Intel is having a lousy day after revealing a fundamental flaw in their architecture design; one not shared by AMD chips.  It turns out that many common programs are able to read the protected memory sections of the chips kernel, something commonly known as a very bad thing.  The flaw exists in both Linux and Windows and is serious enough that a patch has been released, which you should install.

However initial reports show the patch has a negative effect on performance, with a worst case scenario showing quite a performance delta.  The thing to keep in mind is that we do not have many data points yet, more testing needs to be done to determine exactly how much performance degradation will be experienced.  We will conduct our own testing here, with a focus on storage which could see the most degradation, especially the newly released Intel Optane.  You can also expect that Amazon, Azure and other hosting companies will be releasing information on the effect this has on their systems, which will give us a good overall view of what this patch will do.

The easiest way to ensure you are not going to experience this issue is to pick up a Ryzen or Threadripper, of course.  The Inquirer offers more insight here.

"A fundamental design flaw in Intel's processor chips has forced a significant redesign of the Linux and Windows kernels to defang the chip-level security bug."

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