Feeds

AMD chip bug snares Linux users

And how to fix it

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

An old bug in AMD’s Athlon family of chips may still be snaring Linux users.

Affected users will need to be running a 2.4 kernel, an AGP and an Athlon or Duron CPU. At cause is a compatibility issue with Intel’s 4MB page size. (x86 processors have used 4k pages, ever since paging was introduced in the 80386).

AMD issued a patch for Windows users in Fall 2000, with an accompanying PDF [13k].

But all the patch is, is a one-line registry change, described here, that only disables the expanded page size. And not all Pentium-specific instructions.

For Linux users, it's a one line workaround, too. Pass the line “append mem=nopentium” at boot time (via your boot loader of choice), to disable all Pentium specific instructions.

French distro Gentoo reported this yesterday, and found itself Slashdotted into the netherworld. It's still down, as we write. ®

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?