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Thread: Serious intel cpu flaw

  1. #1
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    Default Serious intel cpu flaw

    Hello gentlemen, ladies.

    After a thread about decreasing performance in Run8 a discussion started between us and it has been noted that intel chips as well as a few select others have very serious security flaws in the hardware.

    At this point AMD are pretty much safe except for a couple of chips and under a Linux os only.
    This includes all macs.

    The security flaws are.
    Meltdown. The most serious and all intel and a few ARM chips are affected. AMD are immune.
    Spectre 1. All intel chips and some ARM, AMD bulldozer only running Linux.
    Spectre 2 all intel chips.

    Get on to google and do some reading on this but we warned there's a lot of marketing and fud being thrown around at the moment. It is very serious for cpu manufacturers and the spin machines are working overtime.


    At this point in time if you're building a new machine AMD (only Ryzen) is really the only safe option.
    It could take a few years to fix i.e a complete cpu redesign.

    Mikeebb knows far more about this than I do.

  2. #2
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    Thanks, but it's mainly reading between the lines of the FUD and flacksmanship. Your summary is good.

    Latest news is that nVidia has issued patches for its graphics cards for Spectre - so it's not just CPUs any more. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-c...-idUSKBN1EZ1E9 and https://www.engadget.com/2018/01/10/...ectre-patches/

    MS says that its patches will slow down older (meaning 2015/Haswell and earlier Intel) considerably. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-c...-idUSKBN1EY17X MS' patches also managed to "brick" some old (not just "older") systems based on AMD chips - patch has been blocked from further installation on them while MS looks for a fix. The older systems can be brought back by reinstalling Windows or restoring from an image taken before the issue came up.

    And finally - it might get a little more expensive to go AMD in a new computer. Cloud service providers are starting to look at Intel alternatives. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-c...-idUSKBN1EZ1A4 It's not known yet whether that interest will translate into real purchasing activity, but if AMD's production gets hammered by demand (as with some GPUs used in bitcoin mining) the prices will go up.

  3. #3
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    Here is the link for anyone who want to check out your CPU if they are safe or not.


    https://www.ashampoo.com/uk/eur/lpa/...wn-cpu-checker


    I did check to see if my CPU Processor are safe with Spectre and Meltdown.

    John

  4. #4
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    Thanks mike.

    Any idea about AMD Gpu's?

    From a bit more reading I've been doing the patches are more likely to have a performance deficit on gaming that is online and hammers the disk i/o.
    Appears cloud based servers will be hardest hit. I guess that will entail any cloud based gaming.

    Pete.
    Last edited by Aussie_FX; 01-10-2018 at 09:26 PM.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aussie_FX View Post
    Thanks mike.

    Any idea about AMD Gpu's?

    From a bit more reading I've been doing the patches are more likely to have a performance deficit on gaming that is online and hammers the disk i/o.
    Appears cloud based servers will be hardest hit. I guess that will entail any cloud based gaming.

    Pete.
    Just going by the disclosures. AMD hasn't said anything about their GPUs, so nobody knows. nVidia didn't say anything until the patches were shipping.

  6. #6
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    Corporate lawyers at work. Intel's public statements so far have been vague and not very informative, i.e. lots of "could", "might", "depending on your workload", etc. Dell began releasing new BIOS updates for its latest computers, and I got to spend an evening with update work, at work. Dell's server vulnerability-patch site says "If you don't see your system, check again later." The desktop site has no such comforting phrases about older computers, i.e. those more than 3 years old, which makes me nervous. Hopefully they're working down the list.
    Last edited by ftldave; 01-11-2018 at 09:19 PM. Reason: add txt
    - FTLDave

    "Research is what I'm doing when I don't know what I'm doing." - Wernher von Braun

  7. #7
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    Here's a good article to read:

    Computerworld: Microsoft releases mess of patches, warnings about slowdowns

    https://www.computerworld.com/articl...s-crucial.html



    From what I have been reading, there is a colossal “sky is falling” routine going on right now, and all the PR is filled with Technical Jargon that most people don't understand, and it is doing nothing, but getting people scared...

