3 Replies Latest reply on Feb 3, 2011 6:38 AM by

    Intel Sandy Bridge Kill Switch


      I tend to upgrade both of my laptops on a 9-12 month cycle. I'm concerned about the new kill switch / Anti-Theft 3.0 that will be included in the upcoming Sandy Bridge architecture.


      First of all, I have no need for this and I don't want to pay extra for something I don't need or want.


      Second, as long as something like a kill switch exists at the hardware level, there is the potential for abuse. I don't want the possibility for remote bricking of any computer I own to exist and I will not be purchasing a laptop with Sandy Bridge if this security hardware is not optional.


      Finally, Anti-Theft 3.0 is a lame "security" feauture as far as I understand. My main concern, if somebody were to steal my laptop, is that they gain access to my data. All the thief has to do is pop the hard drive out, regardless of whether the laptop has been remotely bricked or not, and then they can start attempting to retrieve the data. The chances are slim that I will be able to retrieve such a laptop once it has been stolen. I run Linux (Fedora and Ubuntu) on my laptops and I use encryption, so I'm not overly concerned about data theft. I doubt that Anti-Theft 3.0 would even be effective as a deterrent.


      My question is whether or not the Sandy Bridge security hardware is going to be optional when configuring laptops that use the new chipset. I don't want just an option to disable Anti-Theft 3.0 in the bios, I want the hardware not present at all.


      And, if somebody can explain exactly how the new security features in Sandy Bridge are implemented at the hardware level, it would be useful information.