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Updated on: 17 July 2020

VMware AppDefense Plug-In 2.3.2 | Released 18 June 2020 | Build 16380301

What's in the Release Notes

What's New In AppDefense Plug-In

Release Overview


This release introduces a couple of closed beta programs for key upcoming features and addresses important bugs.

Enhanced Integrity (Beta)

AppDefense announces a beta release of a key security feature - Enhanced Integrity. Enhanced Integrity will improve attack monitoring by leveraging VMware hypervisor's security features. This will be available as an option to enable along with the previously supported Guest Integrity capability. You can easily switch between the two integrity modes. This requires ESXi 7.0 or later. To participate in this beta program, please contact the VMware AppDefense support team.

Encryption (Beta)

AppDefense provides an updated beta of the Encryption feature. Encryption will provide the encryption details primarily the TLS visibility of the end-to-end connection. You can create policies to accept/reject connection based on the encryption setting. Also, you can remediate a connection deemed weaker by the encryption policy without requiring to update the application. To participate in this beta program, please contact the VMware AppDefense support team.

Password Management

AppDefense provides password management in the AppDefense Manager. You can easily get notified about the expiry time-frame and change the password using AppDefense Manager.  

Support for Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.8, 8.0, and 8.2

AppDefense expands the Linux Guest Operating System support to include Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.8, 8.0, 8.2. 

Exporting Vulnerability Report

AppDefense allows you to export vulnerability data from your environment in CSV format.

Discontinued Regular Upgrade

AppDefense had released Fail-Safe upgrade feature in the Plug-In 2.2.1. Going forward, Fail-Safe upgrade will be the default method to upgrade the appliance. Previously supported regular upgrade using vCenter Server Appliance Management Interface (VAMI) will be discontinued. If you are using AppDefense Plug-In 2.2.0 or earlier, you can use the regular upgrade method to upgrade to 2.2.1 or 2.3.1 and then use the Fail-Safe upgrade option to upgrade to 2.3.2.

For details on how to upgrade to 2.3.2, refer to Upgrade To 2.3.1 or Later With Fail-Safe Upgrade Compatibility.


This release addresses important bugs related to:

  • Vulnerability Assessment for Windows OS
  • Re-bootless Upgrades
  • Password Expiry


This release delivers a major update to AppDefense in vCenter. Notably, this release includes OS Integrity features, Behavior Analysis functionality, and an entire suite of vulnerability assessment capabilities. In particular, the vulnerability capabilities are notable because they are available in vCenter only (not SaaS) and they are built specifically for the vAdmin. 

Vulnerability Enumeration

AppDefense announces a full suite of capabilities around vulnerability assessment. AppDefense enumerates vulnerabilities on vSphere components, Operating Systems, as well as the applications running on top. As processes execute, AppDefense determines the vulnerabilities associated with that software. This feature requires outbound internet access.

Vulnerability Prioritization

In addition to enumerating the vulnerabilities in your environment, AppDefense prioritizes every vulnerability using real-time threat information collected from sensors around the world. AppDefense ingests this feed from Kenna Security, the leader in vulnerability prioritization, to determine the overall risk for your environment.

OS Integrity

AppDefense delivers OS Integrity and Module Integrity features to vCenter. On by default, these features prevent against major technique categories in the MITRE ATT&CK Framework, including persistence and defense evasion.

Behavior Analysis

AppDefense announces the ability to analyze network behavior on-premise. With assistance from the App Verification Cloud, AppDefense gathers information about the network activity of known processes and determines if the behavior is trusted. This feature requires outbound internet access but not a full SaaS subscription.

Enriched Dashboard

With this release, the AppDefense Plugin in vCenter is improved to include OS Integrity, Behavior Analysis, and Critical Vulnerabilities. These additional "front page" widgets provide the most important information about risk in your environment in a simple, easily consumable format. Use this page as a jumping-off point to visibility and risk information about specific virtual machines. 

Process Monitoring for Unclassified Machines

The VM Monitor view in vCenter now includes process information for all processes, including those without network activity. This expands the Guest Monitoring capability which previously only included those processes with network connections. 

