This installation guide describes the integration of ThreatSTOP and A10 ADC / TPS devices using the Web Automation features


A10 Networks’ Threat Intelligence solution powered by ThreatSTOP is an end-to-end security solution for detection, blocking, and reporting of inbound and outbound security threats. This solution provides the ability to proactively block known threats based on malicious indicator threat feeds downloaded regularly to the appliance. The A10 device imports the threat feeds as a class list (TPS) or BW List (ADC) to block malicious IPs and protect the network.

This installation guide will cover how to integrate ThreatSTOP and A10’s Threat Protection Service (TPS) and Application Delivery Controller (ADC), running A10’s Advanced Core Operating System (ACOS).

DDOS Targets

Web Automation features

This document provides the steps when using the Web Automation features of ThreatSTOP. For the command line-based installation, please read this document instead. The Web Automation features are:

  • Client configuration settings are managed on the ThreatSTOP portal, instead of using the TSCM command line.
  • Changes to the policy selection are automatically propagated from the portal to the TSCM
  • The TSCM reports problems applying policies or uploading logs to the ThreatSTOP Portal, providing more visibility into potentials system or network problems.

Requirements and Compatibility

ACOS Releases

  • For Thunder TPS: ACOS 3.1.2 or higher
  • For Thunder ADC: ACOS 4.1.0 or higher

Supported A10 Hardware Models

  • Thunder TPS: Thunder 840, 1040, 3030S, 4435, 5433, 6435, 6635, 14045
  • Thunder ADC: Thunder 840, 930, 940, 1030S, 1040, 3030S, 3040, 3230, 3430, 4430, 4440, 5330, 5430-11, 5440, 5630, 5840, 6430, 6440, 6630, 7440(-11)

Maximum policy size

The maximum size of the policy that can be loaded depends on the A10 device.

  • Thunder TPS
Model Number Total Maximum Policy Size Maximum IP entries in a Class-List Maximum Class-List counts
Thunder 5434
Thunder 6435
Thunder 6635
Thunder 14040
96 million 16 million 8
Thunder 4435 48 million 16 million 8
Thunder 3030S 24 million 8 million 8
Thunder 1040 Bypass 8 million 2 million 8
Thunder 1040
Thunder 840
2 million 2 million 8
  • Thunder ADC (Size of BW-List)
Model Number Total Maximum Policy Size
All 8 million

ThreatSTOP Reporting

  • ThreatSTOP reporting features are available for ADC only. They do not include DDOS events.

ThreatSTOP Threat Intelligence Proxy (TIP) virtual machine

The TIP is available as a virtual machine image for the following Operating Systems:

Distribution Version
Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 7.9
Ubuntu Linux 20.04

Hardware Requirements

Resource Setting
CPU 2+
Drive space 20GB

These requirements are implemented by the TIP OVA file.

  • The current version of the TIP is 1.48. You can retrieve the version of your TIP by running the following command on the virtual machine:
    $ tsadmin version
  • The current version of the A10 module is 3.15.
    # Ubuntu
    $ dpkg -l | grep ts-a10
    # RHEL
    $ rpm -qa | grep tscm-a10

Installation parameters for experienced users

If you have already created a device entry in the portal, and are familiar with the installation procedure, you can access the TSCM parameters below if you access this document from the Portal Device page.

Setting Value
Device ID Retrieved from the device settings page
Device Key Retrieved from the device settings page

Link Command:

$ tsadmin add --type auto --device_id=[Device ID] --auto_key=[Device Key]


To perform the installation, you will need the following:

  • a supported A10 device
  • a ThreatSTOP account
  • administrator access on your A10 device
  • the ThreatSTOP TIP image for your preferred version of Linux
  • a hypervisor such as VMWare ESXi or Microsoft Hyper-V

Network connectivity

To retrieve its configuration and policy, and to upload log data, the machine needs the following connectivity:

  • DNS over TCP - Policy service
    • IP Range:
    • Outbound TCP port 53 or 5353
  • DNS over TLS - Configuration service
    • Hostname:
    • IP Range:
    • Outbound TCP port 5353
  • HTTPs - Log service
    • Hostname:
    • IP range:
    • Outbound TCP port 443
  • NTP
    • Ubuntu images
    • Red Hat images
    • Outbound UDP port 123

The A10 device must be able to reach the TIP on the following ports:

  • SSH(SCP) TCP port 22
  • Syslog UDP port 514

System overview

The Threat Intelligence Proxy is a Linux machine appropriated for policy enforcement in the A10/ThreatSTOP environment. ThreatSTOP provides pre-installed virtual machines in Open Virtualization Archive (OVA) format.

