Thursday, January 18th 2018

BSODs from Meltdown and Spectre Firmware Updates Are Spreading Like the Plague

Have you ever taken your car to the mechanic shop to fix one thing but end up breaking another? Well, that's how Intel CPU owners are feeling right now. Intel previously confirmed that their Meltdown and Spectre firmware updates are causing irritating reboots on systems with Broadwell and Haswell processors. After analyzing the latest customer reports, they are acknowledging that the updates are also causing BSODs on the Kaby Lake, Skylake, Ivy Bridge, and Sandy Bridge platforms. This shouldn't come as a shocker considering how both the Meltdown and Spectre exploits affect Intel processors over the past 20 years. The possibility of all platforms suffering from the same side effects is extremely high. Fear not, though, as Intel is already working on an updated microcode to fix the constant system reboots. Motherboard vendors should have the beta microcode for validation by next week. Expect a new BIOS revision for your motherboard soon.
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43 Comments on BSODs from Meltdown and Spectre Firmware Updates Are Spreading Like the Plague

#26
Arrakis9
Ed_1, post: 3785578, member: 33746"
Hold on, if the BSOD is from firmware, how are the older 2xxx, 3xxx etc getting issues when no bios microcode has been released to users?

Maybe they mean internal testing.
Red_Machine, post: 3785668, member: 88861"
My motherboard hasn't had a BIOS update since 2012, so I'm not holding my breath for a fix for these.
Mussels, post: 3785688, member: 1746"
So whats going on with BIOS updates for older boards? I've got everything from 1st gen through 7th here in the house (some are repair jobs, not my personal machines), and many have not had BIOS updates in years - are we really expecting companies to fire up BIOS updates for their discontinued products?
You can either do one of two things, modify and inject the micro code update to your latest bios or you can inject the updates with your kernel load when your system boots.

Check this thread out on overclock.net for a better idea.

http://www.overclock.net/t/1643053/improved-overclocking-for-haswell-with-updated-microcode-update-cpu-microcode-through-software

There are actually a bunch of threads in the cpu section going over these issues you guys mentioned.
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#27
BrainCruser
What were people expecting to happen from unmapping and remapping the kernel memory on every system call?
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#28
Assimilator
Arrakis+9, post: 3785726, member: 41759"
You can either do one of two things, modify and inject the micro code update to your latest bios or you can inject the updates with your kernel load when your system boots.

Check this thread out on overclock.net for a better idea.

http://www.overclock.net/t/1643053/improved-overclocking-for-haswell-with-updated-microcode-update-cpu-microcode-through-software

There are actually a bunch of threads in the cpu section going over these issues you guys mentioned.
So in other words, the only way to get the Spectre mitigation update for older platforms (SNB/IVB) is to manually inject the updated microcode - either though a manually modified BIOS, or by injecting the update before the OS boots via the VMware driver? Neither of which are official/supported ways of getting this update? I can't imagine many people will go to the trouble of doing this, so I'm interested how these reports of SNB/IVB instability are coming out.

Thanks for the info on the VMware microcode driver though, I didn't know it existed and TBH it's pretty neat.
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#29
Prima.Vera
TheinsanegamerN, post: 3785638, member: 127292"
Ignoring that, once you are infected, patching will do jack. Any ifection that takes up residence thanks to this vulnerability would be impossible to remove from the hardware if it writes itself to bios or CPU firmware, and could block future updates, leaving you with a permanently pwned system.

Part of the reason this vulnerability is so dangerous is people like you that leave their systems vulnerable. By the time you hear about widespread exploits, it will likely be too late for you.
That's why you use an antivirus and anti-malware software, which even free ones like Malwarebytes or Superantispyware are doing wonders.
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#30
eidairaman1
The Exiled Airman
I will not be updating till all the metal shavings settle.
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#31
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
Skylake here, installed the MSI microcode updated BIOS and not a single BSOD so far.
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#32
fullinfusion
Vanguard Beta Tester
FordGT90Concept, post: 3785797, member: 60463"
Skylake here, installed the MSI microcode updated BIOS and not a single BSOD so far.
Just wait, it'll happen ;)

@Mussels I read a few days ago pretty much any board thats up to 18 months old should get support, but beyond that ppl will be shit outa luck.
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#33
ssdpro
FordGT90Concept, post: 3785797, member: 60463"
Skylake here, installed the MSI microcode updated BIOS and not a single BSOD so far.
I updated a laptop and a desktop Z170 system. Not a single BSOD either. I checked over the ROG forums and there isn't a single report of a sudden new BSOD. Where are these "constant" bsods?
Perhaps this is a server thing?
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#34
Janko D
KarymidoN, post: 3785565, member: 153998"
Every CPU Built since 1995 it's affected.
Why you lie?
AMD Ryzen is not affected from Spectre. All other AMD are affected on Spectre - Linux custom kernel only. Intel Coffee Lake and older (Intel Atom also) are affected from Meltdown and Spectre on Win, macOS and Linux.
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#35
lexluthermiester
Janko D, post: 3786311, member: 176562"
Why you lie?
AMD Ryzen is not affected from Spectre. All other AMD are affected on Spectre - Linux custom kernel only. Intel Coffee Lake and older (Intel Atom also) are affected from Meltdown and Spectre on Win, macOS and Linux.
Incorrect. ALL CPU's made since 1993 are affected, including Ryzen.
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#36
Janko D
lexluthermiester, post: 3786368, member: 134537"
Incorrect. ALL CPU's made since 1993 are affected, including Ryzen.
Why lie Intel fanboy. You cry because Intel knew about Meltdown problem on Coffee Lake (half year) and even so, they released processors with problems.
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#37
ExV6k
Janko D, post: 3786414, member: 176562"
Why lie Intel fanboy. You cry because Intel knew about Meltdown problem on Coffee Lake (half year) and even so, they released processors with problems.
Someone's mad..
Anyway, the Meltown flaw only affects Intel and some ARM-based micro architectures (Cortex A75 and Apple Swift, for example). On the other hand, Spectre affects basically every single Out-of-Order execution micro architecture that is based on the Tomasulo algorithm so yeah, even Ryzen CPUs are affected.
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#38
lexluthermiester
ExV6k, post: 3786472, member: 168246"
Someone's mad..
The term "temper tantrum" comes to mind... Kinda sad. And he called me a fanboy no less. :laugh: :kookoo:
Posted on Reply
#40
Readlight
This means my 100euro worth, Windows 10 shiitt Atom tablet will more slower. And also notebooks, i52400, Athlons. All will be slow. Because nobody will make any more good os for them, except Android go.
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#41
lexluthermiester
Readlight, post: 3786642, member: 160019"
This means my 100euro worth, Windows 10 shiitt Atom tablet will more slower. And also notebooks, i52400, Athlons. All will be slow. Because nobody will make any more good os for them, except Android go.
Incorrect. Most consumer systems will feel little impact from the patches. In some systems the storage performance will be affected, but the degree to which will vary from device to device and likely will not be serious enough for most end users to notice a difference.
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#42
TheOne
We wont know the full performance impact until all the patches are available, though Skylake and higher are supposed to only see a small performance loss, Microsoft has warned older systems may see a more significant performance decrease, and cautioned against early comparisons that test just the software patch and not the microcode update, though there is no telling if older systems will receive any update.
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#43
ExV6k
To be completely honest, I don't feel any difference on my rig after the first Windows mitigation patch (I believe it's build number 16299.192), albeit i'm using a fairly modest Core i5 2500.
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