Handmade Hero » Forums » Game » Computer requirements to follow along
jacksonbanan
2 posts
#14140 Computer requirements to follow along
4 months ago Edited by on Jan. 27, 2018, 5:42 p.m.

Hi!

First of all, I have no idea if I'm posting this at the right place but I failed to find a more suitable place. I'm going to get a PC and I was wondering a couple of things. Do I ought to go for 4GB or 8GB ram? Do I ought to get SSD or not? And does anyone have any experience with following along using an AMD graphics card? I have so far only skimmed through the episodes and it appears Casey did something with the whole Intel thing and I assume I'd have to search up AMD stuff instead. Is there anything else that I should take into account? Sorry for the vague language and I'm tired. Anyway, thank you all; hugs and kisses.
mmozeiko
Mārtiņš Možeiko
1670 posts
1 project
#14141 Computer requirements to follow along
4 months ago

There are no real special requirements. Running Windows, VS and real GPU should be enough. With older Intel GPU you'll probably will have some issues with some OpenGL extensions, but latest ones should work fine.

4GB RAM should be fine. 8GB is better. More important is to run 64-bit Windows. With 32-bit one you'll have to do more changes to the code.

As for AMD, you misunderstood what Casey was talking about Intel. What he is doing is using special x86 SIMD instructions introduced by Intel. But all AMDs for like last 15 years or so support these instructions just fine. This is nothing related to GPU. AMD GPU should work fine. Casey was actually using AMD GPU for a long time. He switched to Nvidia only few months ago.
Mór
70 posts
#14142 Computer requirements to follow along
4 months ago

I assume you have heard of the Meltdown and Specter bugs. If not do some research on it and which processors are affected.
mmozeiko
Mārtiņš Možeiko
1670 posts
1 project
#14143 Computer requirements to follow along
4 months ago

What do you mean by that?

Meltdown and Spectre has nothing to do with what computer/hardware you need to follow HandmadeHero.
Mór
70 posts
#14145 Computer requirements to follow along
4 months ago Edited by on Jan. 27, 2018, 10:23 a.m.

If you are paying good money for hardware, its logical to pick the one that has less problems and does the same job.
mmozeiko
Mārtiņš Možeiko
1670 posts
1 project
#14146 Computer requirements to follow along
4 months ago Edited by Mārtiņš Možeiko on Jan. 27, 2018, 11:23 a.m.

You cannot get modern hardware (I'm assuming you are suggesting getting modern hardware because of "paying good money") without being affected by Spectre. So this is irrelevant to discussion about what hw is needed to follow the series.
Mór
70 posts
#14147 Computer requirements to follow along
4 months ago Edited by on Jan. 27, 2018, 11:50 a.m.

You can get hardware that is not affected by Meltdown.

People have a right to know if they are buying other people's problems. That is always relevant. Anyhoo unless someone censors me he now knows and can make an informed decision. He won't say in future, I wish someone at HMH had said something before I spent all that money, because someone did.

P.S.
I am sitting here with a gaming computer I am afraid to go on the Internet with. That affects my following the series and I have buyer's remorse, even though I bought it 2 years ago.
mmozeiko
Mārtiņš Možeiko
1670 posts
1 project
#14148 Computer requirements to follow along
4 months ago Edited by Mārtiņš Možeiko on Jan. 27, 2018, 12:21 p.m.

That doesn't solve anything. Meltdown is just a tiny subset of Spectre. There is no modern CPU that is not broken at this moment. Knowing that Meltdown deoesn't work on some CPUs doesn't in any help you avoid Spectre. All CPUs are vulnerable.

Caring about security when browsing internet is a good practice. The best thing you can do is to avoid to run third party code as much as possible. Then risk is minimal. So don't visit shady sites. Install adblocker (not because you don't want to see ads, but because to avoid running 3rd party code). Don't run untrusted binaries. Then disable JS and you're reasonably good. At least for following HandmadeHero. Which was point of this topic.

As for using PC for gaming, seriously - talking about meltdown/spectre is useless in such context. Running games is already huge risk on its own if we are talking about Windows. Without any meltdown/spectre. Because most of games are closed source, so who knows what kind of remote exploits they have. Here's a good example of this from few days ago.
forkingpaths
Martin Fouilleul
44 posts
1 project

Sound Engineer / Programmer

#14149 Computer requirements to follow along
4 months ago

You can learn more about Meltdown and Spectre here :


Which systems are affected by Meltdown?

