Errata prompts Intel to disable TSX in Haswell, early Broadwell CPUs



The TSX instructions built into Intel's Haswell CPU cores haven't become widely used by everyday software just yet, but they promise to make certain types of multithreaded applications run much faster than they can today. Some of the savviest software developers are likely building TSX-enabled software right about now.

Unfortunately, that work may have to come to a halt, thanks to a bug—or "errata," as Intel prefers to call them—in Haswell's TSX implementation that can cause critical software failures.

I believe my friend David Kanter was first to report this problem via a tweet the other day. Intel revealed the news of the erratum to a group of journalists during briefings in Portland last week. I was among those in attendance and was able to talk with Intel architects about the situation.

The TSX problem was apparently discovered by a software developer outside of Intel, and the company then confirmed the erratum through its own testing. Errata of this magnitude aren't often discovered this late in the life of a CPU core...

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