Fastvue TMG Reporter 3.0 Beta Now Available

Fastvue TMG Reporter Advanced Reporting Solution for Microsoft Forefront TMG 2010I’m a huge fan of the Fastvue TMG Reporter advanced reporting solution. If you’ve spent any time at all with the native Forefront TMG 2010 reporting tools, you know they are, as my British friends say, “rubbish”. While it is possible to configure Forefront TMG 2010 to log to an external SQL server and create your own reports, a better alternative is to use Fastvue TMG Reporter. They’ve already done all the hard work for you! Also, TMG Reporter from Fastvue works with TMG when configured to use an external SQL server, so you get the best of both worlds!

Recently the fine folks at Fastvue announced a sneak peak at their latest update to TMG Reporter in v3.0 Beta. This latest release includes a bunch of great new features, including the following:

  • Site Clean – This provides a way to clean up a lot of noise from your activity reports by consolidating related requests (e.g. analytics and CDN requests).
  • Private Report Sharing – Create a report for an individual or group and prevent them from accessing any other report data.
  • AD Security Group Filtering – A must have for searching activity reports!
  • Export to CSV for Reports and Report Tables – Great feature for detailed, granular data analysis offline.
  • Filter by Firewall Server Name or IP Address – This is essential for enterprise customers managing multiple TMG firewalls across the organization.

The latest release also includes Gantt Bars for Activity Reports, changes to the Productivity Dashboard, inclusion of search terms in User Overview reports, an updated Alerts interface, and improved data visibility. In addition, v3.0 includes memory usage improvements and the usual bug fixes and miscellaneous minor improvements.

Be sure to download Fastvue TMG Report v3.0 Beta today!

Licensing Forefront TMG 2010 after Microsoft End of Sale

Recently I’ve seen a lot of chatter on the Internet about downloading key generators and crack codes for Forefront Threat Management Gateway (TMG) 2010. Yes, it is true that since Microsoft announced the end of life/end of sale for Forefront TMG 2010 they are no longer selling processor licenses for it. However, downloading a keygen or obtaining software licenses some other way is not only illegal, but dangerous.

A better (and legal!) alternative is to purchase Forefront TMG 2010 from a reputable Microsoft OEM partner. Microsoft OEM partners are still selling Forefront TMG even today. And coincidentally, I just happen to work for one! That’s right, Celestix Networks is still selling their MSA hardware appliance solution with Forefront TMG 2010. So, if you still wish to deploy a new instances of TMG 2010 and don’t currently have the necessary licensing, Celestix Networks can help you out.

Celestix MSA featuring Forefront TMG 2010

Publish DirectAccess with Forefront TMG 2010

January 26, 2015 Leave a comment

DirectAccess is a compelling remote access solution that provides seamless and transparent, always-on, bi-directional remote corporate network connectivity for managed Windows clients. In Windows Server 2008 R2 and Forefront Unified Access Gateway (UAG) 2010, the DirectAccess server had to be configured with two network adapters, with the external network interface configured with two consecutive public IPv4 addresses. Many security engineers were understandably concerned about exposing a domain-joined Windows server directly to the public Internet, which limited the adoption of the technology. Beginning with Windows Server 2012, DirectAccess is integrated in to the operating system and provides more flexible network configuration. DirectAccess can now be deployed behind an existing edge security solution performing NAT, and even supports single-NIC configuration.

The Forefront TMG 2010 firewall is an excellent choice to provide essential protection for the DirectAccess workload. When DirectAccess is deployed behind a NAT device, the only firewall port that needs to be opened is TCP port 443 (HTTPS).

When publishing DirectAccess with TMG, it is important to use a server publishing rule and not a web publishing rule. To publish DirectAccess, open the Forefront TMG 2010 management console, right-click Firewall Policy in the navigation tree, and then choose New Non-Web Server Publishing Rule.

Publish DirectAccess with Forefront TMG 2010

Provide a descriptive name for the rule, enter the IP address of the DirectAccess server, choose HTTPS Server for the protocol, and then select the network interface on which to listen for these requests.

