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The BSDs Get Promptly Mitigated For The MDS Side-Channel Vulnerabilities

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  • The BSDs Get Promptly Mitigated For The MDS Side-Channel Vulnerabilities

    Phoronix: The BSDs Get Promptly Mitigated For The MDS Side-Channel Vulnerabilities

    When Spectre and Meltdown came to light, there was some frustrations in the BSD community that it took time for them to be briefed and ultimately handling the mitigations for these CPU security vulnerabilities. Fortunately, with the new Microarchitectural Data Sampling (MDS, also dubbed "Zombieload") vulnerabilities, the key BSDs have seen punctual patches...

    http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...itigations-MDS

  • #2
    Any news of Intel making Clear BSD to make up for the performance loss? This is getting embarrassing.

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    • #3
      Looking forward to the results. They said the performance loss could be up to 40% for some cases.

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      • #4
        so finally amd fxes are faster then their intel counterparts ?...and cheaper - well played intel. I feel betrayed

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        • #5
          ...the key BSDs have seen punctual patches.
          I haven't seen anything about OpenBSD issuing patches, yet, so at least one "key BSD" may have been left out. If they were, it's probably because the project is still in a bad odor with Intel for not playing nice with their past disclosure embargoes. I understand Intel's position, and I understand Theo and his crew's position. They both have merits and the both have cons.

          On the other hand, OpenBSD completely disables Intel Hyperthread by default on boot up. Hyperthreading being active appears to be necessary to be able to exploit the vulnerabilities. Coupled with a microcode update, OpenBSD may not require immediate updates. There was plenty of speculation late last year about more speculative exec exploits that hadn't been released and that they were related to Hyperthreading. I'd like to read what Theo has to say about it and its impact on OpenBSD now the embargo is lifted.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by stormcrow View Post

            I haven't seen anything about OpenBSD issuing patches, yet, so at least one "key BSD" may have been left out. If they were, it's probably because the project is still in a bad odor with Intel for not playing nice with their past disclosure embargoes. I understand Intel's position, and I understand Theo and his crew's position. They both have merits and the both have cons.

            On the other hand, OpenBSD completely disables Intel Hyperthread by default on boot up. Hyperthreading being active appears to be necessary to be able to exploit the vulnerabilities. Coupled with a microcode update, OpenBSD may not require immediate updates. There was plenty of speculation late last year about more speculative exec exploits that hadn't been released and that they were related to Hyperthreading. I'd like to read what Theo has to say about it and its impact on OpenBSD now the embargo is lifted.
            Yes, OpenBSD might be a year ahead of the curve here by disabling hyperthreading. Not sure if they were notified or not though. For Specter and Meltdown FreeBSD was blindsided by it only finding out days before by accident. Apparently the changes required for it were quite difficult to do as well.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by eydee View Post
              Any news of Intel making Clear BSD to make up for the performance loss? This is getting embarrassing.
              Intel makes Clear Linux because Linux is essential to their business and CL is a way to give their CPUs a competitive advantage. They're not doing it just to get brownie points from the Linux community and for the same reason, they won't be releasing a ClearBSD either. If you want one, the way to get it is to study Clear Linux, see if the same methods could be applied to a BSD system and then create your own BSD distro.

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              • #8

                Originally posted by stormcrow View Post
                On the other hand, OpenBSD completely disables Intel Hyperthread by default on boot up. Hyperthreading being active appears to be necessary to be able to exploit the vulnerabilities. Coupled with a microcode update, OpenBSD may not require immediate updates. There was plenty of speculation late last year about more speculative exec exploits that hadn't been released and that they were related to Hyperthreading. I'd like to read what Theo has to say about it and its impact on OpenBSD now the embargo is lifted.
                Hyperthreading's basically just a poor man's core - sharing caches, getting thrashed, etc etc. It should be relegated to the dustbin of computing.
                Is it even in their latest architecture? (i7-9nnn?)
                Last edited by Bsdisbetter; 05-16-2019, 08:10 PM.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by stormcrow View Post

                  I haven't seen anything about OpenBSD issuing patches
                  https://marc.info/?l=openbsd-cvs&m=155812004812358&w=2

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Bsdisbetter View Post


                    Hyperthreading's basically just a poor man's core - sharing caches, getting thrashed, etc etc. It should be relegated to the dustbin of computing.
                    Is it even in their latest architecture? (i7-9nnn?)
                    AMD appears to be doubling down on it. The rumor is that Zen 3 will have 4-way SMT, similar to how Power chips from IBM support more than 1 extra thread per core.

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