Today, Microsoft announced the end of life for the Forefront UAG 2010 product. Microsoft will continue to provide mainstream support for UAG until April 14, 2015, and extended support until April 14, 2020. Existing customers with active Software Assurance on their existing UAG licenses as of December 1, 2013, may add new UAG server instances, users, and devices without having to purchase additional UAG licenses. In addition, existing customers who have purchased Forefront UAG server licenses will be given upgrade rights to Windows Server 2012 R2, which provides some of the remote access features found in Forefront UAG. For example, Windows Server 2012 R2 supports DirectAccess, client-based VPN, and reverse web proxy with new Web Application Proxy role.
With regard to license upgrade rights, users are entitled to a Windows Server 2012 R2 license for each Forefront UAG server license (or External Connector license) they currently own. Software Assurance for UAG can still be purchased until January 1, 2014. Forefront UAG 2010 will be removed from the pricelist on July 1, 2014. Forefront UAG 2010 will continue to be available from Microsoft OEM hardware partners like Iron Networks for the foreseeable future, however.
Good news! Service Pack 4 (SP4) for Forefront Unified Access Gateway (UAG) 2010 is now available for download. This latest service pack for UAG includes updates to support Windows 8.1 client devices using Internet Explorer 11, the native mail app, and Remote Desktop Connection (RDC) 8.1 client. In addition, SP4 for Forefront UAG 2010 also includes support for publishing RemoteApps from a Remote Desktop Session Host running on Windows Server 2012 or 2012 R2. The service pack also includes fixes for various reported issues.
KB2907776 - The UserMgrCom service crashes intermittently in Forefront UAG 2010
KB2909151 - Trunk authentication fails when the global catalog server is unavailable in Forefront UAG 2010
KB2909168 - The W3wp.exe process randomly stops and causes all sessions to disconnect in Forefront UAG 2010
KB2909182 - “The URL contains an invalid path” error occurs when you try to access an Exchange 2013 OWA website
KB2909191 - You cannot connect to corporate IPv4 resources by using DirectAccess after Forefront UAG 2010 Service Pack 3 is installed
KB2909350 - An SSL VPN application that has the Socket Forwarding mode set to Disabled uses 100 percent of the CPU’s time in Forefront UAG 2010
KB2909353 - You have to authenticate again to the ADFS server when the published server is configured for single sign-on in Forefront UAG 2010
KB2909356 - A detailed HTTP 403.14 error message occurs when you go to a specific InternalSite URL in a Forefront UAG 2010 environment
KB2909365 - A memory leak in W3wp.exe occurs when Outlook Anywhere is published through a Forefront UAG 2010 trunk
KB2909367 - Intermittent HTTP 500 error codes when you access a Forefront UAG 2010 portal
KB2909376 - File uploads do not occur to SharePoint Server 2013 or SkyDrive Pro through Forefront UAG 2010
KB2910407 - An internal 500 error occurs if a custom URL logoff page is configured in Forefront UAG 2010
KB2910413 - Multiple 4625 event IDs are logged when a user logs on in Forefront UAG 2010
KB2910467 - Configuration activation fails on some servers in a large array in Forefront UAG 2010
KB2910498 - A handle leak occurs in Lsass.exe in Forefront UAG 2010
KB2910506 - An authentication prompt is received even though a user is successfully authenticated in Forefront UAG 2010
KB2910517 - An incorrect domain password policy may be used if Active Directory integrated authentication is configured in Forefront UAG 2010
You must have Forefront UAG 2010 SP3 hotfix rollup 1 installed prior to installing SP4. You can download SP3 rollup 1 here. You can download Forefront UAG 2010 SP4 here. Once the update is installed the new Forefront UAG 2010 build number will be 4.0.4083.10000.
When Microsoft first announced Windows Azure Multi-Factor Authentication, a cloud-based strong authentication solution, my first thought was “I wonder if it works with Forefront TMG 2010?” Being cloud-based, my first thought was perhaps not. However, once I started digging in to it I quickly learned that it includes a software component that can be installed on-premises and will even integrate with on-premises security solutions via a number of interfaces, including RADIUS. Forefront TMG 2010 has supported RADIUS authentication for many years, so I put together a test lab and in no time at all I had Windows Azure multi-factor authentication working with Forefront TMG 2010 remote access VPN. Forefront TMG 2010 integrated with Windows Azure multi-factor authentication provides the highest level of protection for remote access users. Leveraging Windows Azure cloud-based strong authentication is extremely cost effective, with very low per user or per authentication costs and no on-premises hardware to purchase. The Windows Azure public cloud, which is ISO/IEC27001:2005 certified, provides the most secure and reliable strong authentication service available today. To learn how to configure Forefront TMG 2010 to work with Windows Azure multi-factor authentication, click here.
