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NAME    [Toc]    [Back]

     hosts - host name database

DESCRIPTION    [Toc]    [Back]

     The hosts file  contains  information  regarding  the  known
hosts on the network.
   For  each host, a single line should be present with
the following

           Internet address
           Official host name

     Items are separated by any number of blanks and/or tab characters.  A `#'
     indicates  the  beginning of a comment; characters up to the
end of the
     line are not interpreted by routines which search the  file.

     The  system configuration file resolv.conf(5) controls where
host name information
 will be searched for.  The mechanism provided permits the administrator
   to  describe  the  databases  to  search;  the
databases currently
     known include yp(8), DNS and the hosts database.

     When using the name server named(8), this  file  provides  a
backup when the
     name server is not running.  For the name server, it is suggested that
     only a few addresses be included in this  file.   These  include addresses
     for the local interfaces that ifconfig(8) needs at boot time
and a few
     machines on the local network.

     This file may be created from  the  official  host  database
maintained at
     the  Network  Information Control Center (NIC), though local
changes may be
     required to bring it up to date regarding unofficial aliases
and/or unknown
  hosts.   As  the database maintained at NIC is incomplete, use of the
     name server is recommended for sites on the DARPA  Internet.

     Network addresses are specified in the conventional Internet
``.'' (dot)
     notation using the inet_addr(3) routine  from  the  Internet
address manipulation
  library, inet(3).  Host names may contain any printable character
     other than a field delimiter, newline, or comment character.

FILES    [Toc]    [Back]


SEE ALSO    [Toc]    [Back]

     getaddrinfo(3),    gethostbyname(3),   getnameinfo(3),   resolv.conf(5),
     ifconfig(8), named(8)

     Name Server Operations Guide for BIND.

HISTORY    [Toc]    [Back]

     The hosts file format appeared in 4.2BSD.

BUGS    [Toc]    [Back]

     A name server should be used instead of a static file.

     Lines in /etc/hosts are limited to BUFSIZ  characters  (currently 1024).
     Longer lines will be ignored.

OpenBSD      3.6                        December     11,     1993
[ Back ]
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