Globalization Support

The AppDefense Plugin now supports 7 languages (Japanese, French, German, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Spanish, Korean)


With this release, newly installed or upgraded guest module components are now supported on virtual machines with Hardware version greater than 13.

This release improves Linux process identification for short-lived network connections.

This release provides important security fixes related to vulnerabilities in Linux Kernel identified by CVE-2019-11477 and CVE-2019-11478. For more information on these issues please see VMSA-2019-0010 (

Guest module version adds support for additional Linux OS versions as documented in the System Requirements for AppDefense.

The guest modules of relevant Linux OS's can be upgraded to this version by following these instructions.


This release provides additional visibility within the AppDefense Appliance and improves the process of setting connectivity status to the AppDefense Manager. 

Connectivity Status 

The Plug-In now supports only two connectivity modes: SaaS and non-SaaS. The workflow for selecting SaaS connectivity mode has been simplified to allow checkbox selection for enabled/disabled. There is also a text field to provide or alter the AppDefense Manager details from the default value. 

Additionally, the Appliance UI has been enhanced to show connectivity status between itself and the AppDefense Manager. This eliminates the need to navigate outside of the Appliance in order to view this information. 

Available Upgrades 

The Appliance UI now displays information about all available versions and components of AppDefense that can be upgraded to after an upgrade bundle has been uploaded.

This release provides an improved error message on the UI when user incorrectly configures SSO from the AppDefense Appliance > Registration  tab.


The 2.1.1 is a bug-fix release addressing specific customer bugs related to upgrade. 


With the 2.1.0 release, AppDefense focuses on scale and performance improvements in the AppDefense Plug-in and does not include new feature updates for the Platinum Edition.


Release Overview

With this release, AppDefense announces General Availability of the AppDefense Plug-in for Platinum Edition. The AppDefense Plugin integrates application security capabilities directly in the vSphere Client. It provides high-level security metrics about your environment, deep visibility into the behavior of individual VMs, and end-to-end lifecycle management for AppDefense components. The AppDefense plug-in is supported only in the HTML5 version of the vSphere Client.

Plugin Dashboard

The Plugin Dashboard delivers aggregated security metrics, visibility, and health statistics for applications and workloads running on vSphere. Users can drill into individual behaviors and reputation scores, leading to deeper visibility in the VM Monitor page. This high-level summary provides focused, at-a-glance statistics and a starting place for additional discovery. 

Lifecycle Management

AppDefense announces one-click, integrated installation and upgrade workflows for AppDefense directly within vCenter. Users can now get a full report of their protection status, deploy AppDefense modules into entire clusters with a single click, and schedule regular upgrades, all while leveraging familiar workflows. Managing AppDefense components in this way greatly increases ease of operation for IT admins.  

VM Monitoring

This release delivers a new virtual machine monitor tab that provides VM-specific behavior monitoring for visibility, security assessment, and troubleshooting directly within vCenter. Integrating this capability in vCenter enables IT admins to play pivotal roles in the protection of their organizations’ apps and data.

Connectivity Modes

The AppDefense Plugin can operate in three different connectivity modes: Online, Offline, and SaaS. Offline mode requires no internet connectivity and provides a basic visibility-only view of your environment. Online mode adds security feeds from the AppDefense Service. SaaS mode (recommended) provides the full AppDefense feature set. Select the connectivity mode that meets your compliance requirements. For more information, go to AppDefense Appliance Connectivity Modes.


Product Lifecycle Matrix

For information about AppDefense and other VMware products that must be upgraded soon, please consult the VMware Lifecycle Product Matrix.

Also, verify the upgrade path provided under the VMware Product Interoperability Matrices.

Resolved Issues

  • When the AppDefense agent is installed via the vCenter Plugin, vMotion does not work until the VM is power cycled.

    In 2.3, AppDefense introduced the option to delay power cycling. We later found an issue that delaying the power cycle causes issues with vMotion. When installing AppDefense for 2.3.1, VMs are power cycled (Power Off or Guest OS Shutdown, followed by Power On). This issue is resolved in 2.3.2.

