Certificate Authority PKI (public key infrastructure) certificate and matching private key for SSL Forward Proxy. Your TLS clients must trust this CA certificate to sign server certificates.
  • Inspection zone
    An inspection zone refers to the network region between separate ingress and egress BIG-IP® devices where cleartext data is available for inspection. Basically, an extra inline service can be placed at the end of every service chain for additional inspection. You cannot configure a decrypt zone in the scenario where a single BIG-IP system handles both ingress and egress traffic because the inspection zone does not exist.
  • F5 Guided Configuration for SSL Orchestrator
    F5 Guided Configuration for SSL Orchestrator is meant to guide you through setting up a particular use case on the SSL Orchestrator system. Each template requests minimal input and provides contextual help to assist users during setup.
    The current version displays on the landing page. When a later upgrade becomes available, you can use the available link next to the version number to download it from devcentral.f5.com, then upload and install it Guided Configuration for SSL Orchestrator link.
    To go to the landing page, save any work you have done in the right pane before you click
    SSL Orchestrator
    Configuration
    , or click the
    Home
    icon in the menu steps.
    See the
    Setting up F5 Guided Configuration for SSL Orchestrator
    section for detailed steps on installing and upgrading to the newest version.
  • HTTP services
    You can configure inline HTTP explicit proxy (EP) or transparent proxy (TP) settings with SSL Orchestrator configured as either an explicit or transparent proxy for extended SSL visibility and existing or new deployments. Using SSL Orchestrator, the inline proxy device can be in either transparent or explicit mode, irrespective of SSL Orchestrator's mode.
  • ICAP services
    Each ICAP service uses the ICAP protocol (https://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc3507) to refer HTTP traffic to one or more Content Adaptation device(s) for inspection and possible modification. You can add an ICAP service to any TCP service chain, but only HTTP traffic is sent to it, as we do not support ICAP for other protocols. You can configure up to ten ICAP services using F5® SSL Orchestrator.
  • Layer 2 (L2) and Layer 3 (L3) inline services
    Inline services pass traffic through one or more service (inspection) devices at Layer2 (MAC)/Bump-in-the-wire or Layer3 (IP). Each service device communicates with the SSL Orchestrator device over two VLANs called
    Inward
    and
    Outward
    which carry traffic toward the intranet and the Internet respectively. You can configure up to ten inline services, each with multiple defined devices, using SSL Orchestrator.
  • Receive-only/TAP services
    Receive-only services refer to services that only receive traffic for inspection, and do not send it back to the BIG-IP system. Each receive-only service provides a packet-by-packet copy of the traffic (e.g. plaintext) passing through it to an inspection device. You can configure up to ten receive-only services using SSL Orchestrator.
  • Security policies
    The SSL Orchestrator uses a visual per-request policy engine, or Visual Policy Editor (VPE), to define traffic flows through the security services. Security policies are available within the VPE with each element, or box, representing a corresponding macro whose information (and output) influences the next element and its macro, until the traffic is either allowed or blocked.
  • Service chains
    SSL Orchestrator service chains process specific connections based on rules which look at protocol, source and destination addresses, and so on. These service chains can include five types of services (HTTP services, Layer 2 inline services, Layer 3 inline services, receive-only/TAP services, and ICAP services) you define, as well as any decrypt zone between separate ingress and egress devices.
  • SNAT
    A SNAT (Secure Network Address Translation) is a feature that defines routable alias IP addresses that the BIG-IP system substitutes for client IP source addresses when making connections to hosts on the external network. A SNAT pool is a pool of translation addresses that you can map to one or more original IP addresses. Translation addresses in a SNAT pool should not be self IP addresses.
  • Strict Update option (Protected/Unprotected Configurations)
    By selecting the strict update option (on the Guided Configuration Welcome screen in a column labelled
    Protected/Unprotected Configurations
    ) for deployed configurations, you cannot manually modify any settings produced by the application. Once you disable this option (click on the lock symbol), you can manually change your configuration. F5 recommends you keep this setting enabled (locked) to avoid misconfigurations that can result in an unusable application and limit F5's ability to support your product. The strict update check box is enabled/selected by default.
  • Sync-Failover device group
    A Sync-Failover device group (part of the Device Service Clustering (DSC®) functionality) contains BIG-IP devices that synchronize their configuration data and failover to one another when a device becomes unavailable. In this configuration, a Sync-Failover device group supports a maximum of two devices.
