Spectre and meltdown are two processor level vulnerabilities. The Intel-specific vulnerability has
been dubbed Meltdown, while the underlying vulnerability is spectre which is
not an intel- specific vulnerability but affects all ARM, AMD and other chip
makers, though spectre is a vulnerability that can be called more serious as it’s
rooted in fundamental processor design flaws these two vulnerabilities
were a result of a change in processing that was supposed to increase the speed
of the processor the processors are made to anticipate what the users are going
to do next and do calculations according to the input in the background, thus
the relevant details are displayed as an output this process is called speculative
execution, this system seems faster to the user.

Kernels in operating systems have
complete control over the entire system, and connect applications to the processor
and the memory. The kernel is responsible for memory management,
process and task management, and disk management. Due to this speculative
execution the programs can go through the kernel access protections allowing
regular apps to read the information of kernel memory Sensitive information – like passwords, or protected files can
easily be accessed.  Linux programmers are coming up with a
solution which separates the kernels memory away from  user processes this is now being called the
kernel page table isolation.

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The problem with the bug fixes is
that this will result in a slowdown from about 5 to 30% depending upon the Intel
processors while linux patches have been coming out in the past months a
windows 10 fix is still not available. This has become a major concern as these
vulnerabilities have been around for about 20 years, allowing programmers to gain access to data all these years

 

The long term fix for these problems would
happen at the processor level, and that is possible only when the next
generation of processors come out and are developed to eliminate this loophole
in the first place. Bu it is quite likely that the next generation processors
will be slower then the ones that have been released recently.