If, like me, you wanted to know what retpoline is, and why it matters.
Linus Torvalds has hit the Go button on version 4.15 of the Linux kernel, blaming the Meltdown and Spectre CPU design flaws for the delay and warning of more pain to come as fixes trickle out for silicon architectures. “This obviously was not a pleasant release cycle, with the whole meltdown/spectre thing coming in in the …
Thanks to a really, really small patchset in the distribution itself, it is trivially simple to build my own Linux kernel straight from www.kernel.org and with my own configuration. Even better, thanks to following GCC releases really fast, my kernel is now reporting this: "Mitigation: Full generic reptoline". And I am running 4.14.15 - but I bet the distribution will make kernel 4.15 available in the next few weeks (or I can just roll my own - not tempted though, just yet)
I am not living under the impression that my computer is not vulnerable to spectre v1. But there is very little I can do about it. I am simply happy that living on the bleeding edge of both kernel and compiler development has, at least once, given me some real benefits. Few distributions make this easy and most are lagging behind, sometimes quite significantly.
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