Firmware status to confirm if a device is still vulnerable to Spectre and Meltdown bugs because a firmware update hasn't been installed. In addition, Microsoft has a specific requirement for anti-malware software makers to certify that their products aren't making "unsupported calls into Windows kernel memory" before it will release Windows updates to systems to address the Meltdown and Spectre attack methods.
Microsoft has announced a free tool for Meltdown and Spectre assessment.
Given the complexity of dealing with patches from multiple sources, compatibility issues, and Intel's problematic firmware fixes, it's not surprising that Microsoft has found customers demanding help to check the status of devices on enterprise networks, which could easily number thousands or tens of thousands of devices.More news: Arizona State University creates cancer-fighting nanorobots
Windows Analytics is a subscription-based service originally designed for public cloud management tasks. The checking tool is available for fully updated versions of Windows 7 through Windows 10. The PC's antivirus will be checked to make sure that it's compatible with the required Windows updates.
Windows Operating System Security Update Status: This Windows Analytics insight will indicate which Windows security update is running on any device and if any of these updates have been disabled.
As you probably know by now, plugging those holes currently requires a CPU microcode (firmware) update, an OS update, and the installed anti-virus software being compatible with the latest Windows updates. Moreover, it lists if the firmware includes specific protections required by CPU manufacturers.More news: Russia Threatens to Block YouTube and Instagram, After Complaints From an Oligarch
It's worth noting that these firmware updates could cause performance issues, which will have the greatest impact on systems that have Intel's fourth-generation "Haswell" chips or earlier.
Windows Analytics is a free tool that Microsoft offers to businesses, and that can provide an in-depth summary of a company's internal fleet of computers. "We will be adding other CPU (chipset) partners' data as it becomes available to Microsoft", Microsoft stated in a blog post.
This is one of the reasons Windows Analytics has been updated to check for these two recent high-profile vulnerabilities.More news: China and Philippines discuss joint projects in South China Sea