Designed to address flaws in the speculative execution implementation in Intel's processors, most of which are shared with chips from its rivals including AMD and Arm, Intel's patches aim to close the Spectre and Meltdown vulnerabilities which allow unprivileged code to access supposedly-protected memory to steal confidential data including passwords. The flaw has left massive numbers of CPUs potentially susceptible to intrusion and data theft, and NVIDIA's patch indicates that certain GPUs may also be vulnerable.
Chief executive Brian Krzanich said Intel will have updates for at least 90 percent of Intel processors released in the past five years by January 15 US time, with the remaining older parts being covered by the end of the month.
AMD has not clarified the performance impact of the patches on their chips, but unfortunately in this case safety would need to come first.
And chipmaker AMD has been working with Microsoft to resolve problems after the patches caused PCs running on some older AMD Opteron, Athlon and AMD Turion X2 Ultra processors to refuse to boot. Nvidia said that its initial analysis concluded that updating the second Spectre variant (CVE-2017-5715) will require more investigation.
The share price rose about 3.6% in that same two-week period, likely prompting the massive selloff on Intel shares.
Intel shares were down about half a percent to $43.20 in after-hours trading after the announcement.
Meanwhile, the processor manufacturer also said that the performance impact will not be as significant on "average computer users".
Giving yourself "maximum flexibility" means it will be easier to respond to future flaw discoveries, Segars said. Specifically these are Opteron, Athlon and AMD Turion X2 CPUs.
Ultimately the results trend close to the 5% mark overall. To date, no severe hack or data leak has been linked to the vulnerabilites.
Meaning the updates for the Intel computer chip flaw had its own flaws. One Intel customer that provides cloud computing services told Reuters yesterday that if Intel doesn't "step up and do something to make this right then we're going to have to punish them in the marketplace" by turning to another vendor.