AMD confirms its chips are vulnerable to Spectre, is rolling out fixes

By midian182 · 12 replies
Jan 12, 2018
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  1. With all the press related to the Spectre and Meltdown CPU flaws right now, Intel must be feeling the pressure. The same can’t be said for AMD, which, due to the architecture of its processors, stresses that there is “a near zero risk” to the company’s chips. However, it is still impacted by two of the exploits. A statement put out by the firm on Thursday states that both of the Spectre design flaws are “applicable to AMD processors.”

    Back when the flaws were first discovered, there was confusion over whether they affected AMD’s processors. The company even said that "AMD is not susceptible to all three variants," in a statement last week, but it seems it is susceptible to two of them.

    A blog post from Mark Papermaster, AMD’s chief technology officer, gives an update on what AMD is doing to address the situation.

    For Variant 1 (Bounds Check Bypass or Spectre), AMD is currently working with Microsoft to patch both old and new processors. Distribution of patches for older CPUs was paused after they bricked some systems, but fixed versions of these updates should resume by next week.

    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. Older CPUs will receive them over the coming weeks. They will be provided by system providers and OS vendors.

    AMD didn't reveal if, like Intel's chips, the patches will have an effect on system performance.

    Responding to questions about its GPUs, AMD says Radeon architectures do not use speculative execution and therefore are not susceptible to the threats. The company said it will release further updates on its progress "as needed."

    Permalink to story.

    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 12, 2018
  2. fadingfool

    fadingfool TS Booster Posts: 72   +81

    Confusion? The original AMD statement said AMD architecture was susceptible to Spectre (03/01/2018) but not meltdown.
    I think your quote is deliberately taken out of context to make it look like AMD said they were not susceptible to any of the attack vectors rather than what they were actually saying (not susceptible to all three of the attack vectors).
    SirChocula, HardReset, mosu and 8 others like this.
  3. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 10,490   +4,353

    Yeah, I thought I was reading the same thing that has been stated all along.
    HardReset, wizardB and veLa like this.
  4. mbrowne5061

    mbrowne5061 TS Evangelist Posts: 963   +495

    They also said that the updates that were rolling out had been bricking some older AMD systems. The affected systems ended up in a boot loop, not bricked.

    Its Techspot: they do their best to trash AMD in any way they can.
  5. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 10,490   +4,353

    I'm guessing you only see negativity when AMD is concerned.
  6. senketsu

    senketsu TS Guru Posts: 648   +421

    Microsoft January 3, 2018—KB4056892)
    "Microsoft has reports of some customers with AMD devices getting into an unbootable state after installing this KB. To prevent this issue, Microsoft will temporarily pause Windows OS updates to devices with impacted AMD processors at this time."
    Amet Monegro likes this.
  7. ZackL04

    ZackL04 TS Maniac Posts: 382   +183

    Are we talking about the site that has continually praised the Ryzen architecture for at least a year now??
    Steve likes this.
  8. Steve

    Steve TechSpot Editor Posts: 2,958   +2,300

    Everyone knows we're biased. Intel number 1, AMD bad.
    HardReset, mosu, Puiu and 9 others like this.
  9. veLa

    veLa TS Evangelist Posts: 817   +262

    Finally we've caught him, boys.
  10. BobHome

    BobHome TS Enthusiast Posts: 29   +10

    I "assume" from this comment: "Older CPUs will receive them over the coming weeks. They will be provided by system providers and OS vendors," that those of us that have built PCs have to look for a fix from Microsoft, Linux, etc. vendors?
  11. Jules Mark

    Jules Mark TS Enthusiast Posts: 28   +8

    The company even said that "AMD is not susceptible to all three variants," in a statement last week.

    Could you find that statement for us? Cause that is where the confusion comes from.
  12. cuerdc

    cuerdc TS Booster Posts: 144   +35

    Pc sales are down...New processors are not vulnerable...hint...hint
  13. HardReset

    HardReset TS Guru Posts: 604   +219

    AMD's official statement, from


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