Frequently Asked Questions¶
The Aviatrix product consists of a controller and gateways. When the product is deployed in the public cloud marketplace, what you launch is the controller instance and from controller console you launch gateways by using cloud provider APIs.
When the product is deployed as a virtual appliance in a virtualized datacenter environment, the controller and gateway are bundled into one virtual image, such as OVF and VHD.
The following FAQ discusses only the cloud deployment scenario.
Aviatrix Secure Cloud Network Platform¶
What can Aviatrix platform do for me?¶
Aviatrix cloud-native networking solution provides an end to end secure network solution for AWS, Azure, Google GCloud and Oracle Cloud (OCI). The solution includes AWS Global Transit Network, an enterprise OpenVPN® access to VPC/VNet, encrypted routing for VPC/VNet to VPC/VNet traffic, Stateful Firewall and Egress FQDN and monitoring and logging of link status and latency. The solution enables you to build a secure private network spanning one or more public clouds where a user can access any instance/VM with a private IP address directly. No more bastion stations and jump hosts: the solution gives the user the seamless experience that they enjoy when using the on-prem network.
For an Aviatrix overview, check out this document.
In addition, the product interoperates with any third party IPSEC capable devices, including AWS VGW and Aviatrix’s own on-prem virtual appliance CloudN.
Architecturally, Aviatrix solution is a centrally managed, loosely coupled and globally deployed platform built for the cloud from the ground up.
How do I launch the product?¶
The product consists of two components: the Controller and one or more gateways. The gateway is launched from the controller.
The Controller provides a central console for all provisioning, monitoring and upgrades of the services.
The Controller is also available in AWS and Azure marketplace. It is also available as a GCloud community image. For marketplace launch, search for “Aviatrix” in marketplace.
Follow Getting Started on AWS instructions to launch Controller on AWS.
Follow Getting Started on Azure instructions to launch Controller on Azure.
Follow Getting Started on Google instructions to launch Controller on Google.
What are the deployment requirements for Aviatrix product?¶
Aviatrix Controller and gateways are deployed on public subnets with public IP addresses for Internet access, as shown below.
How do I access the Controller?¶
If your Controller is launched as an AMI from marketplace, you access the Controller instance via a web browser.
Login with the username “admin”. The first time password is the private IP address of the controller instance. You are required to change the password at your first login.
If you are using an Aviatrix Hosted Service (AHS), following the instructions sent to you to access.
How do I secure the Controller access?¶
There are several ways to secure your Controller access, as discussed below.
1. Enable Controller Security Group Management¶
Only TCP port 443 needs to be opened for inbound traffic to the Controller. If you wish to reduce the scope of source addresses by specifying a custom IP address, you must include all gateway public IP addresses, in addition to your own public IP address. This is because gateways launched from the controller use its public IP address to communicate back to the Controller.
You can use the Controller Security Management feature to automatically manage the Controller instance’s inbound rules from gateways.
Go to Settings -> Controller -> Security Group Management, select the primary account, and click Enable.
When this feature is enabled, the Controller will immediately create 4 security groups. Since each security group can support 50 security rules, the Controller can support up to 200 gateways.
After this feature is enabled, you can now edit the security rules that are outside gateways public IP addresses to limit the source address range.
(If you deploy Aviatrix SAML clients for user VPN access, you can follow this document to add security to the Controller.)
2. Use signed certificate¶
The Aviatrix Controller is shipped with a self-signed certificate, therefore there is a “Note Secure” warning sign shown on your browser console.
You can change that by importing your own signed certificate. To do so, go to Settings ->Advanced -> Security. At the panel “CERTIFICATE REQUEST - SEND TO CERTIFICATE AUTHORITY”, send a CSR (certificate sign request), then follow the instructions to import CA and the signed Controller certificate.
You can also use an ALB in front of the Controller.
3. Remove less secure TLS version(s)¶
You can disable access from a browser that runs TLSv1 and TLSv1.1 and only supports TLSv1.2. To do so, go to Settings -> Advanced -> Security -> TLS VERSIONS SUPPORT. Uncheck TLSv1 and TLSv1.1.
4. Enable LDAP or DUO second factor to login in¶
In addition to username and password login credentials to the Controller, you can also enable LDAP or DUO authentication.
To enable LDAP authentication, go to Settings -> Controller -> LDAP Login and fill the form.
