Windows 10: Windows Client Guidance against speculative execution vulnerabilities

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  1. Posts : 38,043
    Dual boot Windows 10 FCU Pro x 64 & current Insider 10 Pro
       27 Jan 2018 #380

    johngalt said: View Post
    Sire - on a motherboard directly. But, technically, the CPU isn't a part of the motherboard, it is a separate component added to a motherboard. Just like HDs, optical drives, GPUs, etc.

    And your graphics cards have their own BIOS and firmware.

    So do your HDs and any optical drives you have installed.
    Ok, so I forgot a few items.

    As for coding, if you code it incorrectly, you could damage it when trying to use it. The fastest (although not really best, but give me time) analogy I can come up with is this:

    Try using a 120V appliance on a 240V line. You've just used that appliance in a way that will (probably) kill it. And rather permanently.

    If the coding is wrong, and it, say, draws the wrong amount of power (because all these silicon parts need electricity to do their silicon parts things that they do) - poof! fried. And once fried, you cannot recode (for lack of a better word - reload the appropriate firmware that it needed to make it accessible to be able to reload the ROM) them for anything - they are damaged goods.

    That why, in the Android phone world, I was known for attempting (more than once!) to brick one particular phone that I had, he Motorola DROID BIONIC - to prove a point. There is what we started calling a soft brick, which is the scenario that you're referring to - the coding got it all wrong, and nothing worked - and Motorola said "Oops, sorry, send it to us and we'll fix it for you" to which I said "Pooof - watch this - and 'recoded' it to make ti work again (again, more than once!), and then there is hard brick - where you cannot even access the device to try to recode it because it is damaged goods - which is what I described above.

    So, sometimes you can - if it just broke the booting process. But sometimes , you can't - because it broke something in the component itself.
    That's actually where I learned the term "brick". Had a DroidX2 in which I dabbled a little in unlocking it. Had a program to do so. Never heard of soft or hard brick, though, which makes sense. Some around here use the term "brick" rather flippantly instead of what I term borked. Borked would be your term "soft brick".

    LOL. There was a huge building project that the sparkies mistakenly wired a temporary hanging power line with 220V instead of 120. The first guy plugged a power drill in in which it ran real fast for about 5 seconds, then poof! Up in smoke. Melted the windings in the motor. A fairly new Bosch hammer drill, too.
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  2.    27 Jan 2018 #381

    fdegrove said: View Post
    It is possible to load microcode in Windows through third party software (from VMWare for instance) but I've never seen any evidence of microcode being updated by Windows itself, not ever. If it does then I'd like to see evidence of it.
    https://support.microsoft.com/en-ca/...te-for-windows
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  3. Posts : 1,471
    WinX Pro x64 IP current
       27 Jan 2018 #382

    Tony K said: View Post
    Ok, so I forgot a few items.



    That's actually where I learned the term "brick". Had a DroidX2 in which I dabbled a little in unlocking it. Had a program to do so. Never heard of soft or hard brick, though, which makes sense. Some around here use the term "brick" rather flippantly instead of what I term borked. Borked would be your term "soft brick".

    LOL. There was a huge building project that the sparkies mistakenly wired a temporary hanging power line with 220V instead of 120. The first guy plugged a power drill in in which it ran real fast for about 5 seconds, then poof! Up in smoke. Melted the windings in the motor. A fairly new Bosch hammer drill, too.
    Yeah. We came up with soft bricked because you had to do some very specific things to it to get it to recognize that you could access the device again - but in comparing devices side by side, soft bricked and hard bricked showed the same stupid broken whatever it was logo when attempting to boot. It was all because of the stupid BIONIC's locked bootloader. which was the reason I unlocked the bootloader on my Nexus 6 as soon as I could possibly do so lol. I like having back channels to do things in case my phones go stupid on me (and I was a crackflasher galore, so I was flashing whatever ROMs I could on my OG DROID and then, when we finally got init.2, on the BIONIC).

    Strangely enough, though, I never put a ROM on the N6. It's still stock - unlocked bootloader, rooted, but stock Android.

    And even more strangely, on my current Taimen, I haven't even unlocked the bootloader, much less rooted it...

    And ouch - that would have made me mad (losing a drill like that) - but can you imagine if it had been something even more important than a drill? Like someone plugged in a 75" teleconference TV to test? Or an electric car (although that probably would have been fine as there are redundant checks for battery charging in most devices these days).
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  4. Posts : 1,471
    WinX Pro x64 IP current
       27 Jan 2018 #383

    Ahh, thanks Sloth - that shows that not only is the mechanism there, but it has been done before....
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  5. Posts : 38,043
    Dual boot Windows 10 FCU Pro x 64 & current Insider 10 Pro
       27 Jan 2018 #384

    fdegrove said: View Post
    Hi,



    Exactly. But that also implies this is not the case for machines not made by MS.

    Firmware updates that flash firmwares can often be run from within Windows but are either released through the OEM which get them in some cases form their Intel partnership or are written entirely in house.

    Cheers,
    I be thinking the MoBo needs the proper hardware circuitry to update the BIOS, which some have such as the Surface and others. e.g. My Asus board has a designated USB port to update the BIOS with Easy Flash, which I think is implemented on the board these days.

    Update BIOS - How to use Easy Flash to update the Notebook BIOS version? | Official Support | ASUS USA
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  6. Posts : 19,780
    Win10 Pro, Win10 Pro N, Win10 Home, Win10 Pro Insider Fast Ring, Windows 8.1 Pro, Ubuntu
       27 Jan 2018 #385

    I had to change my avatar to Meltdown.
    A melting 8700K

    original size

    Click image for larger version. 

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  7.    27 Jan 2018 #386

    Hi,

    Ok, thanks for that.
    Looking at the files it contains this is a OS loaded MC update indeed.

    Cheers,
      My ComputersSystem Spec


  8. Posts : 38,043
    Dual boot Windows 10 FCU Pro x 64 & current Insider 10 Pro
       27 Jan 2018 #387

    Cliff S said: View Post
    I had to change my avatar to Meltdown.
    A melting 8700K
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  •    27 Jan 2018 #388

    Hi,

    Tony K said: View Post
    I be thinking the MoBo needs the proper hardware circuitry to update the BIOS, which some have such as the Surface and others. e.g. My Asus board has a designated USB port to update the BIOS with Easy Flash, which I think is implemented on the board these days.

    Update BIOS - How to use Easy Flash to update the Notebook BIOS version? | Official Support | ASUS USA

    My machines run AMI UEFI and these can be updated in a number of ways:

    From within the UFI menu itself through a connection to the ftp server, from within Windows desktop, over a network or by booting off a bootable external device connected to a USB port.
    This works for MEI/AMT, UEFI/Bios updates, Raid ROM, TPM. Some flashing needs to restart the machine to finish the flashing in a pre-OS environment though. So, after POST but before loading the OS to be clear.

    Cheers,
      My ComputersSystem Spec


  • Posts : 38,043
    Dual boot Windows 10 FCU Pro x 64 & current Insider 10 Pro
       27 Jan 2018 #389

    fdegrove said: View Post
    Hi,

    My machines run AMI UEFI and these can be updated in a number of ways:

    From within the UFI menu itself through a connection to the ftp server, from within Windows desktop, over a network or by booting off a bootable external device connected to a USB port.
    This works for MEI/AMT, UEFI/Bios updates, Raid ROM, TPM. Some flashing needs to restart the machine to finish the flashing in a pre-OS environment though. So, after POST but before loading the OS to be clear.

    Cheers,
    Well, that's convenient. They've come a long way with flashing these days. Used to be fright night when it came to that.
      My ComputersSystem Spec


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