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Intel admits patch for chip flaw is causing reboot problems


"After investigating, Microsoft determined that some AMD chipsets do not conform to the documentation previously provided to Microsoft to develop the Windows operating system mitigations to protect against the chipset vulnerabilities known as Spectre and Meltdown", Microsoft wrote in an advisory.

Nvidia graphics processing units are not, in fact, affected by the Spectre flaw present in nearly all computer, tablet, and phone CPUs, the company said on Wednesday.

Intel has identified three issues in updates released over the past week for "microcode", or firmware, the newspaper reported, citing a confidential document the company had shared with some customers that it had reviewed. What we did was released driver updates to patch CPU security vulnerabilities.

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Chipmakers have teamed up with Google, Microsoft Corp, Apple Inc, and other leading tech companies since the summer to devise software patches. The big issue for these vendors is how much code needs to be rewritten for applications that currently run on Intel chips. AMD promises to continue to provide updates on the situation as more research is carried out and further developments are made to bolster security.

The flaws affect virtually all computing devices running on chips manufactured by Intel, AMD and ARM, although the worst - called Meltdown - largely just affects Intel. Skylake CPUs and newer have more refined branch prediction, so the Spectre patch doesn't influence them to the same degree.

Lastly, the Intel CEO reaffirms the company's broader committment to user security, calling it an "ongoing priority, not a one-time event".

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He said that regaining customer trust is something everyone in the industry will be striving for, and that continued collaboration will be key to making it happen.

"Specifically, these systems are running Intel Broadwell and Haswell CPUs for both client and data centre", he says. The vulnerabilities could allow for bad actors to have access to privileged data on a computer, even without the appropriate permissions. Presumably, it would take too much work to fix operating systems that are supposed to be discontinued in a few years anyway.

Microsoft explained that the reason why Windows 7 and 8/8.1 are more impacted than Windows 10 is because the two use older kernels which perform more transitions between the kernel-mode and the user-mode.

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Besides when you are talking 15 years of chips being affected there was never going to be any way Intel would have done a recall. Intel claims that the performance impact will be workload-specific, and will not be significant for the average computer user.

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