The Threat Intelligence Proxy proxy downloads policies from the ThreatSTOP cloud to distribute to the A10 device(s) in the network. The policies that are downloaded are configured in the ThreatSTOP portal to block malicious traffic.

The configured policies are made available as ACOS class lists, which the A10 devices can then retrieve (via sftp) from the Threat Intelligence Proxy and use to update their active security policies. Additionally, logs of blocked connections can be forwarded from the A10 device to the Threat Intelligence Proxy via syslog and then uploaded to ThreatSTOP’s cloud to provide detailed reports.

The Threat Intelligence Proxy refreshes the class lists every 2 hours.

Configuration overview

Policies and targets

ThreatSTOP policies are assembled with targets, that is policy building blocks that group malicious IP addresses and domains related to types of threats. ThreatSTOP policies for A10 include two types of targets:

  • standard targets, which are configured on the ThreatSTOP Portal Standard targets can be selected to define a custom policy using the policy editor on the Portal. Additionally, a set of predefined policies is available. These predefined policies are described below. Custom policies allow you to select specific targets and exclude others, as well as adding your own set of IP addresses.

  • DDoS targets, which are configured on the ThreatSTOP TIP. The current list is available here.

It is possible to use either types of targets (standard or DDoS) for each A10 device, or to use both of them in the same class lists.

Device Settings

You will need the following settings to complete the installation.

Setting Value
Device ID Retrieved from the device settings page
Device Key Retrieved from the device settings page

To retrieve them from the Portal:

  • Login and click the link to the device page to reveal the list of devices
  • Click on the Device Info button for the device you want to configure

Installation steps

Integrating ThreatSTOP with your A10 device requires 3 steps:

  1. Creating a device entry on the ThreatSTOP portal
  2. Installing the Threat Intelligence Proxy (TIP) on your network
  3. Configure the A10 device to retrieve block lists and send logs for reporting

ThreatSTOP Portal

  • Login to the ThreatSTOP portal and add your device.
  • Click on the Devices menu and select + Add Device. The Device selection form will be displayed.
  • Select the manufacturer and model:
    • Device Type: IP Defense
    • Manufacturer: A10
    • Model: Thunder ADC or Thunder TPS
  • Next, select TSCM with Web Automation as the integration type. The Device settings form will be displayed.

Required settings

The device settings are:

  • Nickname: this is a mnemonic name used to identify the device. It can be set to any string (A-Z, 0-9, - and _). If you create multiple device entries, each entry must have a unique nickname. The Nickname will be used to identify the device on the TIP and in the Reporting user interface.

  • Policy: select a pre-defined policy or a customized policy. It must be an IP Defense Policy.

  • IP Type: Access to the ThreatSTOP services is controlled in part using an ACL allowing the device IP to connect. If your device has a static public IP address (the most common case), select static. If your device has a dynamic public IP address, the ThreatSTOP services can lookup the IP address using a DNS fully-qualified name (FQDN).

  • Public IP address: In static mode, this is the public IP address of the device. It is possible to configure multiple device entries with the same public IP address.

  • Domain name: In Dynamic mode, this is a DNS FQDN which must be kept up-to-date as an A record pointing to the device’s dynamic IP.

  • Internal IP address: This is the internal address of the device. The TIP will identify logs from the device using its internal IP address.

  • Note: An optional field to store a note of your choice about the device - location, identifiers, model…

  • DDOS Targets: the list of DDOS targets that will be configured in the Policy. Their list and description is available here. This feature requires an A10/DDOS subscription.

  • For TPS devices
    • Number of class list files: The maximum number of class list files to generate. Typically, this is set to 4. Changing this setting will require altering the class list configuration on the A10 device.

    • Class List File Size: The maximum number of entries in a class list file for your device. Please refer to the Maximum Policy Size table above.

  • For ADC devices
    • Number of BW List Files: vThunder ADC supports a single BW File.

    • BW File Size: The maximum number of entries in a BW file for your device. Please refer to the Maximum Policy Size table above.

  • Enable Log Upload: If enabled, the TIP will send logs received from the device to the ThreatSTOP reporting system. When disabled, logs for this device will not be available for reporting in the Portal.

Advanced settings

The TIP supports the following advanced settings, which cover uncommon network environments.

  • DNS Port: The TIP uses TCP Port 53 (outbound connections) to retrieve policy data. If this port is blocked or filtered (for example, networks using a DNS Application Layer Gateway), use this setting to switch to TCP Port 5353.

  • Syslog IP address: Typically, logs will sent over syslog by the device itself. If logs are sent by another IP address (for example, after being processed by a SIEM, or in High-Availability configurations), that IP address should be configured in this field.

