Friday, January 12th 2018

Intel Acknowledges: More BSODs Affecting "Haswell" and "Broadwell"

As Intel CEO Brian Krzanich emphasized in his Security-First Pledge, Intel is committed to transparency in reporting progress in handling the Google Project Zero exploits.

We have received reports from a few customers of higher system reboots after applying firmware updates. Specifically, these systems are running Intel Broadwell and Haswell CPUs for both client and data center. We are working quickly with these customers to understand, diagnose and address this reboot issue. If this requires a revised firmware update from Intel, we will distribute that update through the normal channels. We are also working directly with data center customers to discuss the issue.

End-users should continue to apply updates recommended by their system and operating system providers.
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26 Comments on Intel Acknowledges: More BSODs Affecting "Haswell" and "Broadwell"

#1
DRDNA
:eek:Dang no breaks anywhere:eek:
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#2
R-T-B
"DRDNA said:
:eek:Dang no breaks anywhere:eek:
Happens when you have to shit out fixes yesterday.
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#3
DRDNA
:eek:I mean Dang brakes-breaks everywhere:eek:
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#4
Solidstate89
Since apparently Microsoft isn't distributing the microcode update through WU like they did with the last microcode update, I doubt my desktop will ever see this update. The last BIOS update Asus gave was like 3 or 4 years ago.
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#5
ssdpro
What the heck are "higher reboots"? Is that "more frequent system restarts", "more frequent unwanted restarts", "more frequent need to restart", or "need to smoke out due to that 3% performance drop"? Even the premise is bizarre - who actually has their computer randomly restart? I haven't seen my computer randomly restart since like 2008 when I had unstable i7-920 overclocks. The premise suggests these people already experienced random restarts and now it does it more. I think they need to start at ground zero and at least start with a stable system.
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#6
Readlight
The last BIOS update Asus gave was like 3 or 4 years ago.[/quote]Do ancient computers also affected? everything works bad old bios, steam blue screening, old game engine, annoying windows.
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#7
R0H1T
"ssdpro said:
What the heck are "higher reboots"? Is that "more frequent system restarts", "more frequent unwanted restarts", "more frequent need to restart", or "need to smoke out due to that 3% performance drop"? Even the premise is bizarre - who actually has their computer randomly restart? I haven't seen my computer randomly restart since like 2008 when I had unstable i7-920 overclocks. The premise suggests these people already experienced random restarts and now it does it more. I think they need to start at ground zero and at least start with a stable system.
I think they (Intel) meant BSOD but to avoid another PR disaster just omitted that word, like their initial response to spectre/meltdown missing the important info wrt kernel memory being read on unpatched systems. Totally speculating here so don't quote me on that btw here's some PR blurb from BK ~
An Open Letter from Brian Krzanich, CEO of Intel Corporation, to Technology Industry Leaders

Following announcements of the Google Project Zero security exploits last week, Intel has continued to work closely with our partners with the shared goal of restoring confidence in the security of our customers’ data as quickly as possible. As I noted in my CES comments this week, the degree of collaboration across the industry has been remarkable. I am very proud of how our industry has pulled together and want to thank everyone for their extraordinary collaboration. In particular, we want to thank the Google Project Zero team for practicing responsible disclosure, creating the opportunity for the industry to address these new issues in a coordinated fashion.

As this process unfolds, I want to be clear about Intel’s commitments to our customers. This is our pledge:

1. Customer-First Urgency: By Jan. 15, we will have issued updates for at least 90 percent of Intel CPUs introduced in the past five years, with updates for the remainder of these CPUs available by the end of January. We will then focus on issuing updates for older products as prioritized by our customers.

2. Transparent and Timely Communications: As we roll out software and firmware patches, we are learning a great deal. We know that impact on performance varies widely, based on the specific workload, platform configuration and mitigation technique. We commit to provide frequent progress reports of patch progress, performance data and other information. These can be found at the Intel.com website.

3. Ongoing Security Assurance: Our customers’ security is an ongoing priority, not a one-time event. To accelerate the security of the entire industry, we commit to publicly identify significant security vulnerabilities following rules of responsible disclosure and, further, we commit to working with the industry to share hardware innovations that will accelerate industry-level progress in dealing with side-channel attacks. We also commit to adding incremental funding for academic and independent research into potential security threats.

We encourage our industry partners to continue to support these practices. There are important roles for everyone: Timely adoption of software and firmware patches by consumers and system manufacturers is critical. Transparent and timely sharing of performance data by hardware and software developers is essential to rapid progress.

The bottom line is that continued collaboration will create the fastest and most effective approaches to restoring customer confidence in the security of their data. This is what we all want and are striving to achieve.