Desktop, Laptop, and Cloud computers may be affected by Meltdown. More technically, every Intel processor which implements out-of-order execution is potentially affected, which is effectively every processor since 1995 (except Intel Itanium and Intel Atom before 2013). We successfully tested Meltdown on Intel processor generations released as early as 2011. Currently, we have only verified Meltdown on Intel processors. At the moment, it is unclear whether AMD processors are also affected by Meltdown. According to ARM, some of their processors are also affected.

Which systems are affected by Spectre?

Almost every system is affected by Spectre: Desktops, Laptops, Cloud Servers, as well as Smartphones. More specifically, all modern processors capable of keeping many instructions in flight are potentially vulnerable. In particular, we have verified Spectre on Intel, AMD, and ARM processors.

Which means you have practically no choice when it comes to buying recent hardware. OS patches try to mitigate some of these issues, and you can of course limit your exposure to such threats with good habits (visit only trusted sites, block ads, don't click on suspicious links or install untrusted software, etc...), but that's all you can do. We're probably left with these breaches for several years, because this won't be properly addressed before a new generation of hardware fix these issues.
This is of course a great concern for everyone, but as mmozeiko said it is not related at all to HMH requirements.

Martin
Mór
70 posts
#14150 Computer requirements to follow along
4 months ago

I am not running other people's games on this machine. I just want to do my own programming, follow HMH, etc, and do research on-line without any worries.

Here is what I am reading, from what they say Meltdown is more scary:

https://www.itwire.com/security/8...dibly-bad-openbsd-s-de-raadt.html

Meltdown removes the barrier between user applications and sensitive parts of the operating system while Spectre, which is also reportedly found in some AMD and ARM processors, can trick vulnerable applications into leaking the contents of their memory.

"There are papers about the risky side-effects of speculative loads – people knew, and as a result no other vendor's chips does speculative loads (Meltdown – Intel Only) in a significant way," said de Raadt who heads a project that has an enviable reputation in that it has had just two remotely exploitable bugs in its default install since it started in 1996.

"Intel engineers attended the same conferences as other company engineers, and read the same papers about performance enhancing strategies – so it is hard to believe they ignored the risky aspects. I bet they were instructed to ignore the risk," he said.

"It is a scandal, and I want repaired processors for free. I don't care if they are 30% slower, as long as they work to spec. Intel has been exceedingly clever to mix Meltdown (speculative loads) with a separate issue (Spectre). This is pulling the wool over the public's eyes."

Given that, his barely suppressed anger at the security snafus revealed last week was understandable. "I am terrified of where this leads. Intel architecture is already very inconsistent, complex, and difficult to deal with," he said.

"Suddenly the trickiest parts of a kernel need to do backflips to cope with problems deep in the micro-architecture. This tricky component of kernel software is now becoming more complicated than it was in the past. We are used to hardware hiding the complexity and providing a uniform safe view."

De Raadt said there would be a "big price to pay for the complexity of handling exposure to the micro-architecture down the road, mark my words".

"Decades old trap/fault software is being replaced by 10-20 operating systems, and there are going to be mistakes made."
jacksonbanan
2 posts
#14152 Computer requirements to follow along
4 months ago Edited by on Jan. 27, 2018, 5:45 p.m.

Yeah, I did hear about the meltdown or whatever. I wasn't sure how bad it would personally affect me but I'll definitely take that into account. Thank you all for helping me out. But is it necessary for the computer to have SSD or is HDD fine? What's the difference? And I've heard AMD CPU's tend to get hot very easily
mmozeiko
Mārtiņš Možeiko
1670 posts
1 project
#14153 Computer requirements to follow along
4 months ago Edited by Mārtiņš Možeiko on Jan. 27, 2018, 8:38 p.m.

Mór
I am not running other people's games on this machine.
Well you said you have gaming computer. Typically that means its for playing games. If you are not, then no worries. Just be safe when browsing Internet. This is relevant even without spectre/meltdown, because who knows how many exploits are there which are not yet discovered by security reasearchers.

Sure, meltdown is easier to exploit, but Spectre is harder. But that's still should be scary. Security doesn't work like that. Even if there is slightest change to exploit it, the attackers will do that. Even if it is super hard - they'll find the way. And currently there is no easy way to avoid Spectre.

But is it necessary for the computer to have SSD or is HDD fine? What's the difference?
HDD is fine. SSD is better. You can do everything in HH fine with just a HDD. Afaik Casey is still using HDD - since beginning of HH.

SSDs typically are 4-5x faster than HDD for large file reads/writes. And crazy faster for small file reads/writes due to fast they don't need to seek. NVMe SSDs can be even 10-20x faster than regular HDDs. If you can afford, get smaller SSD for your OS and important software. And leave HDD for big data storage. Putting SSD in older computer/laptop gives significant boost in perceived performance.