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Manual Chapter: Configuring Remote RADIUS Authentication
Manual Chapter
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Overview of remote authentication for application traffic

As an administrator in a large computing environment, you can set up the BIG-IP® system to use this server to authenticate any network traffic passing through the BIG-IP system. This type of traffic passes through a virtual server and through Traffic Management Microkernel (TMM) interfaces. Remote authentication servers typically use one of these protocols:

  • Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP)
  • Remote Authentication Dial-in User Service (RADIUS)
  • TACACS+ (derived from Terminal Access Controller Access Control System [TACACS])
  • Online Status Certificate Protocol (OCSP)
  • Certificate Revocation List Distribution Point (CRLDP)

To configure remote authentication for this type of traffic, you must create a configuration object and a profile that correspond to the type of authentication server you are using to store your user accounts. For example, if your remote authentication server is an LDAP server, you create an LDAP configuration object and an LDAP profile. When implementing a RADIUS, SSL OCSP, or CRLDP authentication module, you must also create a third type of object. For RADIUS and CRLDP authentication, this object is referred to as a server object. For SSL OCSP authentication, this object is referred to as an OCSP responder.

About RADIUS profiles

The BIG-IP® system includes a profile type that you can use to load balance Remote Authentication Dial-In User Service (RADIUS) traffic.

When you configure a RADIUS type of profile, the BIG-IP system can send client-initiated RADIUS messages to load balancing servers. The BIG-IP system can also ensure that those messages are persisted on the servers.

Task summary for RADIUS authentication of application traffic

To configure remote authentication for RADIUS traffic, you must create a configuration object and a profile that correspond to the RADIUS authentication server you are using to store your user accounts. You must also create a third type of object. This object is referred to as a server object.

Task list

Creating a RADIUS server object for authenticating application traffic remotely

A RADIUS server object represents the remote RADIUS server that the BIG-IP system uses to access authentication data.
  1. On the Main tab of the navigation pane, click Local Traffic > Profiles .
  2. From the Authentication menu, choose RADIUS Servers.
  3. Click Create.
  4. In the Namefield, type a unique name for the server object, such asmy_radius_server.
  5. In the Host field, type the host name or IP address of the RADIUS server.
  6. In the Service Port field, type the port number for RADIUS authentication traffic, or retain the default value (1812).
  7. In the Secret field, type the secret key used to encrypt and decrypt packets sent or received from the server.
  8. In the Confirm Secret field, re-type the secret you specified in the Secret field.
  9. In the Timeout field, type a timeout value, in seconds, or retain the default value (3).
  10. Click Finished.
You now have a RADIUS server object that the RADIUS configuration object can reference.

Creating a RADIUS configuration object for authenticating application traffic remotely

The BIG-IP system configuration must include at least one RADIUS server object.
You use a RADIUS authentication module when your authentication data is stored on a remote RADIUS server. A RADIUS configuration object specifies information that the BIG-IP system needs to perform the remote authentication.
  1. On the Main tab of the navigation pane, click Local Traffic > Profiles .
  2. From the Authentication menu, choose Configurations.
  3. Click Create.
  4. In the Name field, type a unique name for the configuration object, such asmy_radius_config.
  5. From the Type list, select RADIUS.
  6. For the RADIUS Serverssetting, select a RADIUS server name in the Available list, and using the Move button, move the name to the Selected list.
  7. In the Client ID field, type a string for the system to send in the Network Access Server (NAS)-Identifier RADIUS attribute.
  8. Click Finished.
You now have a RADIUS configuration object that a RADIUS profile can reference.

Creating a custom RADIUS profile

The next task in configuring RADIUS-based remote authentication on the BIG-IP® system is to create a custom RADIUS profile.
  1. On the Main tab, click Local Traffic > Profiles > Authentication > Profiles .
    The Profiles list screen opens.
  2. Click Create.
    The New Authentication Profile screen opens.
  3. In the Name field, type a unique name for the profile.
  4. Select RADIUS from the Type list.
  5. Select radius in the Parent Profile list.
  6. Select the RADIUS configuration object that you created from the Configuration list.
  7. Click Finished.
The custom RADIUS profile appears in the Profiles list.

Modifying a virtual server for RADIUS authentication

The final task in the process of implementing authentication using a remote RADIUS server is to assign the custom RADIUS profile to a virtual server that is configured to process HTTP traffic (that is, a virtual server to which an HTTP profile is assigned).
  1. On the Main tab, click Local Traffic > Virtual Servers .
    The Virtual Server List screen opens.
  2. Click the name of a virtual server.
  3. From the Configuration list, select Advanced.
  4. For the Authentication Profiles setting, in the Available field, select a custom RADIUS profile, and using the Move button, move the custom RADIUS profile to the Selected field.
  5. Click Update to save the changes.
The virtual server is assigned the custom RADIUS profile.
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