Tuesday, October 29


Daily News Stuff 29 October 2019

Better Off Alone Edition

Tech News

  • Intel's Core i9-9990XE can hit 5.0GHz on all 14 cores.  (AnandTech)

    It runs at 255W and costs around $2000 if you're lucky enough to find one.  They're sold to partners only by special auction and in limited quantities.

    Or you could buy a 32 core Threadripper.

  • Intel's Core i9-9900KS can hit 5.0GHz on all 8 cores.  (Tom's Hardware)

    It runs at 127W and costs $513, will be on sale for only two months, and carries a one-year warranty.

    Or you could buy a 12 core Ryzen.

  • The US Senate has put a hold on a terrible horrible no good very bad House copyright act.  (TechDirt)

    The House bill legislated a streamlined copyright infringement process that could slap people with up to $30,000 in penalties without messy technicalities like due process.

    Ron Wyden and Rand Paul, thanks.

  • Begun, the 10nm era has. (AnandTech)

    Only four years late.

  • Ryzen 3000 had a bug in a specific random number function. AMD pushed out a BIOS patch. Motherboard manufactureres released updated BIOS files.  Only some of them forgot to actually apply the patch.  (Ars Technica)

    So even if you are completely up to date you might still have the bug.

    The bug can do nasty things to Linux security tools, which check that the random number they get from the CPU is sufficiently random, and keep asking for more random bits until they're satisfied.  If the bug is present and unpatched the number never gets random enough, so the system completely locks up.

  • On the other hand, if you have the patch, the problem is solved.  That's a lot less true for Intel's speculative execution bugs.  (ZDNet)

    If you're running untrusted code on an Intel server (shared hosting, virtual servers) just disable hyperthreading already.  It's the interesection between speculative execution and hardware threading that produces most of the bugs, and you can't turn off speculative execution.

Video of the Day

Disclaimer: Dogs is dogs, and cats is dogs, and squirrels in cages is parrots, but this here turkle is a hinsect, and he won't cost you nothing.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 09:59 PM | Comments (6) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
Post contains 355 words, total size 4 kb.

1 A couple of points about that 14-core monster:  in the comments people talk about them being used mainly by high-frequency traders, who are desperate to minimize latency ("the faster you can respond to incoming information, the faster you can make trades, and thus beat your competitors.")  Theoretically a Threadripper wouldn't be a suitable  replacement for that specific use case, because it's not as fast.

The article mentions the price being $2800.  I pointed out in the comments that there's been a price cut (to the $2000 you mention) but they haven't updated the article.

Posted by: Rick C at Wednesday, October 30 2019 01:08 AM (Iwkd4)

2 Re: 9900KS vs 3900X:  I do have one game I play (Guild Wars 2) that has a specific issue--too much client rendering on one CPU thread that leads to framerate plunges in world bosses (in my case, one world boss can drop my framerate from 90FPS to 15.  On an RTX 2070.)  The devs acknowledged that single-core speed is really the only way to get improvement without a rewrite of that part of the code.
That makes a sidegrade from my 3600X to a 9900KS really tempting, but it probably wouldn't really be worth the money.

Posted by: Rick C at Wednesday, October 30 2019 01:11 AM (Iwkd4)

3 Nice to see a good explanation of the RDRAND bug.  I'd heard about it at launch but never what it was.  That's a pretty impressive one.  As always, there's a Relevant XKCD: (hopefully I'll get the BBCode right, it's copied from the help)  https://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/random_number.png

Posted by: Rick C at Wednesday, October 30 2019 01:16 AM (Iwkd4)

4 The 9900KS would be an interesting niche part, if it weren't for the two-month lifespan and one-year warranty.  It's not overly expensive for what it delivers.

The same for the 9990XE if it were a regular product with guaranteed availability, although costing twice as much as the new 18 core Cascade Lake X part makes it very niche.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at Wednesday, October 30 2019 08:55 AM (PiXy!)

5 If you want 9900KS performance without risking the silicon lottery you could get a 9900K from Silicon Lottery, I guess.
I'd need some way of verifying GW2 would get better frame rates before I'd replace my existing system--for example, someone running that CPU with an RTX 2070, and checking their frame rates during a particular world boss, to see how it matched my system.

Posted by: Rick C at Wednesday, October 30 2019 09:15 AM (Iwkd4)

6 BTW, unrelated:  Other Linus has a video on Floatplane (it usually takes about 5 days for videos to show up on Youtube--this one is called "10 Gigabit Networking for my ENTIRE Hous!") about him upgrading his home network to 10GB Ethernet.  He got a MicroTik managed switch.  It's an enterprise-class device, so it has two power supplies (and a heat pipe inside!) and 12 10GB ports.  What might interest you is that 4 of the 12 ports are shared with 4 SFP+ ports.  They also had a pair of $10000 Fluke testers (borrowed! quote from Linus: "I'm not paying for these, am I?") to verify the cables are actually working at the proper speed.
Here's an Amazon link that probably has an affiliate link in it.  It's 540USD.

Posted by: Rick C at Wednesday, October 30 2019 09:20 AM (Iwkd4)

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Apple pies are delicious. But never mind apple pies. What colour is a green orange?

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