To enable DUO authentication, go to Settings -> Controller -> 2FA Login and follow the instructions to set up DUO.
5. Create Read-only accounts¶
You can create read_only accounts for your operations team. They can view and list pages but not making changes. Follow the answer to have it setup.
6. Remove admin account login¶
The “admin” account login can be disabled to instead use account user.
To disable admin login to the Controller, go to Settings -> Controller -> Login Customization. Click Disable.
Please note that you need a local user with admin privileges to be created first, before you can disable the “admin” account.
7. Encrypt Controller EBS Volume¶
Follow the instructions here to encrypt the Controller EBS Volume after the Controller is launched.
8. Encrypt gateway EBS Volume¶
What are the events that the Aviatrix Controller monitors?¶
- VPN tunnel status Alert when it goes down and alert when it comes back up.
- Gateway health status Alert when gateway goes to down state. Alert when it comes back up.
- Overlap network CIDR range Alert when BGP routes overlap.
- Route limit Alert when BGP route limits reach a threshold.
- TGW Auditor Monitors the configuration changes, alert when there is inconsistency between AWS console and Aviatrix Controller for resources related to TGW operation.
- IAM role and policy Alert when account IAM policy is not up to date or being deleted.
- Guard Duty integration Alert and block malicious IP addresses.
- Black hole route Alert when VPC route table has inactive routes.
- Public subnet Alert when there are unwanted instances launched on specific public subnets.
- CPU/Memory/Disk Alert when gateway memory or disk space reaches 95% of its capacity.
How do I ensure my Transit Network is secure when an Aviatrix gateway is deployed on a public subnet?¶
The customer concerns¶
Some organizations have concerns about having public subnets in a VPC. The concern is that if there were a public subnet in a VPC, users may find ways to launch an instance on the public subnet and associate the instance with a public IP address, thus enabling the instance to access the Internet without going through a proper egress firewall (in the cloud or on-prem).
However when deploying a AWS Global Transit Network solution, a vendor gateway must be deployed on a public subnet in the Transit VPC. This is true for all vendor appliances on the AWS marketplace. This is because the vendor gateway in the Transit VPC establishes IPSEC tunnels with Spoke VPC over public IP address, whether or not the Spoke VPC deploys a vendor gateway or VGW. Another reason is the vendor gateway requires SSH access to configure its VPN tunnels.
Note that this connectivity between Transit VPC and Spoke VPC, although using public IP addresses as IPSEC tunnel endpoints, does not imply that traffic between Transit VPC and Spoke VPC go through the Internet. AWS recognizes that it owns these public IP addresses and therefore always tries to route the traffic through its own backbone network without ever going out to Internet.
The Aviatrix solution¶
An Aviatrix gateway instance has strict security groups. It only opens to the Controller on TCP port 443 and port 22 (for Controller to reach the gateway for diagnostics purpose.)
In addition, Aviatrix provides multiple features to ensure your Transit Network is secure, as described below.
- If you use AWS Transit Gateway (TGW) to build a transit network, the Aviatrix gateway is only launched in the transit VPC, all spoke VPCs have no Aviatrix gateway.
- Enable Gateway Subnet Monitoring. When this feature is enabled, the Controller will monitor the selected public subnets periodically. When it detects any instances being launched on these subnets, the Controller will alert the admin and stop the instances.
- Enable VPC Egress Firewall. If you need to optimize application performance, you should consider allowing instances to access Internet directly, rather than backhauling to on-prem. When this feature is enabled, any traffic initiated from instances on the private subnet must go through the inline and in VPC egress whitelists before going out to the Internet.
- Enable Remote User VPN. If you need to optimize developer experience (less latency, higher bandwidth), you should consider allowing users to access instances in the VPC directly with SSL VPN. When this feature is enabled, all user traffic is tracked and logged for audit and tracking purposes.
- Secure the Controller. Follow the guidelines here to secure the Controller access.
- Log Everything. Enable Logging to send all events from gateways, Controllers and user activities to your favorite log service platform for audit and compliance.
Is Aviatrix Cloud Gateway a SaaS offer?¶
No. The Aviatrix Controller and gateways are software products that are deployed in your own network perimeter.
Where do I start?¶
The first time when you login, complete the Onboarding process. It takes a few steps.