Known Issues

  • Initiated from the vCenter Plugin, upgrade fails from 2.3 to 2.3.1 or 2.3.2 when using AppDefense Appliance as the default upgrade source.

    When the AppDefense Appliance is used as the Download Source for upgrading in-guest bits from 2.3 to 2.3.1 or 2.3.2, the upgrade fails. Note: the Appliance is the default download configuration. VMware Tools 11.0.5 and 11.0.6 includes AppDefense 2.3. If the Virtual Machine has VMware Tools 11.0.5 or 11.0.6, the AppDefense install will deploy AppDefense 2.3.  

    Two Options: 

    1) If you would like to still use the vCenter Plugin to upgrade your VMs from 2.3 to 2.3.1 or 2.3.2, the guest VMs need to have access to the internet. Then, you just need to change the download source (on the Appliance UI) so that the new guest module is downloaded directly from the cloud, as opposed to the Appliance. Once you have changed the upgrade source, you can upgrade your module like normal (from the Plugin or from the SaaS console).
    2) If you don't want to use the vCenter Plugin or if the guest VMs don't have access to the internet, you can upgrade the guest module manually with the published MSI. Contact customer success if you would like help in this regard. 

    Steps for option1: If guest VM's have internet connectivity.
      I) Trigger upgrade using cloud:
         1. Login to Appliance UI.
         2. In the Dashboard section select ApplianceUpgrade.
         3. Click the edit option, and select from cloud under VM Upgrade Source.
         4. Save configuration and trigger the upgrade.
      II) For SaaS enabled customers, follow steps:

    Steps for Option 2: If guest VM's do not have internet connectivity.
      I) Download and manually install using these steps:
      II) Download and manually install using appliance hosted MSI.
         1. On the guest VM, open a browser.
         2. Go to the URL: https://{appliance_ip}/download/guest/
         3. URL might fail to open with "connection not private" or similar error message, select proceed/continue with download option.
         4. Run/execute the MSI manually to install.

  • Log In to AppDefense Appliance With Certificate does not work.

    You may not be able to log in to AppDefense Appliance with certificate.

    This issue will be fixed in next release.

  • Upgrading VMware Tools from earlier versions than 10.3.2 to 11.x will require a reboot. If not rebooted after upgrade to 11.x, AppDefense installation will fail.

    When the VMware Tools from earlier versions than 10.3.2  on a Guest virtual machine is upgraded to 11.x, reboot of the Guest virtual machine is required. If you try to install AppDefense without reboot, it will fail. This behavior is not observed if the VMware Tools version on the Guest virtual machine was 10.3.2 or above prior to an upgrade to 11.x

    Reboot the Guest virtual machine after upgrading the VMware Tools from earlier versions than 10.3.2 to 11.x. After reboot, you can successfully install AppDefense.

  • Two AppDefense plugin menu entries in the vCenter console after upgrading AppDefense for certain configurations

    When the AppDefense plugin versions or earlier is upgraded to the higher version, this can result in two AppDefense plugin menu entries in the vCenter Server console. This will happen only with the vCenter Server versions 7.0 or earlier.

    Prior to upgrading the AppDefense plugin, unregister the plugin from vCenter Server. After the upgrade, register the plugin with the vCenter Server. If you accidentally upgrade without unregistering the plugin, you will see two AppDefense plugin menus. This can be resolved by simply restarting the VMware vSphere Client service from the vCenter Appliance. 

  • After upgrading AppDefense to, you see an error "ERROR: Unable to connect Appliance" on the vSphere console.

    To resolve this issue, first, unregister the plugin, then restart VMware vSphere Client service from the vCenter Appliance, and then register the plugin with vCenter Server again from the Appliance UI. 

    After reregistration, if you see errors on the host module as Unsupported or Not installed, you must perform Config Sync for that host from AppDefense Manager as follows.

    • Log in to AppDefense Manager
    • Click Inventory, and then click the Hosts tab.
    • Click the required host, and then click Config Sync. This action sync up the hosts with the new appliance configuration. After the sync is complete, the status of the host becomes Active.