host name database
file contains information regarding
the known hosts on the network. For each host, a single line should be present
with the following information:
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
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
, DNS and the
When using a name server 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
at boot time and a few machines on the local network.
Internet addresses are specified using either dot notation (IPv4) or colon
separated notation (IPv6). Further information on network addressing is
Host names may contain any printable character other than a field delimiter,
newline, or comment character.
file format appeared in
An official host database used to be maintained at the Network Information
Control Center (NIC).
A name server should be used instead of a static file.
Lines in /etc/hosts
are limited to
characters (currently 1024). Longer
lines will be ignored.