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Intel® SGX Attestation Technical Details

One way to help ensure that Intel® SGX platforms have been appropriately updated is through the process of attestation. The attestation process verifies that the platform is a valid Intel® SGX platform and that the platform components meet a defined set of security requirements.  In addition, the attestation process enables the application provider to verify the security version of the application.

Intel performs TCB Recovery operations to enable parties utilizing Intel® SGX to determine whether updates for vulnerabilities have been applied on the platform from which attestation requests originate. Even with updates for vulnerabilities applied, an attestation may not result in an “UpToDate” response. This is because even up to date platforms may support different configurations, and these configurations may not be equivalent from a security standpoint. This applies whether the Intel® SGX Attestation Service (IAS) or the Intel® SGX Provisioning Certificate Service (PCS) is used. See Table 1 below for details.

For details on the IAS API and the PCS API, please refer to the IAS API Specification. and the PCS API Specification, respectively.

Table 1. Security Configurations and Responses:

Security Advisory

Security Configuration

Attestation Response


Hyper-threading (HT) enabled/disabled

CONFIGURATION_NEEDED if HT enabled (introduced)


Hyper-threading enabled/disabled



Integrated graphics enabled/disabled

CONFIGURATION_NEEDED if integrated graphics enabled (used)


Voltage MSR locked/unlocked



SW mitigations present/absent

SW_HARDENING_NEEDED (introduced) or CONFIGURATION_AND_SW_HARDENING_NEEDED (introduced). One or the other will always be returned for CPUs affected by Intel-SA-00334 (Load Value Injection or LVI).
INTEL-SA-00615 Hyper-threading enabled/disabled SW mitigations present/absent SW_HARDENING_NEEDED (used) or CONFIGURATION_AND_SW_HARDENING_NEEDED (used). One or the other will always be returned for CPUs affected by Processor MMIO Stale Data

Further TCB Recovery Guidance for developers is available.







Initial release to communicate Security configurations and special attestation responses for SGX. From 2018 – 2020 Intel was creating a sperate Attestation details document for each SGX TCB recovery.


April 2021

New format. This document will be used to communicate past and future security configurations and special attestation responses in tabular format. Attestation dates will now be included in the security advisory document not in this Attestation details document.

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