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Microcode update on AMD K8 useless?
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Vrenn
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 07, 2018 2:09 pm    Post subject: Microcode update on AMD K8 useless? Reply with quote

During the whole meltdown and Spectre discussion I was to read in the issue microcode-updates.
On my Haswell-laptop they are working since a long time (bakeing in with this intel guide). At least it is updated to the 0x22, not the 0x23 (might follow?)

But on my trusted and solid working Desktop an AMD Athlon X2 5200+ K8 the corresponding amd guide tells me to include "amd-ucode/microcode_amd.bin amd-ucode/microcode_amd_fam15h.bin amd-ucode/microcode_amd_fam16h.bin"
I have a K8 family 15. But on boot dmesg has no output of "grep microcode". and the microcode-revision stays at 0x62.

easylinuxtipsproject tells me that K8 makes no sense, can somebody confirm this?
I don't even find a list of microcodes that should be applied.

Thanks for your wisdom.

ps: linux-firmware used at date of post is 20180103-r1
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Jaglover
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 07, 2018 3:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's a good question. K8 is family 15, 0Fh in hex. So I'd say 15h and 16h updates do not apply. You could try with amd-ucode/microcode_amd.bin and see if anything changes. I have a A6 (family 16, 10h in hex) here. When I look at dmesg I see
Code:
[    1.299465] microcode: CPU0: patch_level=0x03000027
[    1.300304] microcode: CPU1: patch_level=0x03000027
[    1.309326] microcode: CPU2: patch_level=0x03000027
[    1.309965] microcode: CPU3: patch_level=0x03000027
[    1.310621] microcode: Microcode Update Driver: v2.2.

Currently I'm at loss, I have no idea where it comes from, I have not configured any microcode updates on this box. I'm trying to build a new kernel with microcode_amd.bin now ...

Haven't used AMD processors for more than 10 years, no experience.

Edit: There is no change with microcode_amd.bin built into kernel.
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Ant P.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 07, 2018 5:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Those lines are showing the old version; if your CPU has an update it'll also show lines for the new versions with the word "updated" somewhere.
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Jaglover
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 07, 2018 6:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ahh, I see. Thanks. It may be loaded by UEFI firmware then.
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Vrenn
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 07, 2018 8:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just amd-ucode/microcode_amd.bin made no change and I doubt that the vendor of the 2006/2007 bought PC will release any BIOS update ;-)
I'll try the patches for the kernel. As for now the page isolation made no slowdown in compile-time, splat showed me.

The machine isn't something you have because of speed. Stable it has to be, and it is.
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