AMD will release CPU microcode updates for Spectre




AMD officially acknowledged today that its processors are not vulnerable to the Meltdown bug, but are affected by both variants of the Spectre flaw.

In addition, due to repeated questions regarding the status of its GPU products, Mark Papermaster, AMD Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, clarified that AMD Radeon GPU architectures do not use speculative execution and thus are not susceptible to either the Meltdown or Spectre vulnerabilities.

AMD and Meltdown (CVE-2017-5754)

AMD reiterated once more that its CPUs are not vulnerable to the Meltdown bug because of different design choices it made.

AMD and the first of the Spectre vulnerabilities (CVE-2017-5753)

AMD claims its processors are vulnerable,  but an OS-level patch is enough to fix this vulnerability.

Both Linux and Microsoft have started deploying operating system updates for this issue, albeit some Windows users reported BSOD errors earlier in the week, which led Microsoft to pause the rollout of the Spectre #1 patch for the time being.

AMD reports that only AMD Opteron, Athlon and AMD Turion X2 Ultra families were affected by these BSOD errors.

"We expect this issue to be corrected shortly and Microsoft should resume updates for these older processors by next week," Papermaster said.

AMD and the second of the Spectre vulnerabilities (CVE-2017-5715)

Just like with Intel processors,  AMD processors will also require a microcode update to solve this problem. Intel has already started releasing microcode updates for Intel CPUs running Linux.

AMD has announced it will release microcode updates for its customers and partners for Ryzen and EPYC processors starting this week, and for previous CPU generations in the coming weeks.

"These software updates will be provided by system providers and OS vendors," Papermaster said, "please check with your supplier for the latest information on the available option for your configuration and requirements."

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