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Windows 7 Tips and Tricks - How to Edit the Hosts File

The hosts file allows users to connect to remote computers and servers by using names instead of IP addresses. This functionality can be very valuable, especially in the corporate environment, and many businesses use the host file to connect to a number of different programs and pieces of hardware.

The hosts file location has not changed from earlier versions of Windows, and editing it is done in much the same way as in Windows XP. To edit the host file on your Windows 7 computer, just follow these steps.
Navigate to C:\Windows\System 32\Drivers\Etc
Locate the hosts file
Double-click the hosts file to open it
Choose Notepad as the program to use to open the hosts file
Type the IP address of the computer or server you want to connect to
Press the tab button and then type the name of that computer or server
Verify your entry - a typical host file entry might look like myserver
Click File and choose Save to save the host file

Once you have made these changes in the host file, your Windows 7 computer will automatically connect to the server when you type its name. This can be extremely useful, since it is much easier for end users to remember the name of a particular server or piece of hardware than its actual IP address.


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