  • Transparent/Explicit proxy
    You can operate in transparent and/or explicit proxy mode. A transparent proxy intercepts normal communication without requiring any special client configuration; clients are unaware of the proxy in the network. In this implementation, the transparent proxy scheme can intercept all types of TLS and TCP traffic. It can also process UDP and forward other types of IP traffic. The explicit proxy scheme supports only HTTP(S) per RFC2616. In addition, transparent proxy supports direct routing for policy-based routing (PBR) and Web Cache Communication Protocol (WCCP) that are dependent on networking services to support both protocols, while explicit proxy supports manual browser settings for proxy auto-config (PAC) and Web Proxy Autodiscovery Protocol (WPAD) that require additional iRule configurations (not included) to provide the PAC/WPAD script content.

Topologies (Guided Configuration Steps)

F5 Guided Configuration for SSL Orchestrator helps guide you through setting up a particular use case configuration on the SSL Orchestrator system. Each topology, or step (template), requires minimal input and provides contextual help to assist users during setup.
F5 Guided Configuration for SSL Orchestrator topologies (steps):
  • Topology
  • SSL Configuration
  • Service
  • Service Chain
  • Security Policy
  • Interception Rule
  • Egress Setting
  • Log Settings
  • Summary
  • Preview Merge
In addition, SSL Orchestrator also includes:
  • System Settings
    : for general information the system requires.
  • High Availability Status (HA-Status)
    : for detailed information on the status of your HA devices with detailed warning and error messages indicating issues with your system status, HA network status, and device groups and options on how to fix.
  • SSL Orchestrator Dashboard
    : for various methods to review and analyze the status and trends of your SSL Orchestrator environment and systems. Each tile has customizable features based on reporting time ranges.
The current version displays on the SSL Orchestrator Configuration landing page. When a later upgrade becomes available, you can use the available link next to the version number to download it from devcentral.f5.com, then upload and install Guided Configuration for SSL Orchestrator.
See the
Setting up F5 Guided Configuration for SSL Orchestrator
section, or the
Setting up F5 Guided Configuration for SSL Orchestrator in High Availability
section, for detailed steps on installing and upgrading to the newest version.
  • Topology
    When using the Topology screen, you can set up SSL Orchestrator in an array of topologies that define the type of traffic (transparent or explicit) and the direction of traffic flow (inbound or outbound) you wish to inspect.
    These deployment settings, which can be modified as needed without un-deploying a configuration, are complimented by SSL settings that assist you in defining inbound and outbound decryption, setting your service types (such as HTTP, ICAP, Layer 2 (L2)/Layer 3 (L3) inline, and receive-only/TAP services), creating your service chains and security policies that can be managed through a visual policy editor.
    Available topologies are based on your initial network setup. Topologies that are not supported by your network setup or licensing will not show as an enabled option.
    • L2 Inbound
      and
      L2 Outbound
      topologies are only available for supported L2 wire enabled networks.
    • L3 Inbound
      and
      L3 Outbound
      topologies are available for all supported networks.
    • L3 Explicit Proxy
      topology is only available when Protocol is set to either TCP or Any.
    • Existing Application
      topology is available for SSL Orchestrator addon licensed devices. This option is not available for standalone SSL Orchestrator devices.
    SSL Orchestrator provides the installation of default or custom outbound interception rules for greater support in defining your listeners and the flexibility to create your own outbound and inbound interception rules.
  • SSL Configuration
    When configuring the SSL Configuration screen, you can set up or manage your forward proxy (for outbound traffic) or reverse proxy (for inbound traffic) scenarios by creating a new SSL profile or selecting to use an existing SSL profile you have previously created. You can setup and manage client and server cipher types (group or string), and select certificate, key, and chain configuration details required to process SSL traffic.
    For outbound scenarios, click
    Show Advanced Setting
    to see an option to enable or disable SSL forward proxy bypass on receiving a handshake failure, protocol version, or unsupported extension alert message during the server-side SSL handshake so that SSL traffic bypasses the BIG-IP system untouched, without decryption/encryption.
    You can enable or disable SSL forward proxy bypass when failing to get a client certificate that the server asks for so that SSL traffic bypasses the BIG-IP system untouched, without decryption/encryption.
    For outbound and inbound scenarios, you can also control whether SSL Orchestrator should ignore/drop untrusted/expired server certificates. Additionally, you can specify an OCSP responder or a CRL file to validate server certificates.
  • Service
    When configuring the Service screen, you can create services such as HTTP, ICAP, Layer 2 and Layer 3 inline, receive only TAP, and other services.
    • HTTP Services
      : You can configure inline HTTP explicit or transparent proxy settings with SSL Orchestrator configured as either an explicit or transparent proxy for extended SSL visibility and existing or new deployments. Using SSL Orchestrator, you can support multiple explicit and transparent proxy configurations such as: SSLO Explicit proxy with in-line explicit proxy as a service (EP-EP); SSLO Transparent proxy with in-line explicit proxy as a service (TP-EP); SSLO Explicit proxy with in-line transparent proxy as a service (EP-TP); SSLO Transparent proxy with in-line transparent proxy as a service (TP-TP).