If you have a BYOL license or use a community image, you need to have a customer ID provided by Aviatrix to be able to use the product. Contact email@example.com if you do not have a customer ID.
What is an Aviatrix Access Account?¶
An Aviatrix Access Account is specific and unique on the controller. It contains cloud credentials, for example, your AWS IAM Access Key ID and Secret Key. The controller uses these credentials to launch Aviatrix gateways by using cloud APIs.
An Aviatrix Cloud Account can correspond to multiple cloud accounts. For example, it can contain credentials for an AWS IAM account, Azure account and GCloud account.
How do I upgrade software?¶
Click Settings -> Upgrade. This upgrades to the latest release of the controller software.
When a new release becomes available, an alert message appears on Dashboard. An email will also be sent to the admin of the controller.
Is there a reference design example?¶
Check out docs.aviatrix.com.
Logging and Monitoring¶
How do I forward syslog events to my Logstash server?¶
Click on Settings-> Logging ->LogStash logging and input the required parameters to enable forwarding of controller syslog events and all gateways syslog and auth log to a Logstash server.
SUMO Logic, Splunk, DataDog and rSyslog are also supported.
What are the monitoring capabilities?¶
Encrypted tunnel (peering and site2cloud) status is monitored. When a tunnel status changes, an alert email is sent to the controller admin.
Active VPN users are displayed on the Dashboard. Click on any username and the user VPN connectivity history is displayed.
You can also disconnect a user from the dashboard.
Can alert emails be sent to a different email address?¶
Yes, you can choose an alternative email address to send alert messages. This is useful if the controller admin is different from the operation team.
Can there be multiple admins?¶
Yes. Username “admin” is the default admin user. But you can create multiple users with admin privileges. Follow the instructions to learn more about setting up multiple admin users.
Is there 2FA support to log in to the console?¶
Yes. In addition to password login, DUO authentication and LDAP are supported.
Starting from Release 4.2, SAML authentication is supported to login to the Controller console.
Can there be read only account for operation team?¶
Yes. Accounts -> Account Users -> Add A NEW USER, at Account Name field, select “read_only” from the drop down menu. This user account will have views to all pages but cannot make changes to any configurations.
Is Aviatrix FIPS 140-2 compliant?¶
Yes. Aviatrix has achieved FIPS 140-2 compliant status with certificate number #3475 as listed at NIST site.
What are the FIPS 140-2 compliant algorithms?¶
FIPS 140-2 approved crypto functions can be found in this link.. According to this document, the following algorithms that are supported on Aviatrix are FIPS 140-2 compliant.
|Phase 1 Authentication||SHA-1, SHA-512, SHA-384, SHA-256|
|Phase 1 DH Groups||2, 1, 5, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18|
|Phase 1 Encryption||AES-256-CBC, AES-192-CBC, AES-128-CBC, 3DES|
|Phase 2 Authentication||HMAC-SHA-1, HMAC-SHA-512, HMAC-SHA-384, HMAC-SHA-256|
|Phase 2 DH Groups||2, 1, 5, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18|
|Phase 2 Encryption||AES-256-CBC, AES-192-CBC, AES-128-CBC, AES-128-GCM-64, AES-128-GCM-96, AES-128-GCM-128, 3DES|
SSL VPN encryption algorithm is AES-256-CBC.
SSL VPN authentication algorithm is SHA512.
What is the difference between IKEv1 and IKEv2?¶
Internet Key Exchange (IKE) protocol is the control plane to IPSEC data encryption. Its responsibility is in setting up security association that allow two parties to send data securely.
There is no difference in data encryption algorithms and data encryption strength itself between IKEv1 and IKEv2.
The primary difference between IKEv1 and IKEv2 is that it takes fewer messages to establish the security association in IKEv2.
There are a couple of other differences regarding IKEv2, which has a better support for mobile devices which does not apply to site to site and site to cloud VPN where Aviatrix is being used.
How to encrypt Aviatrix Controller and gateway EBS volume?¶
You can follow the instructions here to encrypt the Controller.
For automation, you can reference our python script on github repository.
Starting Release 4.2, Aviatrix gateway EBS volume can be encrypted from the Controller console.
How to launch the Controller by Terraform?¶
Terraform for Controller launch is supported as a community project on github on this Aviatrix repo.
How to migrate a Controller from a Metered license to BYOL license?¶
Follow the instructions described in this document.
