Java applets wont load in Safari and constantly crash in Firefox

I have to use Java Applets to work from home. I normally use Firefox as my browser but since the last Java update Forefox keeps crashing. I have tried Safari too and it wont load the applets at all. I am desperate to get some work done but I can't get into my work files that are stored on my office's servers.
I have seen lots of discussion about enabling java etc. in my browser and all of that has been done.
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Make sure your Java system is updated on both sides (home and work computers).
As an alternative, you might look into a non-Java VPN solution. I use RealVNC (free for up to 5 computers) to work from home on my Macs and connetc to WinXP and Win7 systems at work. It works beautifully and I can connect to all 4 work systems simultaniously! The only thing the free version won't do is print remotely... so I print to PDF in my Dropbox and print that at home.
For VPN, I use a Cisco RV042 4 port router (about $90 at BestBuy) and connect via the built in OS X VPN in the Network Preferences panel. It literally took less than 5 minutes to set up. Sweet, simple, minimal cost and setup, and I can work from the house 24/7 if needed.