Discovered last year and kept secret until a satisfactory remedy has been found, a microprocessor design error perpetuated in the chips delivered by Intel, AMD, ARM and other companies since 1991 is so severe that patches created to covering the resulting security vulnerabilities can only act by means that reduce device performance
Fortunately, tests so far have shown that performance drops are negligible in common applications, including PC games. However, there are situations where performance decline is noticeable, such as cloud storage applications.
Free of charge for the Windows platform, the inSpectre utility first verifies if patches needed to correct Meltdown and Specter vulnerabilities have been installed and if their PC performance has been diminished
According to security expert Steve Gibson, the author of the application, vulnerable PCs need both software patches and BIOS updates to get full protection against Specter and Meltdown threats
Complicating the situation, recent generation PCs have facilities that improve performance impact. However, security benefits are more difficult to digest in PCs with older processors, and performance loss can affect users' productivity. This is where InSpectre comes in, allowing the PC to be restored to the state before the installation of the Meltdown and Specter paths at the cost of canceling their security benefits.