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Thread: A Backdoor In AMD's Catalyst OpenCL Library?

  1. #1
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    Default A Backdoor In AMD's Catalyst OpenCL Library?

    Phoronix: A Backdoor In AMD's Catalyst OpenCL Library?

    There's a chance there might be a concealed backdoor within AMD's Catalyst driver, in particular within their closed-source graphics driver's OpenCL library...

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=MTU2OTc

  2. #2
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    I was considering buying an AMD mobo and cpu next upgrade as a means to step away from Intel. There goes that thought.

  3. #3
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    AMD must be on of the the dumbest companies in the history. Not only having a backdoor but also labelling it backdoor is universally dumb.

  4. #4
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    I'd say wait a bit. It's probably a funny name for some harmless debug hook.

  5. #5
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    Can someone please verify the existence of this string?

    Not only does this make the Catalyst driver suspect, it also casts a shadow over the open-source driver. If you remember, AMD pushed *hard* to use a firmware blob in Radeon, instead of the clean-room approach of RadeonHD.

    I used to think it didn't matter, but apparently I was naive. Luc Verhaegen was right all along.

  6. #6
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    Well, either the most stupidly obvious back door code, or maybe exactly what it says: osTestBackdoor == API that bypasses the standard OpenCL APIs to do some form of testing of their OpenCL driver to check that it is interacting with local Operating System correctly.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by [Knuckles] View Post
    I'd say wait a bit. It's probably a funny name for some harmless debug hook.
    We'll get this type of explanation regardless of what it really does. That's what PR staff (and lawyers) are for - coming up with logically plausible bullshit.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pajn View Post
    AMD must be on of the the dumbest companies in the history. Not only having a backdoor but also labelling it backdoor is universally dumb.
    I think Microsoft is the dumbest company, as it's publicly warned that it’ll hand out zero day exploits for Windows XP, like it has done for a dozen years with the NSA.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by e8hffff View Post
    I was considering buying an AMD mobo and cpu next upgrade as a means to step away from Intel. There goes that thought.
    Let me summarize:
    1) Most likely you are Linux user.
    2) You considered buying a AMD GPU but not nVidia

    This implies:
    1) You do not need high end GPU performance
    2) You do not need bugfree OpenCL implementation (if you use it at all)

    Well, why the hell should you use catalyst then? I use radeon open source drivers every day (r600) and i am completely happy with it. Cities in Motions 2 runs great. :-P

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kemosabe View Post
    Let me summarize:
    1) Most likely you are Linux user.
    2) You considered buying a AMD GPU but not nVidia

    This implies:
    1) You do not need high end GPU performance
    2) You do not need bugfree OpenCL implementation (if you use it at all)

    Well, why the hell should you use catalyst then? I use radeon open source drivers every day (r600) and i am completely happy with it. Cities in Motions 2 runs great. :-P
    He might just want to support the only dedicated gpu company with a foss driver, even if he isn't using it yet.

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