Publish DirectAccess with Forefront TMG 2010

To ensure the proper operation of Receive Side Scaling (RSS) on the DirectAccess server, it is recommended that the server be configured to use TMG as its default gateway and to configure the publishing rule on TMG using the option Requests appear to come from the original client.

Publish DirectAccess with Forefront TMG 2010

Also, TMG does not support load balancing for server publishing rules, so it is not possible to deliver traffic to multiple back end servers using TMG. For high availability and to provide for scalability, it is recommended to configure load balancing for DirectAccess using NLB or an external load balancer (recommended) and publish the virtual IP address (VIP) using the steps described above.

To learn more about DirectAccess, visit http://directaccess.richardhicks.com/

Forefront TMG 2010 SQL Services Fail to Start After Disabling SSL 3.0

November 20, 2014 3 comments

When performing POODLE attack mitigation on the Forefront TMG 2010 firewall by disabling SSL 3.0, you may encounter a scenario in which TMG’s SQL services fail to start after a reboot.

Forefront TMG 2010 SQL Services Fail to Start After Disabling SSL 3.0

Looking through the Windows system event log you may see an error message logged by the Service Control Manager with event ID 36871 which states:

A fatal error occurred while creating an SSL server credential.
The internal error state is 10013.

Forefront TMG 2010 SQL Services Fail to Start After Disabling SSL 3.0

In addition you may also see an error message logged by the Service Control Manager with event ID 7024 which states:

The SQL Server (ISARS) service terminated with service-specific
error %%-2146893007.

Forefront TMG 2010 SQL Services Fail to Start After Disabling SSL 3.0

This can occur when SSL 3.0 is disabled at the same time that TLS 1.0 is also disabled. Even though TLS 1.1 and 1.2 might be enabled, TMG requires that TLS 1.0 specifically be enabled for SQL server services to function properly when SSL 3.0 is disabled.

To resolve this issue, enable TLS 1.0 Server in the registry by changing the value of Enabled to 1, as shown here. If these registry keys do not exist, create them.

Forefront TMG 2010 SQL Services Fail to Start After Disabling SSL 3.0

Restart the server for the change to take effect.

Mitigating the POODLE SSL 3 Vulnerability on Forefront TMG 2010

October 21, 2014 14 comments

Recently a new and very serious vulnerability in the SSL 3.0 protocol has been discovered that allows an attacker to recover sensitive information for an encrypted session. The Qualys SSL Labs server test has been updated to identify and warn about this issue.

Mitigating the POODLE SSL 3.0 Vulnerability on Forefront TMG 2010

Figure 1 – Qualys SSL Labs Server Test Score for TMG Published Secure Web Site

On a Forefront TMG server with SSL hardening implemented as I’ve outlined here and here, the POODLE attack is mitigated, but it is still recommended that you disable SSL 3.0 altogether. SSL 3.0 is an old, outdated protocol that is no longer widely used, and disabling it should have minimal impact on clients connecting to secure web sites published by the Forefront TMG 2010 firewall.

To disable SSL 3.0 on the TMG firewall, open an elevated PowerShell window and execute the following commands:

New-Item -Path “HKLM:\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\SecurityProviders\SCHANNEL\Protocols\SSL 3.0\Server” -Force

New-ItemProperty -Path “HKLM:\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\SecurityProviders\SCHANNEL\Protocols\SSL 3.0\Server” -PropertyType dword -Value 0 -Name Enabled

Note: Use caution when copying/pasting the above commands as wrapping of the text has occurred.

A restart of the server is required for the change to take effect.

Forefront TMG 2010 Network Inspection System NIS Signature Updates

September 15, 2014 2 comments

When Microsoft announced the formal end-of-life for Forefront TMG 2010, they laid out in clear detail the support boundaries for the product going forward. Microsoft stated specifically that they would continue mainstream support for TMG until April of 2015, and extended support would terminate in April 2020. However, the Web Protection Service (WPS) updates for the URL filtering database, antimalware signatures, and the Network Inspection System (NIS) would only continue until December 31, 2015.

