Intel Haswell and Broadwell Reboot Issue Cause Identified

Intel tells users to stop deploying buggy Spectre patch, citing technical issues

Intel now knows why Spectre and Metldown patches are causing reboots

The news from Intel that the CPU microcode update, which it issued to patch the Spectre vulnerability, was inducing random system reboots just made the Meltdown/Spectre issue go from bad to worse.

There have been numerous reports of issues with the various patches issued by vendors, including Intel.

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The announcement of the alternative update doesn't inspire confidence that this reboot issue will be fixed shortly. Now, things are so busted that the company is telling some of its customers to avoid the official patch altogether. There was no indication of when Intel will release an updated fix, although the industry is very concerned about the ability of attackers to exploit the vulnerabilities.

Intel has asked computer makers to stop rolling out a set of faulty patches it issued to fix security flaws in its chips and instead start testing an updated version.

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The company says it has identified the problems behind the bug, which potentially leaves the Broadwell, Haswell, Coffee Lake, Kaby Lake, Skylake, and Ivy Bridge chip generations open to intrusion.

This message is specifically for OEM's, cloud service providers, system manufacturers software vendors and end users. "The security of our products is critical for Intel, our customers and partners, and for me, personally". Recent statements from Intel and Microsoft confirm that some patches may cause a reduction in system performance, as patching the vulnerabilities means fiddling with processes that are created to speed up CPU performance. Now they are now advising users to "stop deployment of current versions". It may be that Haswell and Broadwell fixes will arrive soon, but that the other processors will take longer to fix. In a post today, executive vice president Neil Shenoy announced that Intel had located the source of some of the recent reboot problems and is recommending users skip the patches entirely until a better version could be deployed.

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