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Java - Changing Java Security Settings to Allow UW-Madison Applications

This document outlines the process of configuring Java security settings to use Java-based UW-Madison applications. These changes became necessary starting with the Java 7 update 51 release.


When using Java 7 update 51 or later, you may need to change some Java security settings to allow certain UW-Madison applications to run.

This document will walk you through the steps of two commonly needed changes:

  1. Changing the Java security level
  2. Adding URLs to the Java Security Exception Site List


When attempting to run some UW-Madison applications, you get error messages similar to the following:

Example of Java security error with message "Application Blocked by Java Security"

Example of Java security error with message "General Exception"

Example of Java security error with message "Java applications are blocked by your security settings."


  1. Open the Java Control Panel.
    • Windows (Microsoft)

      1. Open the Start menu by selecting the Windows icon in the corner of the screen or by pressing the Windows key on your keyboard.
      2. Type "Configure Java" and select the Configure Java application from the search results to launch the Java Control Panel.

        Windows menu showing Configure Java application highlighted with red rectangle
    • macOS (Apple)

      1. Select the Apple icon in the macOS menu bar (often in the top left corner).
      2. Select System Settings or System Preferences (depending on your computer's version of macOS).
      3. Select the Java option.

        macOS System Settings with Java option highlighted with red rectangle

    Note: If you cannot find the Configure Java application, you might not have Java installed on your computer. You may install Java from Java's website. You might need to work with your local IT team to install Java if you do not have administrator access to your computer.

  2. In the Java Control Panel, select the Security tab.

  3. If the security level setting is set to Very High, select the High option instead.

    Java Control Panel with "High" setting selected and highlighted with red rectangle

  4. Select the Edit Site List... button.

    Java Control Panel with Edit Site List button highlighted with red rectangle

  5. In the Exception Site List window, select the Add button.

    Java Security Exceptions Site List window with Add button highlighted with red rectangle

  6. Enter the application's URL.

    Java Security Exceptions Site List with UW-Madison Java application URL entered

    UW-Madison Java application URLs

    The URL for many UW-Madison Java applications is:

    Refer to Java - Compatible Versions for UW Services for information on UW-Madison Java applications.

  7. Select the OK button in the Exception Site List window.

  8. Select the OK button in the Java Control Panel.

Even after changing these Java security settings, you may still receive a Security Warning pop-up when you attempt to open a UW-Madison Java application. Make sure the URL listed after Locations is one that you recognize, then it is safe to run the application. If there is an option to "always trust" or "don't ask again", you may select that option to avoid future warnings.

Java Security Warning with message "Do you want to run this application?" and UW-Madison application URL highlighted

Additional configuration for Mac computers

The Mac operating system macOS has strict controls for which applications will run. As a result, you might need to do additional configuration to allow UW-Madison Java applications to run.

  1. If you receive an error saying a UW-Madison Java application cannot be opened because it is from an unidentified developer, you will need to give permission for macOS to open it.

    Screenshot of macOS error message preventing a UW-Madison Java application from opening due to being from an unidentified developer

  2. Open System Settings and navigate to the Privacy & Security section. Scroll to the Security section and select the Open Anyway button to open frmservlet.jnlp.

    Screenshot of macOS System Settings with arrows pointing to the Privacy & Security section and to the Open Anyway button

  3. Select Open to confirm opening the UW-Madison Java application.

    Screenshot of confirmation message from macOS to open the UW-Madison Java application

See Also:

Keywords:jems chris hr Java 7 update 51 55 security level exception list 7u51 7u55 blocked self-signed application running cbs common business systems webnow imagenow   Doc ID:124397
Owner:Colin S.Group:HR Communities of Practice
Created:2023-02-27 16:28 CDTUpdated:2023-03-15 16:07 CDT
Sites:DoIT Help Desk, HR Communities of Practice
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