    • ICAP
      : Each ICAP service uses the Internet Content Adaptation Protocol (ICAP) RFC3507 protocol to refer HTTP traffic to one or more Content Adaptation devices for inspection and possible modification. You can configure the ICAP services that are a part of this configuration.
    • Layer 2 and Layer 3 inline
      : Inline services pass traffic through one or more service devices at Layer 2 (LAN) or Layer 3 (IP). Each service device communicates with the BIG-IP device on the ingress side over two VLANs called Inward and Outward that carry traffic toward the intranet and the Internet, respectively.
    • Receive Only TAP
      : TAP services only receive traffic for inspection, and do not send it back to the BIG-IP system. Each receive-only service provides a packet-by-packet copy of the traffic (for example, plaintext), passing through it to an inspection device.
    To use a previously created service, select the check box next to the name of the desired service type and click
    Save & Next
    . You can edit any previously created service by clicking directly on the name.To create a new service, click
    Add Service
    .
    Only the services created as part of this workflow can be deleted.
  • Service Chain
    When configuring the Service Chain screen, you can process specific connections based on security policy rules which look at protocol, source, and destination addresses to define an ordered list of services. These service chains can include an ordered list of services you define, as well as any decrypt zone between separate ingress and egress devices. Select services that have already been created from the available list, filter as necessary, and add them to the
    Selected Service Chain Order
    list.
    This service chain list can also be reordered by using the direction arrow buttons.
    To use a previously created service chain, select the check box next to the name of the desired service chain type and click
    Save & Next
    . You can edit any previously created service chain by clicking directly on the name. To create a new service chain, click
    Add
    .
    Only the service chains created as part of this workflow can be deleted.
  • Security Policy
    When configuring the Security Policy screen, you can provide security policy configuration details, including policy conditions, rules, and custom policy details, for your SSL Orchestrator deployment. By default, SSL Orchestrator provides
    Pinners_Rule
    and
    All Traffic
    rules.
    Pinners_Rule
    consists of domain names of some TLS- (SSL-) based services from well-known businesses that support software which may not work well when their connections are intercepted and decrypted by the SSL Orchestrator solution. You can also use the
    All Traffic
    default rule that allows the interception of all traffic.
    Click
    Add
    to create a new security policy rule. You can specify conditions, match type (match any/match all), and choose the action (reject/allow) for the specified traffic. You can also select a service chain and specify if SSL forward proxy traffic will be intercepted or bypassed.
    You can select
    Server Certificates Status Check
    if you want to add a new per-request policy agent for server certificate status and to allow administrators to select ignore/mask options and generate a blocking page for untrusted and expired server certificates. In addition, you can select
    Proxy Connect
    if you want to add an upstream explicit proxy to your security rule chaining. You can add multiple proxy devices, or pool members, as necessary.
    When selecting a new rule Condition, we recommend you follow these tips:
    • When you select
      Category Lookup (HTTP Connect)
      condition, also add the
      L7 Protocol Lookup (TCP)
      condition.
    • When you select
      L7 Protocol Lookup (UDP)
      condition, do not add the
      Category Lookup (SNI)
      ,
      Category Lookup (HTTP Connect)
      ,
      SSL Check
      , or
      URL Match
      conditions.
    A URLF license is not required to use
    Custom Categories
    when creating a new URL category.
    When you use SSL Orchestrator to provision and deploy an L3 Outbound or L3 Explicit Proxy configuration, and then use BIG-IP Access to configure a custom category, the custom category is supported for the hostname only (with no URLDB or SWG). Therefore, the URL should be configured with the hostname only (for example, http://www.f5.com/). In case of a full URL configuration (http://www.f5.com/services/), the category lookup will result in an uncategorised category (id# 153).
  • Interception Rule
    When configuring the Interception Rule screen, you can set up both outbound and inbound scenarios.
    • Outbound Topology Scenarios
      : Using the SSL Orchestrator default outbound interception rules settings is recommended by F5 and allows you to:
      • Define your outbound proxy scheme settings to support either
        Transparent
        or
        Explicit
        proxy modes.
      • Simplify your security settings by creating both SSL and Per-Request Policy settings with pre-defined configurations for your outbound rule.
      • Simplify your ingress network VLAN settings with pre-defined configuration for your outbound rule.
