Microsoft Pushes Windows 10 Build 16299.214 With Meltdown-Spectre Fix For Unbootable AMD PCs

Windows 10
We don't think that we'd be out of line if we said the revelation of the Meltdown and Spectre chip vulnerabilities and the resultant mitigations have been somewhat of a disaster. It's bad enough that the vulnerabilities exist at all, but the fixes have resulted in in some nasty side effects. AMD users were some of the earliest victims of Meltdown-Spectre mitigations, and now Microsoft is addressing the issue head-on.

Microsoft yesterday issued its third cumulative update for the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update (version 1709) for the month of January. The update takes Windows 10 to build 16299.214 and resolve issues in KB4056892 that was pushed to customers in early January to help fix Spectre and Meltdown exploits. KB4056892 caused many AMD systems to become unbootable. Microsoft at the time said that it was "working with AMD to resolve this issue and resume Windows OS security updates to the affected AMD devices via Windows Update and WSUS as soon as possible."

As a precaution, Microsoft pulled the update to spare additional users from the pain of a bricked PC. At the same time, Microsoft threw AMD under the bus, writing, "After investigating, Microsoft has determined that some AMD chipsets do not conform to the documentation previously provided to Microsoft to develop the Windows operating system mitigations to protect against the chipset vulnerabilities known as Spectre and Meltdown."

meltdown spectre

In addition to relief for AMD users, there are also a number of other fixes included in KB4056892. Here is the full changeling:

  • Addresses a compatibility issue where colors are distorted when the system is connected to displays that support wide color gamut.
  • Addresses a condition where a second monitor that is connected to legacy AMD display adapters flashes after waking from sleep.
  • Addresses issue that causes delays when switching keyboard languages using Alt+Shift.
  • Addresses compatibility issues when rendering certain closed captions or subtitle formats during video playback.
  • Addresses issue where the Microsoft Edge Allow Extension Group Policy for the disabled state was not working.
  • Provides additional protections for 32-bit (x86) versions of Windows 10, version 1709.
  • Resolves the issue reported by some customers on a small subset of older AMD processors where the processor entered an unbootable state after installing January 3, 2018—KB4056892 (OS Build 16299.192).

KB4056892 will be downloaded and installed automatically by Windows, but if you are incessant about installing it right away, you can manually download the update here.