Personal computing discussed

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by chuckula
Mon Feb 05, 2018 10:13 pm
Forum: The Back Porch
Topic: RIP John Mahoney
Replies: 4
Views: 386

Re: RIP John Mahoney

My wife is a big Frasier fan too.

I always liked his character because he could always see through Frasier or Miles' egos and acted as a very funny foil.
by chuckula
Fri Feb 02, 2018 1:05 pm
Forum: Mobile Tech
Topic: Flickergate
Replies: 8
Views: 508

Re: Flickergate

It's refreshing to see a hardware failure that has at least a 47% probability of not being our fault.
-- Intel management
by chuckula
Fri Jan 26, 2018 3:02 pm
Forum: Processors
Topic: Let's take a look at the VP9 decoding performance of 20 different processors!
Replies: 31
Views: 2385

Re: Let's take a look at the VP9 decoding performance of 19 different processors!

Interesting stuff. I'd still definitely recommend a hardware decoder for high-resolution and high-framerate video, but it's good to know that modern CPUs can handle VP9 in software if necessary.
by chuckula
Wed Jan 24, 2018 5:29 pm
Forum: The Back Porch
Topic: Legendary Fantasy and Scifi Author Ursula Leguin passed away.
Replies: 10
Views: 561

Re: Legendary Fantasy and Scifi Author Ursula Leguin passed away.

I read a few of her short stories in anthologies and wasn't overly impressed. Questioning gender in the late 60's must have made her a living saint to Leftist circles. Edit: I read “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas," probably in high school. That was a really good short story. I made it thro...
by chuckula
Fri Jan 19, 2018 2:25 pm
Forum: Developer's Den
Topic: C Code Perfect Storm of Stupid
Replies: 64
Views: 3326

Re: C Code Perfect Storm of Stupid

JBI, every time I read one of your threads I'm more glad I never programmed professionally (college degree aside). I would either be encountering the same BS, or (more likely) being one of the clueless programmers thinking they know what they're doing. :lol: Oh, and I neglected to mention another a...
by chuckula
Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:19 pm
Forum: Developer's Den
Topic: C Code Perfect Storm of Stupid
Replies: 64
Views: 3326

Re: C Code Perfect Storm of Stupid

In the developer's defense, it would be nice if the C API didn't require you to select different functions to perform the same operation based solely on thread safety or lack thereof. The C community is loathe to change the way things have always been. The APIs, IMHO, are much more sane in C++, at ...
by chuckula
Fri Jan 19, 2018 9:37 am
Forum: Developer's Den
Topic: C Code Perfect Storm of Stupid
Replies: 64
Views: 3326

Re: C Code Perfect Storm of Stupid

CPUs have gotten fast enough, and compilers good enough, that there is rarely a need to do anything in assembly language any more. C is used pretty much everywhere that assembly language would've been used "back in the day" -- OS kernels, device drivers, embedded systems, real-time. The r...
by chuckula
Thu Jan 18, 2018 4:49 pm
Forum: Developer's Den
Topic: C Code Perfect Storm of Stupid
Replies: 64
Views: 3326

Re: C Code Perfect Storm of Stupid

In the developer's defense, it would be nice if the C API didn't require you to select different functions to perform the same operation based solely on thread safety or lack thereof. The glibc documentation only refers to the thread-safety difference between the two functions in a flag: https://www...
by chuckula
Mon Jan 15, 2018 5:09 pm
Forum: Linux, Unix, and Assorted Madness
Topic: Bit by Meltdown patch? - VirtualBox hard crashes computer
Replies: 12
Views: 1674

Re: Bit by Meltdown patch? - VirtualBox hard crashes computer

OK, I'm on Arch Linux but I just upgraded to 4.9.76 on the host machine and and Virtualbox 5.2.4 booted up my Windows 10 guest VM fine. I have confirmed that KPTI is turned on so I'm Meltdown-protected, although I have not loaded the newest microcode for Spectre just yet due to complaints about it c...
by chuckula
Fri Jan 12, 2018 3:46 pm
Forum: The Back Porch
Topic: TR has fallen victim to Intel's CPU Bug!
Replies: 3
Views: 544

TR has fallen victim to Intel's CPU Bug!

Oh sure, some people thought Intel's side-channel weaknesses were no big deal.

