- Understanding Execute Disable Bit
- Getting Your Hands on an Execute Disabled Bit Processor
- Shopping for Execute Disable Bit-Compatible Hardware
Understanding Execute Disable Bit
Execute Disable Bit, a feature designed to stop buffer overflow attacks against the operating system. Buffer overflow attacks are one of the most common tactics used to attack personal computers. Intel first introduced this no-execute (NX) feature in its Itanium processor family in 2001, but AMD was the first to bring it to the desktop with its AMD64 processors (Athlon 64 family), which refer to this feature as Enhanced Virus Protection.
Processors which include Execute Disable Bit (also known as NX for no execute) also require two other features to make NX protection work for you:
- A supported operating system. Right now your choices in a desktop OS are Windows XP with Service Pack 2 installed or SUSE Linux 9.2. For servers you have to choose between Windows Server 2003 with Service Pack 1 or Red Hat Enterprise Linux 3 Update 3.
- BIOS support for Execute Disable Bit. To determine if your motherboard or system currently supports Execute Disable Bit or offers BIOS upgrades to add this support, contact your vendor.