  • Log file size: the TIP will upload logs after 15 minutes and when the log file size is reached. For systems under very heavy network traffic with many blocked connections, lowering this value will cause logs to be uploaded more often.

  • Enable policy updates: this setting can be used to temporarily disabled policy updates by the TIP. This is not recommended but can be used if device configuration changes needed to be suspended.

TIP virtual machine

  • After the virtual machine has booted, connect to it with an ssh client.
    • IP Address: the TIP will display its IP address on its console after booting (press enter to display the login prompt)
    • Username: threatstop
    • Default password: threatstop
  • Retrieve the device ID and Device Key from the Portal
  • Start the TIP configuration process by running the following command. The Device ID and Device Key are shown on the Device
$ tsadmin add --type auto --device_id=[Device ID] --auto_key=[Device Key]
  • The TIP configuration command will retrieve its configuration from the ThreatSTOP Portal

  • Once completed, it will prompt you for the SFTP password. Please set a password for the A10 device to access class lists on the TIP using sftp. The username is set to the device id, allowing multiple A10 devices to retrieve different class lists.

  • You can review the list of devices configured
    $ tsadmin list # Lists all devices
    $ tsadmin show <device name> # Display the settings of the selected device
  • Once configured, you can trigger the initial policy download with the following command. The device will also updates the class lists automatically every hour, at the top of the hour. Note that using a policy that includes all DDoS targets will require 10 to 15 minutes to update the update process.
    $ tsadmin update <device name>
  • After the update completes, the class lists files will be available via sftp. Each update will replace the files atomically. You can check that the files are available in /usr/share/a10/<device name>.

TIP Configuration changes

You can revisit the configuration of any device entry of the TIP via the ThreatSTOP Admin Portal. Edit the settings on the device form and they will be reflected on the TIP within 5 minutes.

Thunder TPS configuration (Command line)

With the Threat Intelligence Proxy (TIP) setup in the previous section, we can move onto to setting up the A10 device to retrieve the class lists and provide logs to the TIP. This is performed with the A10 device’s Command Line Interface.

Importing the Class Lists

Each class list will be imported via sftp using an automated, recurring import. The period option will import the updated list into the device and is defined in seconds. The recommended value is 86400 seconds (once a day), although faster updates are possible for the high end A10 devices.

Replace the sftp settings (IP address, username and password) with the values used during setup.

  • user: this is always the ThreatSTOP device ID. It can also be retrieved with the ‘tsadmin list’ command.
  • address: the IP address of the TIP
  • password: as entered during the TIP device configuration

For example:

[INFO ] :     address :
[INFO ] :        path : /
[INFO ] :        user : tdid_e16144c5
  • Login into the A10 device’s command line using an SSH client and enter the following commands:
import-periodic class-list threatstop0 use-mgmt-port sftp://<user>:<password>@<ip address>/block-000-nsp.txt period 86400
import-periodic class-list threatstop1 use-mgmt-port sftp://<user>:<password>@<ip address>/block-001-nsp.txt period 86400
import-periodic class-list threatstop2 use-mgmt-port sftp://<user>:<password>@<ip address>/block-002-nsp.txt period 86400
import-periodic class-list threatstop3 use-mgmt-port sftp://<user>:<password>@<ip address>/block-003-nsp.txt period 86400
  • Use the CLI command show class-list to confirm that the class-lists are properly downloaded.
#show class-list
Name                     Type                     IP       Subnet   DNS      String   Location
threatstop0              [ipv4]                   751848   0        0        0        file
threatstop1              [ipv4]                   248152   0        0        0        file
threatstop2              []                       0        0        0        0        file
threatstop3              []                       0        0        0        0        file
Total: 4.

Building the policy

Next, create a source based policy:

ddos src-based-policy block
  policy-class-list threatstop0
  policy-class-list threatstop1
  policy-class-list threatstop2
  policy-class-list threatstop3

Binding the policy

Finally, bind the policy to the DDoS protected object (e.g. DDoS dst zone)

ddos dst zone threatstop
  port <port> <protocol>
    src-based-policy block
      policy-class-list threatstop0
      policy-class-list threatstop1
      policy-class-list threatstop2
      policy-class-list threatstop3

Setup log export via syslog

logging host <TIP IP address> use-mgmt-port port 514

Thunder TPS configuration (Web GUI)

Importing the Class List from the TIP

  • Navigate to TPS > Templates > General > Class List and click Import

Building the policy

  • Navigate to TPS > Templates > General > Source Based Policy, and click Create

Binding the policy on the DDOS Zone

  • Navigate to TPS > Protected Objects > Zones, then click Create.
  • Enter the Zone name and IP address accordingly.
  • Move to the Service Port tab and apply policies with actions (e.g. Deny) under the service port (e.g. Port 80 HTTP)

Thunder ADC Configuration (CLI)

The basic configuration steps for Thunder ADC are same as TPS described above. However, Thunder ADC uses a BW-List instead of Class-List to import the bock IP list.

