I want to use an SSH tunnel to work on a project, -L 8080:localhost:80. When opening http://localhost:8080 on my local machine things work, but the server (MediaWiki) is putting a lot of (example IP) in the HTML source served and this address does not go anywhere from my localhost.

Is there a way to map to on my local machine? E.g. something like /etc/hosts but then for IP addresses.

(Ideally I want this to work on OS X.)

  • 3
    use ssh -D 1080 instead of port forwarding and configure your browser to use a SOCKS proxy via localhost:1080 (all browser traffic will be routed via that ssh SOCKS tunnel). Jun 9, 2015 at 12:38
  • @StéphaneChazelas thanks. This is a good workaround. I'd still like to know if "IP aliases" are possible though.
    – the
    Jun 9, 2015 at 12:50
  • That would have to be done via some LD_PRELOAD wrapper, DNAT at the firewall level (don't know about OS/X), or some other form of proxying (HTTP proxy or SOCKS proxy doing the translation on the fly). Jun 9, 2015 at 13:05
  • Actually, if you configure your browser to HTTP-proxy via localhost:8080, it would probably work. It would issue some GET HTTP/1.1... to the remote web server which it should treat properly. Jun 9, 2015 at 13:09

1 Answer 1


This sounds liks a problem which can more easily be solved within your HTTP config. See if you can set the hostname on the server to be localhost for the testing period, and/or disable canonicalname redirection.

I think that convincing the webserver NOT to send that canonical IP will prevent the problem you're trying to solve with a networking/hosts fix.

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