What is the best practice to ensurer high availability of Controller?¶
Since Aviatrix Controller is not in the data plane, temporary loss of the Controller does not affect the existing tunnels or packet forwarding.
For AWS deployment, you can also enable Controller HA for auto recovery when the current Controller becomes unhealthy.
Do you have the CloudFormation source code for launch the Controller?¶
Yes, the source repository for Controller launch can be found on github at here.
How does the user VPN charge work for Metered AMI in AWS Marketplace?¶
If you subscribe to Aviatrix Secure Networking Platform PAYG - Metered, the user VPN cost is $0.03/hour/connection. $0.03 is counted each hour when the VPN user is connected to the Aviatrix VPN gateway. Once the VPN user disconnects, the metering for that session stops.
Aviatrix Controller monitors the active VPN sessions and reports to AWS Marketplace engine every hour the number of active VPN sessions in the last hour. Note when a VPN user connects, the session is counted for the next hour.
Can you explain the AWS Marketplace Metered AMI pricing models?¶
Aviatrix Metered AMI in the AWS Marketplace is a multi dimensions pay as you consume model. Each price unit represents one or more use cases. You are charged for the specific use case you consume. For example, “Number of User or Client SSL VPN Connections” is $0.03/hour/connection, which means if you deploy User VPN use case, each client connection is charged for $0.03/hour while the VPN client is connected. Once the VPN client disconnects, the charge stops.
The details are explained in the table below.
|Unit Type||Cost/Unite||Use Case|
|Number of VPC-to-VPC IPSec Tunnel Connections within AWS||$0.16||TGW VPC attachment, Aviatrix Spoke VPC attachment, encrypted peering, Transit Peering|
|Number of User or Client SSL VPN Connections||$0.03||User VPN|
|Number of Gateways running Security Services||$0.16||Aviatrix gateways with FQDN service|
|Number of VPC to Site or Multi cloud IPSec Tunnel Connections||$0.48||Site2Cloud use case|
How is security updates handled and delivered by Aviatrix?¶
These are the steps:
- Field Notice All Aviatrix customers are notified when a security update is available.
- Security Patch Aviatrix Controller provides a inline software patch to fix vulnerability with the instructions from the Field Notice. The updates do not require reboot of the Controller or gateways most of the time.
Is Aviatrix tunnel price expensive?¶
Aviatrix pricing is not expensive. Majority of Aviatrix unit price, such as FQDN, TGW attachment and Spoke gateway attachment is priced at $0.16/unit. The table below compares annual cost of an Aviatrix tunnel to an EC2.
As you can see, a tunnel or attachment cost is less than a single c5.xlarge or m5.xlarge cost. In a VPC, you may have tens or hundreds of instances that each costs more in a year than an Aviatrix tunnel.
For example, if you have 100 instances in a VPC, the additional network cost introduced by Aviatrix is about 1% of your compute cost. Even when you scale to more VPCs, this cost ratio does not change. Designing a network that optimizes on network cost is not a good idea. On the other hand, Aviatrix solution provides you many benefits in operations.
|Type||Unit Price||Annual Price|
|Aviatrix TGW attachment||$0.16/hour||$1401/year|
|Aviatrix FQDN gateway||$0.16/hour||$1401/year|
How to recover when a Controller software upgrade fails?¶
Here is the best practice procedure to follow:
- Before a software upgrade, go to Settings -> Maintenance -> Backup & Restore -> Backup Now. This will save a copy of the deployment configuration to your S3 bucket.
- Do a try dun before upgrade. Go to Settings -> Maintenance -> Upgrade -> UPGRADE TO THE LATEST -> Dry Run. If Dry Run is successful, proceed to the next step. If Dry Run fail, do not proceed to upgrade until you root cause the issue.
- Upgrade. Go to Settings -> Maintenance -> Upgrade -> UPGRADE TO THE LATEST -> Upgrade. Wait for the process to finish.
- If Controller upgrade is successful and some gateways fail, you can force upgrade the failed gateway again. Go to Troubleshoot -> Gateway -> FORCE UPGRADE. Select the gateway and click Upgrade.
- If gateway force upgrade fail, proceed to replace the gateway. Go to Troubleshoot -> Gateway -> GATEWAY REPLACE. Select the failed gateway and click Replace.
- If Controller upgrade fails, follow this document from Step 2 to the end.
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