Meltdown fix can make some machines slower – Intel

Latest news

    Intel logo on machineImage copyright Getty Images
    Image caption Intel said at the CES technology conference that it would make all flawed chip safe “within a week”

    Intel has admitted that patches to fix the Spectre and Meltdown chip flaws could slow machines “in some cases”.

    Its own tests suggested performance slowdown could range from 2% to 14%.

    It said the impact of the patch, designed to prevent the bug accessing potentially sensitive data, should not be significant for “average computer users”.

    But gaming platforms and others relying on cloud services do appear to have been feeling the effect of the updates.

    “Based on our most recent PC benchmarking, we continue to expect that the performance impact should not be significant for average computer users,” Intel said in a statement.

    “Eighth Generation Core platforms with solid-state storage will see a performance impact of 6% or less.

    “This means the typical home and business PC user should not see significant slowdowns in common tasks such as reading email, writing a document or accessing digital photos.”

    Vulnerable to hackers

    Meltdown and Spectre have been discovered in computer chips in billions of computers, smartphone and tablets across the world.

    If they are not fixed, the vulnerability could be used by hackers to access private information.

    While Meltdown affects Intel-only processors, Spectre also affects rivals AMD and ARM.

    Epic Games, publisher of online video game Fortnite, has been one of the first companies to blame the fix for “login issues” and “service instability”.

    “All of our cloud services are affected by updates required to mitigate the Meltdown vulnerability,” it said in an online statement.

    The patch for the vulnerable processors requires intervention on a feature that is directly intended to boost chip performance.

    Software ‘taking strain’

    “Operating systems and software are now having to do work that the chip previously performed at very high speed,” said independent security analyst Graham Cluley.

    “Because the chips can no longer be trusted to perform one of the critical jobs [for which] they were being relied upon, software is taking the strain and inevitably that means that things will take longer.”

    He added: “The truth is that most of the time most people are not using the full potential of their computer. If they’re writing emails or surfing the web they’re barely straining their PC’s power at all, and so any slowdown is likely to be imperceptible.

    “Things may change, however, if you’re doing something more intensive with your computer – like performing a large number of complex calculations, or processing large amounts of data.”

    View the original article: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-42636415

    Intel is facing a growing number of lawsuits, including claims from groups of consumers alleging that it misled consumers by failing to disclose the security hole and demands for compensation based on the potential slower performance of machines that have been patched.

    In the same category are

    MPs to vote on early summer recess Image copyright PA Members of Parliament are to vote on whether to start their summer recess this Thursday, instead of next week.The government has ...
    IS fighters’ orphaned children stranded in Libya When the Islamic State group was pushed out of its Libyan stronghold in the city of Sirte nearly two years ago, the children of some foreign IS fighte...
    Brexit: Government scrapes through Customs Bill vote The government has narrowly avoided a defeat on its Customs Bill after agreeing to Brexiteers' demands to change its wording.MPs voted by 305 to 302...
    Russian woman charged with spying in the US Image copyright Facebook/ Maria Butina The US government has charged a 29-year-old Russian woman with conspiracy to act as a Russian government agen...
    ‘Delays’ hit third new Govia Thameslink rail timetable Image copyright Emily Perry Image caption Passengers have described the rail company as "completely incompetent" A troubled rail operator has been...
    World Cup: France welcomed by hundreds of thousands of supporters France have now won the World Cup twice - in 1998 and 2018World Cup winners France were welcomed home by hundreds of thousands of supporters as they ...

    Leave a comment

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.