Adding the IP-to-hostname mapping in /etc/hosts

Open the /etc/hosts file.

Add a line of text in the format ip - address localhost localhost.localdomain .

As shown in Figure 1 , enter imctest imctest .IMC to map to the host name imctest in the IMC domain.

Figure 1: Modifying the /etc/hosts file

how to add ip address to /etc/hosts linux

Save and close the file.

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How to add a static entry in the hosts file?

  • Open your text editor in Administrator mode.
  • In the text editor, open C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc\hosts.
  • Add the IP Address and hostname. Example:
  • Save the changes.
  • Open terminal.
  • Use the nano command line text editor or a different one you have available to open the hosts file. The command with nano is as follows (the command will require your Linux user password)    sudo nano /etc/hosts
  • Add the appropriate changes in the hosts file. Example:
  • Use the Control and 'X' key combination to save the changes.
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Adding private IP addresses to the /etc/hosts file manually

Edit the /etc/hosts file to add the private IP address and corresponding node name for each node in the cluster.

To edit the /etc/hosts file

Log in to each system as the root user.

Add the following entries to the /etc/hosts file:

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How to set up Linux hosts file


Linux is a very powerful operating system that is also one of the most flexible in the marketplace. That flexibility has always been a big selling point of the OS. Any user that doesn't like the way Linux works can always bend it to better fit their needs.

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One very simple example of that is the Linux hosts file. Do understand that the hosts file isn't unique just to Linux. Windows and MacOS also make use of the hosts file. In fact, the MacOS hosts file is almost identical to that of Linux.

What is the hosts file?  

The hosts file makes it easy to map IP addresses to domain names. Sound familiar? It should, as that's exactly what DNS does today. But back in the day of ARPANET, there was no DNS, so there needed to be a means to map those addresses. That's where the hosts file comes into play. Given that DNS now takes care of that for us, why would you even need the hosts file?

The best example I can give of that is for a LAN-based network setup, where you might have servers or desktops you want to be able to reach without having to type a full IP address. You might have a server on your LAN that you regularly access with:

ssh [email protected]

You could map that IP address in the hosts file such that all you'd have to type is:

ssh jack@invoiceplane

It may not be less typing, but it certainly means you don't have to remember the IP address of that server. Instead, you use a nickname. This can be very helpful when you have a large number of servers to work with on your LAN. You can even work with those nicknames in your web browser. For instance, if you've installed Invoiceplan (which is an invoicing solution) on a server within your LAN and the document root of that service is /var/www/html/invoiceplane, you could map the IP address of the server to the nickname invoice and type invoice/invoiceplane in your browser's address bar to open the service.

Also:   The 5 best Linux distros for beginners: You can do this

How do you set this up? It's very easy. Let me show you how.


The only things this will require are a running instance of Linux and some IP addresses to map. That's it, let's make some hosts magic.

1. Open the hosts file

Log in to your Linux machine and open a terminal window. To open the hosts file for editing, type the command  sudo nano /ets/hosts .

2. Add a new entry to hosts

Each line in the hosts file is a mapping for a unique IP address and is laid out in the form:

IP Address Nickname Domain Name

For instance (sticking with our Invoiceplane example), you could map the IP address to the nickname invoice with a domain of invoiceplane.lan. That entry would look like this (and be added to the bottom of the file): invoice invoiceplane.lan

With that entry saved to the hosts file, you could reach that server via three ways:

  • IP address (such as ssh
  • Nickname (such as ssh invoice)
  • Domain name (such as ssh invoiceplane.lan) 

The one caveat to the domain name entry is that you won't be able to reach the server using that entry in a web browser (where you're limited to IP addresses and nicknames).

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3. Save and close

Once you've added the necessary entries to hosts, save and close it with the Ctrl+X key combination. With the file saved, you don't have to bother with restarting the OS, as the networking subsystem will pick up on the changes immediately.

Also: Cool things you can do with the Linux desktop that you can't do with MacOS or Windows  

For those new to Linux, you probably won't need to bother with the hosts file at first. Eventually, however, the deeper you dive into using Linux, you will most likely run into numerous situations where the hosts file is very much necessary.


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    The Internet Protocol address of a Minecraft multiplayer server depends on whether the server is being hosted on a internal or external network. With the former, the IP address is identical to the computer’s.

  4. Adding the IP-to-hostname mapping in /etc/hosts

    Add a line of text in the format ip-address localhost localhost.localdomain. As shown in Figure 1, enter imctest imctest.IMC to map

  5. How to Add an IP to a Hostname File

    2. Adding an IP Address to a Hostname Through the /etc/hosts File.

  6. How to add a static entry in the hosts file?

    Open your text editor in Administrator mode. · In the text editor, open C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc\hosts. · Add the IP Address and hostname. Example: 171.10.

  7. How to Edit Your Hosts File on Linux, Windows, and macOS

    Using the hosts file to map a domain to an IP address is particularly useful when you want to test your website without changing the domain DNS

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    Adding private IP addresses to the /etc/hosts file manually · Log in to each system as the root user. · Add the following entries to the /etc/hosts file: 192.168.

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    ... edit the /etc/hosts file. Add the following line to the /etc/hosts file: IP_address host_name aliases. IP_address is the IP address of the host. host_name is

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