Just a couple videos showing a sneak peak into the steps involved in assembling a motherboard that I find interesting:
LE: Apparently the story is a bluff since this SUPER SECRET WTF OMGGMG SHIT discovery has been publicly known and used for at least 6 years now(look for 0x9c5a203a at the beginning). So, El Reg, you suck for not verifying stories before publishing them. AMD Rocks!
According to The Register a super secret password protected on-chip debugger has been discovered in all AMD chips since Athlon XP. The debugger seems to be activated once a specific password value(0x9C5A203A) has been set in a certain register(EDI to be more exact, a heavily used register).
I can’t help but wonder where exactly software security will stand on AMD CPUs, once you can access and control chip functionality by just setting a certain value in a register(free ring0 access huh?, local root?..nice, what about system?..even nicer). What about that value making it into that register by chance? Slow CPU operation? Deal with it. 🙂
Though i am afraid my assumptions are just heuristic since one needs more details and insight into this issue before making this into a statement. Quote from Czernobyl(the discoverer):
Amidst a ton of comments, I’ve seen some somber interrogations about security. IMO what is described herein does not pose new security problems per se; after all MSRs and Control Registers aren’t accessible except from ring zero. Nor are the Host’s CRs and MSRs accessible from a properly designed Virtual machine. I doubt the newly disclosed features will open security risks that were not already present due to poor OS and/or virtualization systems designs… (end of note).
Excerpt from The Register article:
A hardware hacker has discovered a secret debugging feature hidden in all AMD chips made in the past decade.
The password-protected debugger came as a shock to reverse-engineers who have hungered for an on-chip mechanism for performing conditional and direct-hardware breakpoint operations. Although AMD has built the firmware-controlled feature into all chips since the Athlon XP, the company kept it a closely guarded secret that was only disclosed late last week by a hacker who goes by the name Czernobyl.
Read this fine analysis of Raidon Staray-S Series hardware encrypted hdds on Heise Security:
So next time think again, read about it, investigate it before buying such a hdd and trusting it with your most precious data.
Myka is shipping an embedded Linux device that downloads, stores, and plays BitTorrent media files on an attached TV. Available in 80GB, 160GB, and 500GB models, plus a Developer’s Edition with a 1TB disk, the Myka appliances offload BitTorrent peer-to-peer duties from a PC.
For the hard core pirates out there! Arrgh!
The netbook has taken off over the last year, but fifteen years of drama preceded the current success. In Part I of The State of the Netbook, Ars explores the surprisingly long history of the “new” form factor.