Nvidia’s latest GPU drivers includes a Spectre fix and Fortnite optimizations

Nvidia released a new graphics driver today, GeForce 390.65, that includes a security patch for one of three recently disclosed chip vulnerabilities that are collectively known as Spectre and Meltdown.

Before we get to the driver update, let's have a quick look at the three exploits and what Nvidia had to say about them last week.

  • Variant 1 (CVE-2017-5753): Mitigations are provided with the security update included in this bulletin. NVIDIA expects to work together with its ecosystem partners on future updates to further strengthen mitigations.
  • Variant 2 (CVE-2017-5715): NVIDIA’s initial analysis indicates that the NVIDIA GPU Display Driver is potentially affected by this variant. NVIDIA expects to work together with its ecosystem partners on future updates for this variant.
  • Variant 3 (CVE-2017-5754): At this time, NVIDIA has no reason to believe that the NVIDIA GPU Display Driver is vulnerable to this variant.

Variants 1 and 2 are both Spectre, while Variant 3 is Meltdown (check out our FAQ on the subject for a rundown of both). Nvidia's 390.65 driver update includes a fix for Variant 1.

"Computer systems with microprocessors utilizing speculative execution and branch prediction may allow unauthorized disclosure of information to an attacker with local user access via a side-channel analysis," Nvidia states in the release notes.

Some gamers prefer to wait a bit before installing GPU driver updates, just in case there are unintended consequences. But if you're running a GeForce GPU, you may want to consider throwing caution to the wind and installing the driver update right away as an, er, added precaution.

Nvidia is also pitching this as a "Game Ready" driver for Fortnite, including support for ShadowPlay Highlights in Battle Royale mode, so there's that. And to sweeten the pot, the 390.65 driver adds support for Freestyle, which lets you apply post-processing filters to your games while you play.

Beyond those bits, there some new SLI profiles and a few bug fixes, including:

  • [GeForce GTX 970][Batman Arkham Knight]: Surfaces are rendered incorrectly.
  • [GeForce GTX 1080 Ti][Titan X][Titan Xp][Gamestream]: Artifacts appear when using Gamestream.
  • [Notebook][Fermi GPUs][3D Vision]: Error message pointing to the Stereo driver appears when enabling stereoscopic 3D.

You can install the driver update through Nvidia's GeForce Experience software, or grab and install it manually from here.

Paul Lilly

Paul has been playing PC games and raking his knuckles on computer hardware since the Commodore 64. He does not have any tattoos, but thinks it would be cool to get one that reads LOAD"*",8,1. In his off time, he rides motorcycles and wrestles alligators (only one of those is true).