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where to buy a new puter? some style and spec issues

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Steven Avery:
A Brief Peek Into the Fascinating World of Side Channel Attacks
Emily Gray-Fow

"The only way to fully protect against side channel attacks is to use your digital devices in a room buried deep underground, accessed by a long tunnel with shielded doors, lined with a Faraday cage, and running off of your own portable power supply."

Not sure this is a refurbished PC issue, need more info if it will affect my buying decision!

Stoic Joker:
Given all of the side channel attack issues, I'd avoid referbs these days -Stoic Joker (November 20, 2019, 06:57 AM)
--- End quote ---

Presumably this some real low-level OS or firmware malware?  Hard to detect.

Do we have any reports of this happening in the major refurb channels.

-Steven Avery (November 21, 2019, 10:21 AM)
--- End quote ---

I was referring to Specter, Meltdown, and friends. The original S&M patches took quite a few of the older machines right down to their knees performance wise...other's could not even be patched. And now - almost 2 years later - there are still new variants on this theme (like row-hammering) coming out constantly. So for my money, I'd go with a latest generation CPU in the hope of being able to patch it, without crippling it, when the next wave of shenanigans hits the wild.

Steven Avery:
Spectre and Meltdown explained: What they are, how they work, what's at risk

Interesting, so with Intel you would recommend an i7 (recent generations) or i9, with AMD you have to check.  The high-end refurbs can be fairly modern, but this would be a reason to definitely avoid, e.g. fourth generation i5 and even many newer than that.

I was thinking about the really low level "control" malware, but this is different, the actual fixes to the fundamental problem really hurt the chips performance, newer chips are more likely to be designed robustly, at least for a year or two!


This site can help with chip performance comparison, but they should add the original release date, here is an example:

ADDED: Oh, they give the date, the quarter released.


Steven Avery:
Slickdeals does a good job of giving an overview of the current discounts, omits Overstock and some others

TechBargains is also interesting




HP Elitedesk for 560 on Bestbuy

Similar Dell Optiplex for 630


Dell Business Desktop deals



New Egg




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