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Dell N5010: trying to update microcode
#1
I originally posted the below in the general help section, but I thought I might get better results here as it is related to CPU microcode.  I'm not trying to expand CPU functionality, but I am trying to manually update the microcode for security.

I tried to add the updated microcode for my i7 640m processsor since Dell isn't applying the updates. The latest microcode has a Spectre patch I wanted to apply.

I booted into DOS and used AFUDOS  3.07.01 command /O to backup my current BIOS.

I used MMTOOL 4.50.0.23 to insert the 06-25-05 file from Intel located here.  There was only one other microcode listed under the CPU Patch tab, but it was for a different CPU ID.  Which seems odd as my i7 640m was an upgrade, but I haven't had any issues with it. Did I need to delete that other microcode?

I then booted back into DOS and flashed with AFUDOS using the /P /B /K command per this guide.  That gave me a ROM ID does not match BIOS ID error, so I added /X to the command.  That happily bricked my laptop.

I have a hardware flasher so I can recover it, but I'd prefer to hardware flash it with a bios file patched with the latest micro code.  Before I do that I could use some help determining where I went wrong.

Thanks in advance for any help.

This is my backup file.

This is my modified file.
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#2
Quote:determining where I went wrong.

Okay, now we'll think. I open your backup file using the mmtool program using different versions and I see the following:
   
Which can I make a preliminary conclusion?
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#3
woowoo, you changed size of microcode's section and didn't aligned lengths of each microcode by 0x800. I think that's the reason.
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#4
(06-11-2018, 11:20 PM)LLC Wrote:
Quote:determining where I went wrong.

Okay, now we'll think. I open your backup file using the mmtool program using different versions and I see the following:

Which can I make a preliminary conclusion?

Thank you LLC.  I am seeing the same thing now that I am using 5.007.  However 5.007 isn't letting me remove or add microcode.  Is there something else I need to do in that version of MMTool to enable editing?
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#5
(06-12-2018, 02:09 AM)DeathBringer Wrote: woowoo, you changed size of microcode's section and didn't aligned lengths of each microcode by 0x800. I think that's the reason.

Thank you DeathBringer. I think part of the problem was I was using an out dated version of MMTool like LLC mentioned. 

For the alignment you've mentioned do I need to check something in a hex editor to see?

In the meantime I got a little impatient and removed the bios chip and tried manually flashing.  This time I edited the full bios image by deleting the one micro code I could see in MMTool 4.50 and adding the micro code I wanted.  It works, but InSepctre from Gibson Research Corporation http://www.grc.com is still saying I'm not protected. 

This is the link to the full 4mb rom I modified and hard flashed.
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#6
This bios was type aptio 4 ,so open it from mmtool 4.53.xxxxx is correct.
DeathBringer said was right ,you can made some mod for ucode module  ,it will show normally on cpu path from mmtool .

Test my mod and open it on mmtool 4.5 version ,then going to [CPU path] tab.
http://www.mediafire.com/file/jyu8jvuuc0...0.rom/file

===========
If ME need to update??

771 to 775 micro code modify >>>click

My bios unlock >>> click

donate me >>>click


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#7
genius239, in your modified file, ucodes is not aligned at 0x800, and include old version patch of same cpuid and platform. So alignment is necessary or not to get update the cpu patch (when you need to actually load not the first records), is it something depending on the bios version? Has anyone checked? I have not found a free download for version mmtool 4.53, it lists the sequence with no alignments already as in version 5.00.0007 and have ability to add/remove patchs ?
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#8
Sorry let you misconstrue ,my really mean is ,this ucode module need to modify.

771 to 775 micro code modify >>>click

My bios unlock >>> click

donate me >>>click


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#9
(06-12-2018, 08:11 PM)woowoo Wrote: ... and adding the micro code I wanted.  It works, but InSepctre from Gibson Research Corporation http://www.grc.com is still saying I'm not protected.
You added old version: 0x04, date - 06/28/2013, but you need new one: 0x06, date - 01/23/2018.

(06-13-2018, 01:11 AM)LLC Wrote: So alignment is necessary or not to get update the cpu patch (when you need to actually load not the first records), is it something depending on the bios version? Has anyone checked?
I've checked - alignment is necessary in this BIOS.
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#10
(06-13-2018, 12:09 PM)DeathBringer Wrote:
(06-12-2018, 08:11 PM)woowoo Wrote: ... and adding the micro code I wanted.  It works, but InSepctre from Gibson Research Corporation http://www.grc.com is still saying I'm not protected.
You added old version: 0x04, date - 06/28/2013, but you need new one: 0x06, date - 01/23/2018.

(06-13-2018, 01:11 AM)LLC Wrote: So alignment is necessary or not to get update the cpu patch (when you need to actually load not the first records), is it something depending on the bios version? Has anyone checked?
I've checked - alignment is necessary in this BIOS.

Thank you for all of your help with this DeathBringer.  Where did you get the file you linked from 1/23/18?  Intel's page links to a file dated 4/25/2018, but when I loaded it in MMTool it showed 6/28/13 like you pointed out. I thought it might have just been a problem with MMtool. 

Edit, I just looked at the link and realized platomav is hosting a repository of all of them. 

I'll have to research how to do the alignment you're talking about.  I'll post another rom once I figure it out before I flash.
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