Import the IP list as BW-List

  • Login into the A10 device’s command line using an SSH client and enter the following commands:
    import-periodic bw-list threatstop0 use-mgmt-port sftp://<user>:<password>@<ip address>/block-000-nsp.txt period 86400

Build a template

  • Enter the following commands to build a template
    slb template policy bl1
    bw-list name threatstop0
    bw-list id 0 reset logging

Bind with Virtual Service (VIP)

  • Finally, bind the policy to the virtual service (VIP):
    slb virtual-server vs1 <Virtual IP>
    port 80 tcp
      service-group sg1
      template policy bl1

Thunder ADC Configuration (Web GUI)

The basic configuration steps for Thunder ADC are same as TPS described above. However, Thunder ADC uses a BW-List instead of Class-List to import the bock IP list.

Import the IP list as BW-List

  • Navigate to ADC > BW-Lists and click Create.

Build a template

  • Navigate to ADC > BW-Lists and click Create.

Bind with Virtual Service (VIP)

  • Navigate to ADC > Virtual Services and select the policy on the Template Policy column

Support for multiple devices

Setting up multiple devices is done by repeated the setup steps.

  • You can reuse an existing policy or define a new one in the ThreatSTOP Portal
  • Create a new device entry in the ThreatSTOP Portal
  • Follow the TIP Device configuration steps
  • Configure the additional A10 devices to retrieve and apply the class lists files

Policy updates for each devices are processed serially.

Other operations

Current configuration

To view the current settings on the TSCM, run

$ tsadmin show <device name>

Configuration changes

  • After the initial configuration is completed, settings can be edited on the Admin Portal and will be reflected on the device within 5 minutes, including Policy configuration changes.

  • To change the credentials of the SFTP account, run tsadmin configure <device name> on the TIP.

Error reporting

The TIP update process wil report failures such as:

  • failure to download the policy
  • failure to apply the policy on the ASA
  • failure to connect to the log upload service

Failures are reported on the Device List page of the portal.

Software updates

To update the TIP and retrieve new versions of the ThreatSTOP software, login as threatstop and run the following command:

# Ubuntu
$ sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get -y dist-upgrade
# Red Hat RHEL
$ sudo yum update

Uninstallation procedure

Thunder TPS

  • Please make sure to unbind the class lists from the src-based-policy configuration before removing the class lists.

  • To remove the ThreatSTOP class lists from the Thunder TPS device, issue the following commands on the A10 device

    no import-periodic class-list threatstop0
    no class-list threatstop0
    no import-periodic class-list threatstop1
    no class-list threatstop1
    no import-periodic class-list threatstop2
    no class-list threatstop2
    no import-periodic class-list threatstop3
    no class-list threatstop3

Thunder ADC

  • Please make sure to unbind the BW-List from the Virtual Server/VIP configuration before removing the lists

  • To remove the ThreatSTOP class lists from the Thunder ADC device, issue the following commands on the A10 device

    no import-periodic bw-list threatstop0
    delete bw-list threatstop0

TIP Configuration

From this point on, the A10 device will not be updated but the TIP will continue to download the policy data.

  • On the TIP, remove the device entry:
    $ tsadmin remove <device name>
  • Finally, delete the device entry on the Portal. Note that report data associated with the device will become inaccessible.


If the tsadmin commands returns one of the following error messages:

  • Unable to retrieve configuration from the portal for this device
  • Unable to retrieve policy
  • Unable to retrieve DDOS target

validate the following:

  • NTP status (timedatectl status)
  • Connectivity to both DNS services listed above

If 15 minutes have elapsed since the device was created and the tsadmin command continues to fail, please contact ThreatSTOP support.

Additional Information

DDoS Targets and predefined policies

The list of available DDoS targets and predefined policies is available here.

Version History

TSCM A10 module Changelog
1.48 3.15 Images built with Ubuntu 20.04 and RHEL 7.9
1.40 3.12 Improve installation prompts without DDOS support enabled
1.37 3.11 Added network configuration feature and additional details during policy download
1.35 3.10 Added Web automation features
1.27 3.00 Added TSCM integration.
Added ability to provide different policies to multiple devices