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Intel: Don't Deploy Our Faulty Spectre Patches

Intel: Don't Deploy Our Faulty Spectre Patches

There is no good news out of this today, the difficulty a widespread attack is high but a targeted attack; not so much.

Now that a fix is in testing, Intel is recommending that "OEMs, cloud service providers, system manufacturers, software vendors and end users stop deployment of current versions" to limit the impact of unexpected reboots with current updates.

The company is advising people to stay far away from its patch after users complained that it caused their machines to reboot.

"We ask that our industry partners focus efforts on testing early versions of the updated solution so we can accelerate its release", added Shenoy.

In short, while computing device vendors and other Intel partners work with Intel to fix these issues at the top level and hopefully avoid these faulty patches, the firm also asking end users to stay away from the latest processor updates.

For now, leaving processors unpatched means chips still have the Spectre and Meltdown design flaws. But when carrying out some more intensive tasks, like browsing the internet on multiple tabs, users could see slowdowns closer to 12 percent on computers running with patched chips, Intel found.

In new guidance detailing affected desktop, mobile and server chips, Intel says it's creating an option for OEMs to use an old patch that doesn't cause reboots but removes the mitigation for Variant 2 of the Spectre attack.

Of all the companies hit by the Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities, Intel has been the most exposed, thanks to aggressive memory speculation and its own market dominance.

"We continue to urge all customers to vigilantly maintain security best practice and for consumers to keep systems up-to-date", he said. The company said Thursday newer chip models called Kaby Lake and Skylake are also affected. "We've had rc9's before, but they have been pretty rare (the last one was 3.1-rc9 back in 2011 - that release went all the way to rc10, and I really don't think we'll do that this time _despite_ all the CPU bug mitigation craziness)".

Intel didn't immediately respond to a comment on Torvald's criticism.

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