Though it’s hit a few snags in the process, Intel has continued to work over the past several weeks to develop and issue patches that protect against the Spectre CPU flaw revealed in January. Two weeks after recommending against installing its previous patches for Haswell and Broadwell chips because of issues with unwanted reboots, Intel has now announced that it is issuing microcode updates for Skylake-based systems to its industry partners. Further, Intel expects to issue updates for more platforms “in the coming days.”
Earlier this week, we released production microcode updates for several Skylake-based platforms to our OEM customers and industry partners, and we expect to do the same for more platforms in the coming days. We also continue to release beta microcode updates so that customers and partners have the opportunity to conduct extensive testing before we move them into production.
It’s not clear which platforms Intel will target next. However, nearly all of Intel’s processors are potentially impacted by Spectre and Meltdown, so we can likely expect several more microcode updates to go out to partners. For now, if you’re using a laptop or desktop with one of Intel’s Skylake chips, you should keep an eye out for updates from manufacturers as they’re issued in the coming days or weeks.
In addition to Intel’s fixes, other companies were quick to issue updates of their own in the wake of Meltdown and Spectre’s disclosure in early January. Microsoft quickly issued an emergency patch for Windows users, along with a set of updates specific to Surface devices. AMD, despite claiming that the exploits pose a “near-zero risk” to its hardware, announced a set of optional patches as well.