Create an application gateway with web application firewall by using the portal

Learn how to create an web application firewall enabled application gateway.

The web application firewall (WAF) in Azure Application Gateway protects web applications from common web-based attacks like SQL injection, cross-site scripting attacks, and session hijacks. Web application protects against many of the OWASP top 10 common web vulnerabilities.


In this article there are two scenarios:

In the first scenario, you learn to create an application gateway with web application firewall

In the second scenario, you learn to add web application firewall to an existing application gateway.

Scenario example


Additional configuration of the application gateway, including custom health probes, backend pool addresses, and additional rules are configured after the application gateway is configured and not during initial deployment.

Before you begin

Azure Application Gateway requires its own subnet. When creating a virtual network, ensure that you leave enough address space to have multiple subnets. Once you deploy an application gateway to a subnet, only additional application gateways are able to be added to the subnet.

Add web application firewall to an existing application gateway

This example updates an existing application gateway to support web application firewall in prevention mode.

  1. In the Azure portal Favorites pane, click All resources. Click the existing Application Gateway in the All resources blade. If the subscription you selected already has several resources in it, you can enter the name in the Filter by nameā€¦ box to easily access the DNS zone.

    Creating Application Gateway

  2. Click Web application firewall and update the application gateway settings. When complete click Save

    The settings to update an existing application gateway to support web application firewall are:

    Setting Value Details
    Upgrade to WAF Tier Checked This sets the tier of the application gateway to the WAF tier.
    Firewall status Enabled Enabled
    Firewall mode Prevention This setting is how web application firewall deals with malicious traffic. Detection mode only logs the events, where Prevention mode logs the events and stops the malicious traffic.
    Rule set 3.0 This setting determines the core rule set that is used to protect the backend pool members.
    Configure disabled rules varies To prevent possible false positives, this setting allows you to disable certain rules and rule groups.

    When upgrading an existing application gateway to the WAF SKU, the SKU size changes to medium. This can be reconfigured after configuration is complete.

    blade showing basic settings


    To view web application firewall logs, diagnostics must be enabled and ApplicationGatewayFirewallLog selected. An instance count of 1 can be chosen for testing purposes. It is important to know that any instance count under two instances is not covered by the SLA and are therefore not recommended. Small gateways are not available when using web application firewall.

Create an application gateway with web application firewall

This scenario will:

  • Create a medium web application firewall application gateway with two instances.
  • Create a virtual network named AdatumAppGatewayVNET with a reserved CIDR block of
  • Create a subnet called Appgatewaysubnet that uses as its CIDR block.
  • Configure a certificate for SSL offload.
  1. Log in to the Azure portal. If you don't already have an account, you can sign up for a free one-month trial
  2. In the Favorites pane of the portal, click New
  3. In the New blade, click Networking. In the Networking blade, click Application Gateway, as shown in the following image:
  4. Navigate to the Azure portal, click New > Networking > Application Gateway

    Creating Application Gateway

  5. In the Basics blade that appears, eneter the following values, then click OK:

    Setting Value Details
    Name AdatumAppGateway The name of the application gateway
    Tier WAF Available values are Standard and WAF. Visit web application firewall to learn more about WAF.
    SKU Size Medium Choices when choosing Standard tier are Small, Medium and Large. When choosing WAF tier, options are Medium and Large only.
    Instance count 2 Number of instances of the application gateway for high availability. Instance counts of 1 should only be used for testing purposes.
    Subscription [Your subscription] Select a subscription to create the application gateway in.
    Resource group Create new: AdatumAppGatewayRG Create a resource group. The resource group name must be unique within the subscription you selected. To learn more about resource groups, read the Resource Manager overview article.
    Location West US

    blade showing basic settings

  6. In the Settings blade that appears under Virtual network, click Choose a virtual network. This will open enter the Choose virtual network blade. Click Create new to open the Create virtual network blade.

    choose a virtual network

  7. On the Create virtual network blade enter the following values, then click OK. This will close the Create virtual network and Choose virtual network blades. This will also populate the Subnet field on the Settings blade with the subnet chosen.

    Setting Value Details
    Name AdatumAppGatewayVNET Name of the application gateway
    Address Space This is the address space for the virtual network
    Subnet name AppGatewaySubnet Name of the subnet for the application gateway
    Subnet address range This subnet allows more additional subnets in the virtual network for backend pool members
  8. On the Settings blade under Frontend IP configuration choose Public as the IP address type

  9. On the Settings blade under Public IP address click Choose a public IP address, this opens the Choose public IP address blade, click Create new.

    choose public ip

  10. On the Create public IP address blade, accept the default value and click OK. This will close the Choose public IP address blade, the Create public IP address blade, and populate Public IP address with the public IP address chosen.

  11. On the Settings blade under Listener configuration click HTTP under Protocol. To use https, a certificate is required. The private key of the certificate is needed so a .pfx export of the certificate needs to be provided and the password for the file.

  12. Configure the WAF specific settings.

    Setting Value Details
    Firewall status Enabled This setting turns WAF on or off.
    Firewall mode Prevention his setting determines the actions WAF takes on malicious traffic. If Detection is chosen, traffic is only logged. If Prevention is chosen, traffic is logged and stopped with a 403 Unauthorized response.
  13. Review the Summary page and click OK. Now the application gateway is queued up and created.

  14. Once the application gateway has been created, navigate to it in the portal to continue configuration of the application gateway.

    Application Gateway resource view

These steps create a basic application gateway with default settings for the listener, backend pool, backend http settings, and rules. You can modify these settings to suit your deployment once the provisioning is successful


Application gateways created with the basic web application firewall configuration are configured with CRS 3.0 for protections.

Next steps

Learn how to configure diagnostic logging, to log the events that are detected or prevented with web application firewall by visiting Application Gateway Diagnostics

Learn how to create custom health probes by visiting Create a custom health probe

Learn how to configure SSL Offloading and take the costly SSL decryption off your web servers by visiting Configure SSL Offload