Unfortunately, it appears that Microsoft has abandoned the updating for NIS signatures. You may have noticed that a fully updated Forefront TMG firewall with the latest signature updates shows that the last NIS signature was released for security bulletin MS12-050 on July 20, 2012!

Forefront TMG 2010 Network Inspection System (NIS) Signature Updates

Forefront TMG 2010 Network Inspection System (NIS) Signature Updates

I find it difficult to believe that there hasn’t been a single vulnerability discovered or hotfix released since July of 2012 that wouldn’t benefit from NIS protection, so I have to assume that Microsoft is no longer supporting NIS in spite of their pledge to provide support for WPS through the end of 2015. If you are relying on NIS for essential network protection, it’s time to consider deploying a dedicated IDS/IPS solution or another solution that provides this functionality.

Recommended Forefront TMG 2010 SSL and TLS Configuration

September 8, 2014 4 comments

Last year I wrote an article for ISAserver.org that provided detailed guidance for improving security for SSL and TLS protected web sites using Forefront TMG 2010. Many people have reached out to me recently to ask about enabling forward secrecy, which my original article did not include because, at the time, it was not recommended to enable it. However, as times have changed, it is now recommended to enable forward secrecy so I recently wrote a short post with guidance on how to do that. The post was written with a very narrow scope and addressed only the enabling of forward secrecy for TLS. Many of you have since asked for guidance on overall security best practices with regard to SSL and TLS along with adding support for forward secrecy. In addition to the configuration changes detailed in my original ISAserver.org article, I also recommend the following list of SSL and TLS cipher suites be explicitly enforced using the method outlined here.

TLS_ECDHE_ECDSA_WITH_AES_128_GCM_SHA256_P256
TLS_ECDHE_ECDSA_WITH_AES_128_GCM_SHA256_P384
TLS_ECDHE_ECDSA_WITH_AES_128_GCM_SHA256_P521
TLS_ECDHE_ECDSA_WITH_AES_256_GCM_SHA384_P384
TLS_ECDHE_ECDSA_WITH_AES_256_GCM_SHA384_P521
TLS_ECDHE_ECDSA_WITH_AES_128_CBC_SHA256_P256
TLS_ECDHE_ECDSA_WITH_AES_128_CBC_SHA_P256
TLS_ECDHE_ECDSA_WITH_AES_256_CBC_SHA_P256
TLS_ECDHE_RSA_WITH_AES_128_CBC_SHA256_P256
TLS_ECDHE_RSA_WITH_AES_256_CBC_SHA384_P256
TLS_ECDHE_RSA_WITH_AES_128_CBC_SHA_P256
TLS_ECDHE_RSA_WITH_AES_256_CBC_SHA_P256
TLS_DHE_DSS_WITH_AES_128_CBC_SHA256
TLS_DHE_DSS_WITH_AES_256_CBC_SHA256
TLS_DHE_DSS_WITH_AES_128_CBC_SHA
TLS_DHE_DSS_WITH_AES_256_CBC_SHA
TLS_RSA_WITH_AES_128_CBC_SHA256
TLS_RSA_WITH_AES_256_CBC_SHA256
TLS_RSA_WITH_AES_128_CBC_SHA
TLS_RSA_WITH_AES_256_CBC_SHA

Using this configuration, the Forefront TMG 2010 firewall should receive an A rating from the SSL Labs test site (at the time of this writing).

Forefront TMG 2010 SSL Security Configuration

Enabling and supporting the above list of cipher suites will provide the best overall protection and performance for your SSL protected web sites. Note that the list above does not include support for SSL 3.0. If you need to support SSL 3.0 you should add the following cipher suites to the end of the list.

TLS_RSA_WITH_RC4_128_SHA
TLS_RSA_WITH_RC4_128_MD5

Please note that this configuration may not work with older browsers on old, unsupported operating systems, for example Internet Explorer 6 on Windows XP. Before deploying this configuration in production I would encourage you to conduct some testing with your supported clients to ensure operability.

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