CPU Renamer Tool Rickrolls Benchmark Leakers

(Image credit: AMD)

Earlier in the week, a few tech tweeters and PC news sites reported on some interesting AMD Zen 4 processors spotted in the online Geekbench results browser. Unfortunately, CPU listings were faked, admits Chips and Cheese, which revealed it was behind the prank on Thursday. The site explains that one of its authors spoofed the AMD Zen 4 results using a newly published tool called PMCReader. Predictably, over recent hours, some comically-named CPUs have made the rounds. There has even been a CPU naming Rickroll, but we've spoiled it now, as we've told you...

See more

Mr Astley's CPU will never let you down

Chips and Cheese's article on the PMCReader explains that in contemporary AMD systems, there are six CPUID strings held in registers which can easily be edited to misrepresent the product. The new tool makes editing the register content (up to 48 characters) a cinch. Registers are usually set at boot time, and tools like Geekbench, CPU-Z, AIDA64 and others check them to identify the CPU and report it among the system info and benchmark results.

Another interesting aspect of the tool is its use in not-so-obvious fakes. This happened earlier in the week with the purported AMD Ryzen 7 7800X 10-core CPU Geekbench results. As long as a trickster has a processor with higher than requisite CPU resources, they can configure them down to 'create' lower-tier fake CPUs. Chips and Cheese say it faked the 7800X results by tweaking an AMD Ryzen 9 7950X. It modified the processor's CPUID strings, using tuning tools to implement a negative 350 MHz PBO offset, and removing three cores per CCD. The site asserts that this would "fool most people," and it certainly did.

Moving away from the potential sneaky uses of PMCReader, and firmly back into fun territory, tech tinkerers are having some fun with the PMCReader tool and the 48 characters they can edit to misrepresent a CPU name. Have a look at some of the screenshots circulating since yesterday in the gallery below - are these real or fake?!?!

Will the world of leaks ever be the same again with tools like PMCReader being freely available? It is hard to know at this time, but those looking for early insights into what the likes of AMD is brewing up had now better be double careful.

Mark Tyson
Freelance News Writer

Mark Tyson is a Freelance News Writer at Tom's Hardware US. He enjoys covering the full breadth of PC tech; from business and semiconductor design to products approaching the edge of reason.

  • -Fran-
    I think it'd be more interesting to see if spoofing the CPUID on benchmarks changes things. You know? You can never be too sure XD