Hotfix rollup 4 for Microsoft Forefront TMG 2010 with Service Pack 2 (SP2) is now available for download. This latest hotfix rollup includes fixes for the following issues:
KB2889345 – Accounts are locked out beyond the AccountLockoutResetTime period in Forefront TMG 2010 SP2
KB2890549 – Incorrect Performance Monitor values when queried from a .NET Framework app in Forefront TMG 2010
KB2890563 – “URL” and “Destination Host Name” values are unreadable in the web proxy log of Forefront TMG 2010
KB2891026 – Firewall Service leaks memory if Malware Inspection is enabled in Forefront TMG 2010
KB2888619 – A password change is unsuccessful if a user’s DN attribute contains a forward slash and an Active Directory LDAP-defined special character in Forefront TMG 2010
KB2863383 – “Query stopped because an error occurred while it was running” when you run a non-live query in Forefront TMG 2010 SP2
KB2899720 – Threat Management Gateway 2010 incorrectly sends “Keep-Alive” headers when it replies to Media Player WPAD file requests
KB2899716 – Firewall service (Wspsrv.exe) crashes when a web publishing request is handled in Forefront TMG 2010
KB2899713 – Access to certain SSL websites may be unavailable when HTTPS Inspection is enabled in Forefront Threat Management Gateway 2010
You can download hotfix rollup 4 for Forefront TMG 2010 SP2 here. After applying this update, the new Forefront TMG 2010 build number will be 7.0.9193.601.
Recently I wrote an article for ISAserver.org about publishing Exchange 2013 Outlook Web App (OWA) using Forefront TMG 2010. In spite of the fact that many organizations are migrating their e-mail services to the cloud, there are many organizations who cannot, for a variety of reasons, take advantage of cloud services for e-mail. This makes Exchange 2013 a compelling upgrade for many companies. Historically Forefront TMG 2010 and its predecessors were the go-to service for securing access to on-premises Exchange implementations. Forefront TMG 2010 supports OWA publishing with native publishing wizards, allowing you to select which version of Exchange you are publishing, with the added bonus of providing in-box forms-based authentication (FBA) templates that matched the look and feel of the Exchange version you were publishing. Since Forefront TMG 2010 has been deprecated, Microsoft has not updated Forefront TMG 2010 to include support for Exchange 2013 OWA. However, you can still publish Exchange 2013 OWA using Forefront TMG by following the instructions outlined in my ISAserver.org post. When using this method, the Exchange 2010 FBA templates are used. This makes the user experience somewhat disjointed, with the FBA pages not matching the new, updated look and feel of OWA 2013. To remedy this, I reached out to my good friend Scott Glew at Fastvue. Scott is a terrific web developer, as evidenced by the amazing UI included with the TMG Reporter solution. In short order, Scott whipped up some customized Forefront TMG 2010 FBA templates to match the look and feel of OWA 2013 and has made them available for free. Now if you’re publishing Exchange 2013 OWA using Forefront TMG 2010, you can download these custom templates and use them to provide a consistent experience for your Exchange OWA users. Enjoy!
Recently I wrote an article for ISAserver.org entitled Improving SSL Security for Forefront TMG 2010 Published Web Sites. In the article I demonstrate how to evaluate the current security configuration of your Forefront TMG firewall for published SSL web sites and how to make changes to the default settings in order to improve the overall security posture of TMG in reverse proxy scenarios. Implementing these changes will provide dramatically improved protection for Forefront TMG published SSL web sites. The steps outlined in the article include details for changes to be made to specific registry entries on the Forefront TMG 2010 firewall. I’ve had a number of requests to make the registry file available for download in order to simplify the process and ensure that these changes are made correctly. You can download the registry file used in the ISAserver.org post here. Enjoy!
Forefront TMG End of Life
With the end of life announcement for Microsoft Forefront TMG 2010, one of the most common questions I am asked is “What should I replace my Forefront TMG firewall with?” Many are surprised when I reply “Why do you want to replace it?” Simply because Forefront TMG will not be developed in the future does not mean there’s an immediate need to replace it. Considering the fact that Forefront TMG mainstream support extends until April 2015, and extended support lasts until April 2020, often the decision to replace TMG is nothing more than a knee-jerk reaction to marketing pressure by vendors of competing solutions.
Do You Need to Replace Forefront TMG 2010 Now?
