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hosts file

 

The hosts file is one of several system files meant to assist addressing in a computer network. It is a common part in a operating system's Internet Protocol (IP) implementation, and serves the function of translating human-friendly hostnames (google.com) into numeric protocol addresses, called IP addresses, that identify and locate a host in an IP network.

In some operating systems, the host file content is used over other methods (including MS Windows), such as the Domain Name System (DNS). Unlike the DNS, the hosts file is under the direct control of the local computer's administrator.

For more info see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hosts_(file)


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