I see on wikipedia that a host file maps IP addresses to human-readable hostnames, much like a DNS server. But does a local computer need to resolve IP addresses? Is the idea that you configure the hosts file for all of the computers on a network so as to customize/configure the network? (Kind of like for a local machine name in windows).
See the manpage of the hosts file, there are some interessting parts.
The file is read before a DNS or any other lookup is made (order defined in
One can summarize it as follows:
It is a burden of the last computer decade, but still usefull.
Chaos's answer is perfectly accurate, but there are a couple additional use case which I felt worthy of mentioning.
Aside from containing
Another use case is for fault tolerance. Whenever I build clusters I always put entries for all machines in the cluster in each machine's