If you have deployed Forefront TMG 2010 as a firewall, basic forward or reverse web proxy, or remote access or site-to-site VPN, there is no need to replace Forefront TMG 2010 right now. All of the features used in these deployment scenarios will continue to function in to perpetuity. You have until April 2020 to find a replacement for Forefront TMG, which should give you plenty of time to consider alternative solutions. However, if you have deployed Forefront TMG as a secure web gateway, the situation is a little different. Although support for the product extends until April 2020, the Web Protection Service (WPS) subscription will only function until the end of 2015. This means that URL filtering reputation database updates, antimalware signatures, and Network Inspection System (NIS) signatures will no longer be updated past this time. Not to worry, there are some excellent cloud-based security solutions that can be integrated with Forefront TMG 2010 to effectively extend the life of TMG for the foreseeable future.
Extending the Life of Forefront TMG 2010 with Zscaler
Recently I had the opportunity to evaluate the Zscaler Cloud-based security solution. Zscaler provides security-as-a-service and integrates seamlessly with Forefront TMG to provide essential web security protection with URL filtering, dynamic web content control, virus and malicious software scanning, HTTPS inspection capabilities, and more. The Zscaler security solution provides significantly more protection than the native Forefront TMG technologies offer. There are also tremendous economies of scale to be gained by using this cloud-based security solution, as Zscaler has more than 4000 enterprise customers in 180 countries, servicing more than 10 million users globally. The threat intelligence gained from having such a broad view of Internet activity worldwide enables Zscaler to quickly identify emerging threats on a global basis and extend protection to all of its customers quickly and effectively.
Zscaler Integration with Forefront TMG 2010
Integrating an on-premises Forefront TMG firewall with the Zscaler cloud is accomplished without having to install a plug-in on the TMG firewall. On-premises web traffic is delivered to the Zscaler cloud service by Forefront TMG through the use of web proxy chaining rules. After you’ve signed up for the service, simply configure a web proxy chaining rule to forward web proxy requests from Forefront TMG to the Zscaler cloud proxy gateways.
Zscaler Protection for Mobile Users
The Zscaler solution has some additional advantages over Forefront TMG’s native web protection mechanisms. With a cloud-based solution, Zscaler’s protection can also be extended transparently to mobile users, keeping them safe regardless of where they are. Zscaler has more than 100 datacenters worldwide, ensuring quick response times and low latency wherever the mobile user happens to be. Integrating individual clients can be done using proxy PAC files to route traffic to Zscaler’s datacenters. Additionally there is an option to install an agent on the client to forward traffic, which has the benefit of preventing the end user from disabling proxy settings to bypass content filtering restrictions.
Forefront TMG 2010 and Zscaler – Better Together
You may be asking yourself “Why not just use Zscaler exclusively? Why do I need TMG at all?” Valid question! Integrating Zscaler with Forefront TMG provides the best of both worlds in terms of security and performance. With Forefront TMG 2010 on premises, you have a Common Criteria-certified enterprise-class firewall to provide the highest level of security for your network. You can leverage strong user and group-based authentication, and you gain the added benefit of local caching for web content. In addition, you can make use of Forefront TMG 2010′s other features like multi-networking to create perimeter or DMZ networks for isolating public-facing services, reverse proxy for on-premises web-based and non-web based applications and services, remote access VPN for managed and non-managed mobile users, and site-to-site VPN to connect remote offices, business partners, or cloud service providers.
Forefront TMG End of Sale? Not Quite!
Although Microsoft is committed to supporting Forefront TMG 2010 for many years to come, they are no longer selling Forefront TMG 2010 licenses or the Web Protection Service (WPS) subscription licenses. If you’ve already deployed Forefront TMG 2010, or have already purchased Forefront TMG processor licenses and the WPS subscription, you have nothing to worry about. If you’re looking to deploy Forefront TMG 2010 today, you can’t purchase licenses for the software from Microsoft. However, you can still obtain Forefront TMG 2010 through a Microsoft OEM partner like Iron Networks. Iron Networks has a complete line of dedicated, purpose-built, ready-to-deploy hardware appliances running Forefront TMG 2010. (Full disclosure: Iron Networks is my current employer.)
Keep Calm and Carry On
In my estimation, you can safely deploy or keep Forefront TMG 2010 in your environment and still gain a healthy return on your investment for many years to come. If you’re using Forefront TMG for publishing services such as Outlook Web App (OWA) or SharePoint, or you’re leveraging client-based remote access or site-to-site VPN, you have nothing to worry about. If you’re using Forefront TMG as a secure web gateway, you can enhance and extend the solution by using Zscaler’s cloud-based security solution for less than you would have paid for the Microsoft WPS subscription. No need to go out and replace your Forefront TMG 2010 solution for quite a few more years! If you are considering a new deployment, you can still purchase Forefront TMG 2010 from Microsoft OEM partners like Iron Networks. So Keep Calm and Deploy Forefront TMG 2010 today!