    Yes, there is a problem with Computer Processors, but it seems that there really isn't much of anything out there... YET... to be worried about.

    Microsoft (and other companies) have be shoving patches out as fast as they can make them, to make consumers feel better, but in the end all they are doing is either slowing down PCs, or causing booting problems with computers and making them expensive paper weights...

    Due to so many problems, Microsoft has PULLED many of it patches from their updates catalog...

    (PLEASE READ THE ARTICLE... There is a link to a MICROSOFT HELP SOLUTION to manually edit the Resistry to help solve a problem with Office Documents....)



    It seems the best things that we all can do right now is...

    HOLD OFF ON PROCESSOR & BIOS UPDATE/PATCHES... at least until companies have more time to work on them and how to fix them correctly... and more of the various processors in use, have patches for them....

    Focus on making sure your Anti-Virus program is constantly up to date, and that you are running the latest versions of your favorite web-browsers and keep them updated and patched. Other software that you use should be updated as well...

    (If you can keep the problems from even getting to your computer, then it can't get to your computer processor.)

    Then keep informed on the subject, and sooner or later, you will know when it will be a safe to update your processors & BIOS.
    Yardmaster of the Great American Moose Paint Shops.
    a Moose Interchange Rail Company division.
    http://mjrmstsrepaints.proboards.com
    TTFN!

  8. #8
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    This. Very Much This. Thanks!

    TL;DR: IMO, unless you're running servers or use the cloud (Amazon & Azure services for instance), just make sure your browser (and probably various apps) are updated to restrict javascript access to the bug (yes, it's a bug even though Intel tries to say it's not - it's a design issue not a manufacturing error), and that you turn off or restrict remote access to your computer. For home users, that should block the best access routes for exploits. And keep your antivirus up to date because this bug by itself just discloses information - it requires something else (a virus or other malware) to use it for something. If the bad guys can't get access to the bug, it's relatively meaningless.

    Rant: For home users and even many client-level business users, the most important thing is to update your browsers. They are the main gateway between your computer, and the internet where all the bad guys live. All major browsers have been updated or will be shortly to place limits on what javascript can do to access these CPU issues - get the updates (or specifically request that IT do them), whether or not the operating system and cpu has or gets updates. Without javascript access, an attacker has to be logged in to your computer in some way (so check to see if remote access is enabled and, if possible, disable it). If an attacker can't use javascript or get into your computer, you're pretty safe (assuming decent internet hygiene).

    As for the Windows patches, yes, MS had some problems. They have pulled back patches that made some old AMD-based computers unbootable. But if you use Win10 you'll eventually get the patches regardless. That's actually a good thing, even though the operating system patches are more enabling the use of microcode patches (which may or may not ever arrive) than providing real mitigations themselves. My experience with a couple of very old computers (G1 i5, Core2) is that the Windows patch by itself has little or no noticeable effect on operation, and those are too old to ever get microcode patches from Intel or the computer/motherboard manufacturer so the Windows patch is as far as things will go. You *do* need to get the January Windows patch, though, if you want to continue getting updates in the future for Windows, unless of course you have one of those AMD systems.

    As for the microcode patches from Intel ... don't hold your breath. As a practical matter, if your computer is more than 2-3 years old you'll never see any. Although Windows (like Linux) is able to push microcode patches (or overlay them) itself, MS has for some reason chosen not to do that. Therefore, you won't get them unless your computer or motherboard manufacturer decides to issue a BIOS update with them. Which will never happen for a computer or motherboard more than 2-3 years old regardless of which CPU chip is used. So the Intel promise to issue microcode patches for CPUs up to 5 years old doesn't mean much - you'll only get them if you run Linux (or maybe Apple). Even within the 1-2 year period ... I have a <2 year tablet for which the manufacturer has clearly stated there will be no BIOS updates - essentially, they only support it for hardware failures within the 1-year warranty period, and this is not a hardware failure. YMM(and probably will)V, but basically don't get hopes up for the full fix on anything but the most recent, higher-end chips in the more expensive, well-supported systems.
    Last edited by mikeebb; 01-12-2018 at 01:08 PM. Reason: Reconfigured - readability

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