But who knew they could lead to a vicious and unprovoked side-panel attack!

EXHIBIT A!

Image
by chuckula
Thu Jan 11, 2018 9:51 pm
Forum: Processors
Topic: Intel Processor bug incoming?
Replies: 208
Views: 9318

Re: Intel Processor bug incoming?

I just read the Ars article explaining just why there is a performance impact. It stems from the TLB design. For you smarter gerbils, it's TLB especially hard to design (relative to the complexity of designing processors)? AMD had a bug related to the same thing in the Phenom processors. https://ar...
by chuckula
Thu Jan 11, 2018 4:09 pm
Forum: Processors
Topic: Ryzen's Standings Jan 2018
Replies: 18
Views: 1064

Re: Ryzen's Standings Jan 2018

There's only one thing wrong with RyZen: AMD will be launching RyZen+ in March and that is the only event known to modern science that could make RyZen less perfect!

Darn you AMD for innovating at such breakneck speeds!
by chuckula
Thu Jan 11, 2018 1:40 pm
Forum: Mobile Tech
Topic: Drone Talk!
Replies: 26
Views: 2344

Re: Drone Talk!

With CES being in full swing there are plenty of new drones. This one looks interesting not for having high-end technology but for being a $99 drone that provides some degree of user programability. Here's an overview of several new drones at the show including the Tello and higher-end models as well.
by chuckula
Thu Jan 11, 2018 12:58 pm
Forum: Processors
Topic: Intel Processor bug incoming?
Replies: 208
Views: 9318

Re: Intel Processor bug incoming?

Intel published client impact assessment benchmarks, impact is +6 to -21% AFAICT. Obviously, these are close to besst-case as they are all with CPU well above mid-range let alone low-end, and all Skylake or newer. Good news! Ice Lake can be up to 20% faster than Coffee Lake*! * In benchmarks where ...
by chuckula
Wed Jan 10, 2018 10:36 am
Forum: Linux, Unix, and Assorted Madness
Topic: Bit by Meltdown patch? - VirtualBox hard crashes computer
Replies: 12
Views: 1674

Re: Bit by Meltdown patch? - VirtualBox hard crashes computer

Thanks for scaring me! I've updated for Meltdown except for the system that uses Virtualbox to run Windows over Linux.

I would definitely make sure that the kernel modules for Virtualbox have been updated properly as a first step.
by chuckula
Tue Jan 09, 2018 3:50 pm
Forum: Processors
Topic: Intel Processor bug incoming?
Replies: 208
Views: 9318

Re: Intel Processor bug incoming?

PC Perspective ran a few storage tests (including Optane): https://www.pcper.com/news/Storage/Meltdowns-Impact-Storage-Performance-Really-Issue Short version: There's an impact but it's not catastrophically bad and ironically the 900P SSD actually saw a small reduction in latency that I'm not sayin...
by chuckula
Tue Jan 09, 2018 2:51 pm
Forum: Processors
Topic: Intel Processor bug incoming?
Replies: 208
Views: 9318

Re: Intel Processor bug incoming?

PC Perspective ran a few storage tests (including Optane): https://www.pcper.com/news/Storage/Meltdowns-Impact-Storage-Performance-Really-Issue Short version: There's an impact but it's not catastrophically bad and ironically the 900P SSD actually saw a small reduction in latency that I'm not saying...
by chuckula
Mon Jan 08, 2018 10:34 am
Forum: Processors
Topic: Intel Processor bug incoming?
Replies: 208
Views: 9318

Re: Intel Processor bug incoming?

I think some of the FUD being spread around doesn't survive the light of actual testing, and that includes synthetic benchmarks where the KPTI performance hit is supposed to be "catastrophic". For example: https://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=linux-retpoline-benchmarks&a...
by chuckula
Fri Jan 05, 2018 4:56 pm
Forum: Processors
Topic: Intel Processor bug incoming?
Replies: 208
Views: 9318

Re: Intel Processor bug incoming?

I would put it this way: What tasks was the machine performing prior to Meltdown and can it perform them post Meltdown? To be fair, I'm mostly asking "for Science!" This machine represents the worst possible case. For me this box is a guinea pig and it will continue to perform that unplea...
by chuckula
Fri Jan 05, 2018 4:39 pm
Forum: Processors
Topic: Intel Processor bug incoming?
Replies: 208
Views: 9318

Re: Intel Processor bug incoming?