Brian Krzanich
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#8
RejZoR
"Solidstate89 said:
Since apparently Microsoft isn't distributing the microcode update through WU like they did with the last microcode update, I doubt my desktop will ever see this update. The last BIOS update Asus gave was like 3 or 4 years ago.
Same for my X99A Gaming 7. Last update, 2016... This is just lazy from the vendor's side.
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#9
mcraygsx
"RejZoR said:
Same for my X99A Gaming 7. Last update, 2016... This is just lazy from the vendor's side.
BIOS version1203 with updated micro code for my Asus Maximux IX was made available at beginning for this week. Gigabyte cannot be far behind.
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#10
RejZoR
"mcraygsx said:
BIOS version1203 with updated micro code for my Asus Maximux IX was made available at beginning for this week. Gigabyte cannot be far behind.
Nothing from MSI so far...
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#11
INSTG8R
I’ve turned off Windows update service for now. The last fix broke things important to me. I highly doubt ASUS will put out a BIOS for my Sabertooth...I’ve formatted once and reset Windows once in as many weeks over this nonsense. No intention to do it again any time soon...
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#12
Shihabyooo
My Asus B85M-G apparently has the bios update. Have to say I'm surprised, as my previous and more premium Z87-Pro of the same generation doesn't!

Honestly, though. I think there should be legistlation that puts pressure on core hardware and critical software makers to react to such security issues beyond the EOL as long as they remain mainstream. Heck, even for a -reasonable- cost. That, or speed up the effing IP expiration and have them open source the effing things if they are not caring to maintain them anymore!
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#13
bug
"Solidstate89 said:
Since apparently Microsoft isn't distributing the microcode update through WU like they did with the last microcode update, I doubt my desktop will ever see this update. The last BIOS update Asus gave was like 3 or 4 years ago.
Eh, imagine this was Android world where the chipset makers basically stop caring two years after they sell a chip. Tops. (Two wrongs don't make a right, I know.)
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#14
DRDNA
"bug said:
Eh, imagine this was Android world where the chipset makers basically stop caring two years after they sell a chip. Tops. (Two wrongs don't make a right, I know.)
Right kind of like Asus and MSI and Gigabyte and so on and so forth....lol sorry I couldn't help my self.:p
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#15
WikiFM
In general, our experience is that Variant 1 and Variant 3 mitigations have minimal performance impact, while Variant 2 remediation, including OS and microcode, has a performance impact.
Here is the summary of what we have found so far:
With Windows 10 on newer silicon (2016-era PCs with Skylake, Kabylake or newer CPU), benchmarks show single-digit slowdowns, but we don’t expect most users to notice a change because these percentages are reflected in milliseconds.
With Windows 10 on older silicon (2015-era PCs with Haswell or older CPU), some benchmarks show more significant slowdowns, and we expect that some users will notice a decrease in system performance.
With Windows 8 and Windows 7 on older silicon (2015-era PCs with Haswell or older CPU), we expect most users to notice a decrease in system performance.
For context, on newer CPUs such as on Skylake and beyond, Intel has refined the instructions used to disable branch speculation to be more specific to indirect branches, reducing the overall performance penalty of the Spectre mitigation. Older versions of Windows have a larger performance impact because Windows 7 and Windows 8 have more user-kernel transitions because of legacy design decisions, such as all font rendering taking place in the kernel.
This info I found in https://cloudblogs.microsoft.com/microsoftsecure/2018/01/09/understanding-the-performance-impact-of-spectre-and-meltdown-mitigations-on-windows-systems/ kinda shows how Intel and Microsoft are in a programmed obsolescence patch, cause older CPUs and Windows will be more affected by the patch, from my point of view seems like a very convenient workaround for them.
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#16
Hood
"Solidstate89 said:
Since apparently Microsoft isn't distributing the microcode update through WU like they did with the last microcode update, I doubt my desktop will ever see this update. The last BIOS update Asus gave was like 3 or 4 years ago.
The last BIOS update on my Asus Z97 Deluxe was April 2016. I've been checking for a new one, but nothing so far. I did the recent Windows 10 update, and didn't notice any drop in performance (yet).
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#17
Aquinus
Resident Wat-man
I'm starting to think that my choice to go with Linux exclusively is starting to pay off. :laugh:
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#18
Midland Dog
they better not take performance of us to fix it, im barely scraping the bottom of the barrel with my g3258 already
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#19
Solidstate89
"Aquinus said:
I'm starting to think that my choice to go with Linux exclusively is starting to pay off. :laugh:
??????
This is a CPU issue. What are you talking about?
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#20
HTC
It could be genuine but i can't help but wonder if both Microsoft and Intel are using spectre / meltdown as an excuse to "force" newer software / hardware (respectively). The same problem exists on pretty much every Intel's CPU since before year 2000 but only the most recent CPUs are less affected? And Microsoft has "conveniently" managed to make Windows 10 less affected then previous OSes ...

I do know it's only meltdow that affects Intel only CPUs, while spectre affects pretty much all vendors.

I wonder ...
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#23
bug
"Hood said:
Is there any info available about the performance hit on Ubuntu patches? I'm assuming it's not as bad as the Windows patches.
Check out phoronix.com. They've tested patches to death.
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#25
Hood
"bug said:
Check out phoronix.com. They've tested patches to death.
Sorry, but I didn't want to read about it for hours, that's why I asked you, since you dumped Windows and went for Linux. We all know the numbers on Windows (5-20% performance hit, depending on version and CPU), and were hoping for your insight on Ubuntu patches, in basic percentages.
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