AMD CPUs Are Potentially Vulnerable To Spectre / Variant 2
Written by Michael Larabel in AMD on 12 January 2018 at 08:44 AM EST. 30 Comments
AMD --
Last week in light of the Spectre disclosure. AMD believed they were at "near zero risk" to Variant Two / Branch Target Injection. But now the company confirmed last night that's not the case: they are at least potentially vulnerable.

AMD's updated statement by Mark Papermaster reads, "While we believe that AMD’s processor architectures make it difficult to exploit Variant 2, we continue to work closely with the industry on this threat. We have defined additional steps through a combination of processor microcode updates and OS patches that we will make available to AMD customers and partners to further mitigate the threat."

AMD will be rolling out new microcode updates for Ryzen/EPYC starting this week. For Linux users they also acknowledge the work being done on Retpoline for mitigating the threat.

The Retpoline Linux patches continue to be worked on but have yet to be mainlined. It's looking like Retpoline will likely land for Linux 4.16. There are also needed LLVM / GCC patches too, which have yet to land but hopefully will still make it for the upcoming GCC 8.0 release.

AMD's updated processor security statement can be read at AMD.com. AMD remains certain they are not vulnerable to the Meltdown vulnerability affecting Intel CPUs.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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