Back in January, we covered Google Project Zero's disclosure of massive CPU security flaws Spectre and Meltdown. If you've never heard of these vulnerabilities before, here's the gist: Spectre and Meltdown are two serious CPU security vulnerabilities that allow hackers to steal personal data from computers, mobile devices and servers without a given machine's owner ever realizing it.
While these flaws apply to AMD and Intel users alike, the latter's users have been hit the hardest due to fundamental flaws in CPU hardware manufacturing. The company has rolled out patches for these vulnerabilities but at a potentially significant performance cost.
Later, it was revealed the patches Intel released were causing some systems to reboot, prompting the company to advise their customers against installing them until the issue could be ironed out.
Fortunately, Intel has some good news on that front:
...we identified the root cause of the reboot issue affecting the initial Broadwell and Haswell microcode updates. Since then, we’ve been focused on developing and validating updated microcode solutions for those and other impacted platforms.
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.
Ultimately, these updates will be made available in most cases through OEM firmware updates.
"I can't emphasize how critical it is for everyone to always keep their systems up-to-date," Intel Data Center Group executive VP Navin Shavoy adds. "Research tells us there is frequently a substantial lag between when people receive updates and when they actually implement them. In today's environment, that must change."
If your machine was one of the devices affected by these random reboots, it sounds like an end might be in sight soon. Intel didn't offer a specific ETA for non-Skylake microcode updates but the company says they should be arriving sometime in the "coming days."