Original Publication Date: 11/08/2017
This version of F5 Helper Applications for Chrome, Firefox, and Edge browsers was released with BIG-IP APM 13.0, on February 23, 2017.
NPAPI plugin support has largely been discontinued by browser manufacturers. Functionality that was previously installed with NPAPI plugins is now handled by helper applications, which are installed on the user's machine, and handled with protocol handlers. We install an Endpoint Check application and a Network Access application. These clients can be downloaded from the APM administration console and can be distributed for download by users, installed by group policy, or installed by device management solutions.
The following privileges are required to install the F5 Helper Applications.
|EPS Helper App||User||Standard||Root|
|VPN Helper App||Admin||Admin||Root|
This solution works with 32-bit or 64-bit Chrome, Firefox, and Edge browsers. Internet Explorer and Safari are currently not supported through this method, as they still support NPAPI. We continue to support the previous method with NPAPI browser plugins in Internet Explorer and Safari.
For users that must access BIG-IP APM 13.0 and an earlier version of BIG-IP (for example, 12.1), such mixed-version connections are supported, with some caveats.
Clients can be downloaded from the APM console, and pushed through group policy as in previous releases.
This release supports Linux versions that comply with the freedesktop specification. On Debian Linux, the f5epi and f5vpn packages require the user to install a new version of QT (minimum version 5.5) that doesn't exist in the stable repository.
The following issues and behaviors have been identified in this version of the helper applications.
Use the package manager native to your Linux distribution (for example apt, zypper, dnf, or yum) to remove f5epi (the F5 Endpoint Check application) and f5vpn (the F5 VPN application).
To uninstall, move the helper applications to the Trash on macOS.
|572103||Windows Protected Workspace does not work with Chrome, Firefox or Edge browsers. As a workaround, use Internet Explorer on Windows 7 and Windows 8.1. Protected Workspace is not supported on Windows 10.|
|572121||After a user launches network access and closes the browser window, no warning message is shown to the user. This is a change in behavior from previous versions. This behavior change is applicable to browsers where a protocol handler is used to launch network access applications (Chrome, Firefox, Spartan). The warning message is only shown in IE as IE still uses plugin-based network access. This behavior will be deprecated in IE as well in a future release. The user needs to explicitly close network access by clicking Disconnect in the network access application window.|
|574648||When a user connects to an APM device configured with Endpoint Inspection for the first time using the Edge browser, the browser prompts the user to install an application from the Windows Store. This is confusing because there is no application in the store. Have the end user dismiss this dialog box and follow the prompts in the browser to download and install the F5 client components.|
|587648||Cache cleaner fails to launch from Chrome, Firefox, and Edge browsers. Cache cleaner is not supported for this client, so the access policy takes the fallback branch.|
|589103||Windows Universal app cannot use application tunnels without establishing a VPN first.|
|590291||The new web client depends on Qt library version 5.5. On some Linux distributions, this version may not be available in standard repositories. Web client installation fails on such distributions. As a workaround, download and install the required qt library from the non-standard repository. Then build and install required Qt library on the distribution before installing the web client.|
|592410||When installing web client packages downloaded from APM, installation may fail on certain Linux distributions with the following error message: nothing provides libQt5WebKit.so.5(). As a workaround, either use a distribution of Linux that has libQt5WebKit.so.5 or later installed, or install libQt5WebKit.so.5 or later before installing web clients.|
|598401||On some Linux distributions, Google Chrome will show a prompt to launch xdg-open to launch the f5epi:// and f5vpn:// URL schemes if f5vpn and f5epi applications are not installed. This may confuse the user trying to connect.|
|600493||Endpoint checking and VPN cannot be launched from Google Chrome on certain Linux distributions. Endpoint checking and VPN launching through Google Chrome on Linux is currently supported only on the following distributions:
As a workaround, use a supported Linux distribution.
|600676||Log viewer cannot be launched from the client UI. As a workaround, open the log file from the command shell.|
|603081||Allow access to white listed URLs in locked client mode|
|604498||On Windows 10, if f5vpn or F5epi applications are not installed on the user's machine, a message box is shown to the user. This message box is on top of the message displayed on the web page that shows instructions to the user about how to proceed. This can result in user confusion. As a workaround, close the message box.|
|615816||If user logs onto APM and launches the VPN client and then closes the browser, the VPN will continue to run and the session will not stop. This is a change in behavior from previous plugin-based web clients. Close both the browser and the VPN client to stop the session.|
|629233||Once the VPN is established and F5 Access updates the proxy configuration on the client, the first request sent from the Firefox browser does not use the updated proxy configuration. Subsequent requests use the correct proxy configuration.|
|629774||If a VE deployment with APM provisioned is allocated less than 8 GB of RAM, TMM restarts periodically. To work around this, allocate a minimum of 8 GB of RAM to a VE instance on which APM is provisioned.|
The following client features are available in version 13.0:
|Windows 7, Windows 8.1 and Windows 10||Mac OS X 10.11 and macOS Sierra||Linux*|
|Google Chrome||Google Chrome||Google Chrome|
|Mozilla Firefox||Mozilla Firefox||Mozilla Firefox|
|Windows 7, Windows 8.1 and Windows 10||Mac OS X 10.11 and macOS Sierra||Linux|
|Continuous endpoint checks**||Continuous endpoint checks||Continuous endpoint checks|
|Network Access (SSL VPN)||Network Access (SSL VPN)||Network Access (SSL VPN)|
|Static Aplication Tunnels|
|Optimized Tunnels (with or without VPN)|
**Windows Protected Workspace and Windows Cache and Session Control access policy items are not supported with the F5 Helper Applications in Chrome, Firefox, or Edge browsers. Use Internet Explorer to support these features on Windows 7 and Windows 8.1. Protected Workspace is not supported on Windows 10.
|Phone - North America:||1-888-882-7535 or (206) 272-6500|
|Phone - Outside North America, Universal Toll-Free:||+800 11 ASK 4 F5 or (800 11275 435)|
|Fax:||See Regional Support for your area.|
For additional information, please visit http://www.f5.com.
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