Take a look at your desktop computer. What operating system is it currently running?\u00a0\nNow take a look in your data center \u2014 at all of your servers. What operating system are they running?\u00a0\n\nLinux? Microsoft Windows? Mac OS X? You could be running any of those three \u2014 or one of countless others.\nBut here\u2019s the crazy part: That\u2019s not the only operating system you\u2019re running.\u00a0\nIf you have a modern Intel CPU (released in the last few years) with Intel\u2019s Management Engine built in, you\u2019ve got another complete operating system running that you might not have had any clue was in there: MINIX.\u00a0\nThat\u2019s right. MINIX. The Unix-like OS originally developed by Andrew Tanenbaum as an educational tool \u2014 to demonstrate operating system programming \u2014 is built into every new Intel CPU.\nMINIX is running on \u201cRing -3\u201d (that\u2019s \u201cnegative 3\u201d) on its own CPU. A CPU that you, the user\/owner of the machine, have no access to. The lowest \u201cRing\u201d you have any real access to is \u201cRing 0,\u201d which is where the kernel of your OS (the one that you actually chose to use, such as Linux) resides. Most user applications take place in \u201cRing 3\u201d (without the negative).\u00a0\nThe first thing that jumps out at me here: This means MINIX (specifically a version of MINIX 3) is in all likelihood the most popular OS shipping today on modern Intel-based computers (desktops, laptops and servers). That, right there, is absolutely crazy.\u00a0\nThe second thing to make my head explode: You have zero access to \u201cRing -3\u201d \/ MINIX. But MINIX has total and complete access to the entirety of your computer. All of it. It knows all and sees all, which presents a huge security risk \u2014 especially if MINIX, on that super-secret Ring -3 CPU, is running many services and isn\u2019t updated regularly with security patches.\u00a0\nGoogle wants to remove MINIX from its internal servers\nAccording to Google, which is actively working to remove Intel\u2019s Management Engine (MINIX) from their internal servers (for obvious security reasons), the following features exist within Ring -3:\u00a0\n\nFull networking stack\nFile systems\nMany drivers (including USB, networking, etc.)\nA web server\u00a0\n\nThat\u2019s right. A web server. Your CPU has a secret web server that you are not allowed to access, and, apparently, Intel does not want you to know about.\u00a0\nWhy on this green Earth is there a web server in a hidden part of my CPU? WHY?\u00a0\nThe only reason I can think of is if the makers of the CPU wanted a way to serve up content via the internet without you knowing about it. Combine that with the fact that Ring -3 has 100 percent access to everything on the computer, and that should make you just a teensy bit nervous.\u00a0\nThe security risks here are off the charts \u2014 for home users and enterprises. The privacy implications are tremendous and overwhelming.\u00a0\nNote to Intel: If Google doesn\u2019t trust your CPUs on their own servers, maybe you should consider removing this \u201cfeature.\u201d Otherwise, at some point they\u2019ll (likely) move away from your CPUs entirely.\u00a0\nNote to AMD: Now might be a good time to remove similar functionality from your CPU lines to try to win market share from Intel. Better to do so now before Intel removes the \u201cManagement Engine.\u201d Strike while the iron\u2019s hot and all that.\u00a0\nNote to Andrew Tanenbaum: Your operating system, MINIX, is now one of the most used on modern computers! That\u2019s kinda cool, right?\nNote to everyone else: We\u2019re all MINIX users now.