During the recent update of documentation, Intel revealed a problem, which was not known until then. The problem is present in every Skylake and Kaby Lake processors and also Xeon v5 and v6. As described by Debian operating system developers, who managed to isolate the issue and determine the condition of its occurrence, the processors exhibit dangerous and unpredictable behaviour when Hyper-Threading is activated.
Hyper-Threading is Intel’s proprietary simultaneous multithreading feature that improves parallel computation in microprocessors. Usually, an operating system recognises two logical cores for each physical processor core. Hyper-Threading allows to increase the number of logical cores and, hence, drastically improve parallel computation speed. Intel reports 15-30% better performance in comparison with an identical processor without this feature being activated.
After the problem was detected, Intel made an urgent announcement advising the users to deactivate Hyper-Threading in BIOS or UEFI. If the feature is kept enabled, users may experience unpredictable behaviour of programs and OS, distortion or even loss of data. It was highlighted, that the problem is not exclusive to Debian or other Linux systems. It can appear in any OS including Windows.
Intel is currently working on the solution. At the moment only Skylake family received the patch. In order to resolve the issue user must update BIOS/UEFI when the appropriate patch is released. To find out how to do this contact London computer repair service.