Microsoft says security patches slowing down PCs, servers

But on Thursday, the company released a statement changing its stance and revealed that its products are likely to be vulnerable to both varients of the Spectre flaw.

Krzanich uses his letter to thank Google's Project Zero for identifying the Meltdown and Spectre problems, and also for practicing responsible disclosure. Unfortunately there have been reports on some AMD Windows PCs 'bricking', especially with patches for older AMD processors (AMD Opteron, Athlon and AMD Turion X2 Ultra families).

Major tech companies, including Intel, Microsoft and Google, scrambled to calm the mood this week after a large number of computer users reported performance problems linked to security updates for the Spectre and Meltdown vulnerabilities.

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GPZ Variant 2, is the second variant of Spectre. The company has also been exposed to the two Spectre flaws, and will be pushing out patches to resolve the issue.

Intel Executive Vice President Navin Shenoy on Wednesday issued an update on the impact of the patches on performance, saying that eighth-generation Kaby Lake and Coffee Lake platforms would see less than a 6 percent performance decrease. Users running HDD drives will see a lessened impact as the bottleneck from the slower drive is greater than the impact of the potential patches. He has written for Reuters, Bloomberg, Crain's New York Business and The New York Times. These updates will be provided to users by system providers and operating system vendors.

Now might be a better time than ever to bump up your CPUs clockspeed and take back performance. You understand and agree that no content published on the Site constitutes a recommendation that any particular security, portfolio of securities, transaction, or investment strategy is suitable or advisable for any specific person.

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Designed to address flaws in the speculative execution implementation in Intel's processors, most of which are shared with chips from its rivals including AMD and Arm, Intel's patches aim to close the Spectre and Meltdown vulnerabilities which allow unprivileged code to access supposedly-protected memory to steal confidential data including passwords. "This is why you want to be careful to evaluate the risk of untrusted code for each Windows Server instance, and balance the security versus performance tradeoff for your environment", he wrote.

All told, AMD is approaching the problem with a mix of OS patches and microcode updates.

Variation 2 (Branch Target Injection or Spectre), which is harder to exploit, is being addressed through optional microcode updates for Ryzen and EPYC processors starting this week.

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