Configure OCSP Stapling


This document provides instructions on how to enable Online Certificate Status Protocol (OCSP) stapling for your certificates. OCSP stapling provides improved information on the revocation status and enhances efficiency of bandwidth management. To learn more about support for OCSP stapling, see OCSP Stapling.

Using the instructions provided in this guide, you can request and obtain an OCSP must-staple certificate from a Certificate Authority (CA) and apply it in an F5® Distributed Cloud Services load balancer.


Generate Certificate with OCSP Must-Staple Extension

Enabling OCSP stapling requires you to first obtain a certificate with OCSP must-staple extension from a CA.

Note: Self-signed certificates are not supported for OCSP stapling.

Perform the following to obtain a CA-signed certificate with OCSP must-staple extension:

Step 1: Create a TLS configuration file with the CN and DNS entries pointing to your CA domain name.

This example shows the sample configuration file tls_config with as the sample domain name:

distinguished_name = req_distinguished_name
req_extensions = v3_req
prompt = no
CN =
keyUsage = keyEncipherment, digitalSignature
extendedKeyUsage = serverAuth
subjectAltName = @alt_names
tlsfeature = status_request
DNS.1 =
Step 2: Create a Certificate Signing Request (CSR) with the OCSP Must-Staple extension.

This example shows a sample CSR:

          openssl req -new -out out.csr -newkey rsa:2048 -nodes -sha256 -keyout out.key -config tls_config
Step 3: Request and obtain a certificate from the CA.

This example shows a sample request from the Let's Encrypt CA:

          sudo certbot certonly --register-unsafely-without-email --manual --preferred-challenges dns --must-staple --csr out.csr -d
Step 4: Verify that the certificate is enabled with OCSP support.
  • Check for the method from the command line:
          openssl x509 -in <cert-name>.crt -noout -text
  • Import and view the certificate from a browser:
Figure: OCSP Enabled CA Signed Certificate

Apply Certificate in Load Balancer Configuration

Apply the certificate created in the section above to the configuration of the load balancer.

Step 1: Navigate to load balancer to edit.
  • In Console, select Multi-Cloud App Connect.

  • Navigate to Manage > Load Balancers > HTTP Load Balancers.

  • Find your load balancer and then select ... > Manage Configuration.

  • Select Edit Configuration.

Step 2: Configure certificate information.
  • In the Domains and LB Type section, perform the following:

    • From the Load Balancer Type menu, select HTTPS with Custom Certificate.

    • From the TLS Configuration menu, select Inline Certificate (legacy).

    • Click Configure.

    • Click Add Item.

    • In the Certificate box, click Import from File.

    • In the popup window, click Upload File to select the certificate file. Then click Import.

    • Optionally, enter a description for this certificate file.

    • From the OCSP Stapling choice menu, select Fetch with F5XC default settings or Use hash algorithms in custom order. If you chose a hash algorithm, select it from the Hash Algorithms menu.

    • Click Apply to save OCSP configuration.

    • Click Apply to save TLS parameters configuration.

Step 3: Save load balancer configuration.

Click Save and Exit.


API References