    • Inbound Topology Scenarios
      : You can use the inbound interception rules to create inbound (reverse proxy) listeners. For example, you can setup a gateway where SSL Orchestrator sits in front of your applications (or a separate ADC to do inspections) where a wildcard or SAN certificate is used to decrypt traffic.
    Your inbound interception rules can also be optionally (through advanced properties) configured to service individual applications.
  • Egress Setting
    The BIG-IP receives traffic after a connection travels through the specified service chain and directs the traffic to the final destination. When configuring the Egress Setting screen, you can select whether or not you want the system to let all SSL traffic use the default route, or if you want to specify Internet gateways (routers). If you want to override the default routing and choose to use specific gateways, you can define the ratios within the pool of routers to load balance the traffic.
    The Egress Setting step is only for L3 topology configurations.
    To create egress settings, you must set both SNAT (Secure Network Address Translation) settings and your selected gateway routes for SSL intercept traffic. When managing SNAT settings, you define routable alias IP addresses that the BIG-IP system substitutes for client IP source addresses when making connections to hosts on the external network. You can use an existing SNAT (and thus define a SNAT pool), the SNAT Auto Map functionality, or create new SNAT settings or none at all. Create a BIG-IP SNAT pool to define a pool of distinct host addresses for SNAT to use. A SNAT pool is a pool of translation addresses that you can map to one or more original IP addresses. Translation addresses in a SNAT pool should not be self IP addresses.
    For gateway addresses, enter multiple gateways if you have multiple systems and wish to load balance across them. If you do enter multiple addresses, you can also use the ratio value to control the load balancing. For example, if you have two devices, and one handles twice as much traffic as the other, you can set the ratio to 1 on the smaller device, and 2 on the larger one. Create a BIG-IP gateway pool if you add more than one gateway (routers) that specifies the routes of all SSL intercept traffic.
  • Log Settings
    When using the Log Settings screen, you can enable logging for selected facilities at various levels of severity to describe the system messages. Facilities describe the specific element of the system generating the message: Per-Request Policy, FTP, IMAP, POP3, SMTPS, SSL Orchestrator Generic.
    The following levels describe the severity of the message and are listed in order of the severity of the messages they handle:
    • Emergency
      : Specifies the emergency system panic messages.
    • Alert
      : Serious errors that require administrator intervention.
    • Critical
      : Critical errors, including hardware and file system failures.
    • Error
      : Non-critical, but possibly very important, error messages.
    • Warning
      : Warning messages that should at least be logged for review.
    • Notice
      : Messages that contain useful information, but may be ignored.
    • Information
      : Messages that contain useful information, but may be ignored.
    • Debug
      : Messages that are only necessary for troubleshooting.
    Generally, higher levels contain all the messages for lower levels. For example, the
    Alert
    level will generally also report all messages from the
    Emergency
    level, and the
    Debug
    level will generally also report all messages for all levels.
  • Summary
    After completing your configuration, or when updating, you can use the Summary screen to review and change configuration settings as necessary for each topology. Select the arrow to review the topology details or select the pencil to edit most field content and re-save.
  • Preview Merge
    The
    Preview Merge
    option becomes available for previously deployed SSL Orchestrator configurations after a configuration is moved into the
    Unprotected Configuration
    mode. Once a configuration is unlocked, changes made in any of the following configuration topologies (steps) are available for review and merge configuration options:
    • Topology
    • SSL Configuration
    • Service
    • Interception Rule
    • System Settings
    See the
    Using F5 SSL Orchestrator Preview Merge
    section in this guide for more detailed information.

System Settings

In addition to the SSL Orchestrator topologies, after clicking
Add
from the Configuration screen, you can select
System Settings
at the top right of the screen. From the System Settings screen, you can provide general information the system needs, such as
IP Family
settings to specify whether you want this configuration to support IPv4 addresses, IPv6 addresses, or both.
You can specify the
DNS Query resolution
. This solution uses DNS extensively. You can either permit the system to send DNS queries directly out to the Internet, or specify one or more local forwarding nameservers to process all DNS queries from SSL Intercept. Direct resolution can be more reliable than using forwarders but requires outbound UDP+TCP port 53 access to the Internet.
You can select
DNSSec Validation
to specify whether you want to use DNSSec to validate the DNS information. Using DNSSec to validate DNS information improves security.
You can also specify in
Gateways Configuration
whether you want the system to let all SSL intercept traffic use the default route, or specify Internet gateways (routers) depending on the IP family selection:
  • IPv4 and/or IPv6 Outbound Gateways: You may specify one or more Internet gateways (routers) to handle outbound SSL intercept traffic (plus control the share of traffic each is given).
