Microsoft has updated several microcode updates for the company's Windows 10 operating system that push so-called microcode updates to devices the update is installed on which protect against attacks targeting Spectre Variant 2.
Spectre and Meltdown are vulnerabilities that affect a wide range of devices. Microsoft released patches in early January 2018 but they caused all kinds of issues on some devices running Windows. To make matters worse, manufacturers such as Intel had to provide updates as well and these needed to be installed to protect systems effectively.
Microsoft released KB4090007, KB4091663, KB4091664 and KB4091666 in March 2018 but the initial versions of the updates did not support all processors that Intel created microcode updates for.
Microsoft lists all processors that the patches support. The April 24, 2018 update adds support for the following processor families: Broadwell DE A1, Broadwell DE V1, Broadwell DE V2,V3, Broadwell DE Y0, Broadwell H 43e, Broadwell U/Y, Broadwell Xeon E3, Haswell (including H, S), Xeon E3, Haswell Perf Halo, Haswell Server E, EP, EP4S, Haswell ULT (thanks Deskmodder and Günter Born)
Skylake, Kaby Lake and Coffee Lake processor families were supported already.
Tip: Run InSpectre if you want to know if microcode updates are available. That is a lot easier than having to figure that out on your own.
The microcode updates from Intel protect various versions of Windows 10 from attacks but they are not available on Windows Update or WSUS yet.
Microsoft published the updates on the Microsoft Update Catalog website from where they can be downloaded and installed.
Here are the manual download links:
Note that there is no update for Windows 10 version 1511.
Windows 10 users and administrators may want to download the updates and install them on machines provided that they are powered by processors that microcode updates are available for.
Yesterday's microcode updates cover most processor families that Intel wants to support with microcode updates. If you check the master list that Intel released, you will notice that some products are still missing and that some (older) processors won't receive the updates at all.
It is likely that Microsoft will update the updates to integrate support for processor families that are not supported yet. I suggest you monitor the relevant KB article pages so that you know when updates are released.
Now You: are your systems protected against Meltdown or Spectre attacks?
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