The Meltdown fix does activate, but the CPU lacks PCID and INVPCID instructions. Given that this poor T7500 can't even handle YouTube 1080p decoding, I'm not sure the performance hit the Meltdown patch gives is worth the bit of defense in depth provided. On a machine this old, what useful objective...
by chuckula
Fri Jan 05, 2018 11:49 am
Forum: Processors
Topic: Intel Processor bug incoming?
Replies: 208
Views: 9318

Re: Intel Processor bug incoming?

If I'm understanding things properly, the mitigation for Meltdown is going to have more of a performance impact if your processor doesn't support process context identifiers, which means Haswell and newer, but Wikipedia says it was introduced with Westmere. Maybe just for certain SKUs before Haswel...
by chuckula
Fri Jan 05, 2018 10:36 am
Forum: Processors
Topic: Intel Processor bug incoming?
Replies: 208
Views: 9318

Re: Intel Processor bug incoming?

I JUST UPGRADED AND IT'S SO SLOW THAT THE KEYBOARD SCANNER CAN ONLY TAKE UPPER CASE LETTERS. Ok not really. Kernel 4.14.11 with KPTI enabled seems to be OK so far. I knew you were kidding because capital letters are bigger, and would therefore be slower... Your technical expertise is obviously much...
by chuckula
Fri Jan 05, 2018 9:44 am
Forum: Processors
Topic: Intel Processor bug incoming?
Replies: 208
Views: 9318

Re: Intel Processor bug incoming?

Brief write-up of the major players responses by Ars' Peter Bright: https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2018/01/meltdown-and-spectre-heres-what-intel-apple-microsoft-others-are-doing-about-it/ The ARS article is pretty comprehensive and not particularly mouth-breathing crazy, which is somewhat refreshi...
by chuckula
Thu Jan 04, 2018 8:09 pm
Forum: Processors
Topic: Intel Processor bug incoming?
Replies: 208
Views: 9318

Re: Intel Processor bug incoming?

I JUST UPGRADED AND IT'S SO SLOW THAT THE KEYBOARD SCANNER CAN ONLY TAKE UPPER CASE LETTERS.

Ok not really. Kernel 4.14.11 with KPTI enabled seems to be OK so far.
by chuckula
Thu Jan 04, 2018 4:09 pm
Forum: Graphics
Topic: Nvidia forbids GeForce use in Data Centers...
Replies: 21
Views: 1211

Re: Nvidia forbids GeForce use in Data Centers...

This is a semi-related thread about the use of consumer GeForce cards in server cases. It looks like Nvidia is moving more strongly to prevent this from happening beyond the phyiscal setup of its consumer cards.
by chuckula
Thu Jan 04, 2018 11:49 am
Forum: Processors
Topic: Intel Processor bug incoming?
Replies: 208
Views: 9318

Re: Intel Processor bug incoming?

just brew it! wrote:
Man, this pair of exploits has turned into a major dumpster fire...


Some men just want to watch the CPUs burn leak information.
by chuckula
Thu Jan 04, 2018 11:05 am
Forum: Processors
Topic: Intel Processor bug incoming?
Replies: 208
Views: 9318

Re: Intel Processor bug incoming?

Another idea that would hurt performance but could help mitigate these attacks: Cache flushes that clear out data from other userspace (or kernel space) code so that the only evictions from cache are from your own process context that you presumably can already read anyway. That way any set of cach...
by chuckula
Thu Jan 04, 2018 10:56 am
Forum: Processors
Topic: Intel Processor bug incoming?
Replies: 208
Views: 9318

Re: Intel Processor bug incoming?

If the side-channel attack is based at least in part on looking at timing differences for different sets of operations then two major ways to blunt the attack are to either force different operations to take the same amount of time Not feasible in the case of Spectre. The timing difference is based...
by chuckula
Thu Jan 04, 2018 10:25 am
Forum: Processors
Topic: Intel Processor bug incoming?
Replies: 208
Views: 9318

Re: Intel Processor bug incoming?

AMD claims the performance hit from KPTI is basically non existent and I feel like it's just a matter of time before someone can make Zen cores do things they supposedly shouldn't allow. AMD argues that KPTI isn't that bad for performance and not Intel? I'd be curious to see that statement (not say...
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