  • Non-public IPv6 Networks: You may specify route connections to any non-public IPv6 networks via the IPv6 gateways by entering the prefix/mask-length (CIDR). Non-public IPv6 networks are those outside the 2000::/3 block, such as ULA networks in the fc00::/7 block. Your organization and your VPN-linked business partners likely have some non-public IPv6 networks.

High Availability Status (HA-Status)

SSL Orchestrator’s High Availability status (HA-Status) screen provides detailed information on the status of your HA devices with detailed warning and error messages indicating issues with your system status, HA network status, and device groups and options on how to fix. From the SSL Orchestrator home screen, you may select the HA-Status icon at the top right to open the High Availability screen.
  • System Status
    : Review the status for each System Status item. If there are no errors, the status displays a Good result. If there is a System Status error, the status displays a Bad result. Review the error message and select Fix Issue Manually to address the configuration errors.
  • HA Network Status
    : Review the HA Status. If there are no errors, the status displays a Good result. If there is an error, the status displays a Bad result. Review the configuration error message to address the issue.
  • Device Groups
    : Review the status for all Device Groups listed based on Management IP, Config Sync IP, Failover State, Self Device, and Version information.
The HA-Status screen and details may be utilized during your HA installation and upgrade to check the health of your HA devices.

SSL Orchestrator Dashboard

The SSL Orchestrator
Dashboard
provides you with various methods to review and analyze the status and trends of your SSL Orchestrator environment and systems. Each tile has customizable features based on reporting time ranges.
  • Overall Status
    : When you first click the
    Dashboard
    tab, each dashboard tile renders data for 1 day by default if Application Visibility and Reporting (AVR) is provisioned. Using the
    Overall Status
    tile, you can view your SSL Orchestration overall
    Services
    and
    Topologies
    configuration status. You can refresh displayed dashboard tiles and change the reporting time range from the top right of the menu panel (
    Change Time Range
    ). The available reporting time ranges are
    Last hour
    ,
    Last 4 hours
    ,
    Last day
    ,
    Last week
    ,
    Last month
    ,
    Last year
    ,
    Year to date
    , or
    All
    . The default is
    Last day
    . You can also click the
    Refresh
    icon (double arrows) to automatically refresh the available tiles.
    If you have not provisioned the AVR module, you will only be able to view CPU Usage and Memory Usage overall statistics tiles. When a provisioned AVR is not detected, a message appears with a link to provision the AVR.
  • CPU Usage
    : From the tile header icon you can select to view either the
    Control Plane
    ,
    Data Plane
    , or
    Analysis Plane
    details in a dial graph showing high (red), medium (yellow), low (green) CPU usage and respective percentage. Just click the tile header icon to select your specific view.
  • Memory Usage
    : From the tile header icon you can select to view either the percentage of memory for
    TMM
    ,
    Other
    , or
    Total
    used. Just click the tile header icon to select your specific view.
  • SSL Decryption Status
    : You can view your SSL Orchestration SSL decryption configuration status for the amount of SSL traffic is
    Decrypted
    ,
    Not Decrypted
    , and is in
    Plain Text
    in a single graph. Use your mouse to hover over the graph for specific status information. Click on the interactive legend to customize the dashboard chart details.
  • Top 10 URL Categories
    : From the tile header icon you can select to view either the
    Allowed
    ,
    Blocked
    , or
    Combined
    top 10 URL and other miscellaneous categories in a bar graph display (the combined setting shows both allowed and blocked details). Click the tile header icon to select your specific view. By default, the URL Category tile displays a combined stacked chart. The
    Allow
    option includes bypass. You can also use your mouse to hover over the bar charts to display the specific URL category, if it is allowed (green) or blocked (red), and its URL category and value. Click on the interactive legend to customize the dashboard chart details.
  • Cipher Version/Name
    : You can view your SSL Orchestrator configurations
    Client Cipher Version
    ,
    Name
    ,
    Value
    , and
    Percent
    and your
    Server Cipher Version
    ,
    Name
    ,
    Value
    , and
    Percent
    in two clickable pie charts that provide respective hit count analytics based on the cipher version segment (each segment is color coded with an available legend that associates the colors with the cipher details). Click on the interactive legend to customize the dashboard chart details.
  • Throughput Averages
    : You can select either
    Client In-Client Out/Server In-Server Out
    or
    Client In-Server Out/Server In-Client Out
    line chart from Display Options to view the average throughput statistics for your SSL Orchestrator configuration. Just click the tile header icon to select your specific view. You can also use your mouse to hover over the line charts to display client-bytes-out and client-bytes-in details and dates and to display server-bytes-out and server-bytes-in details and dates. Click on the interactive legend to customize the dashboard chart details.