[TUHS] [COFF] Pondering the hosts file

Warner Losh imp at bsdimp.com
Fri Mar 12 04:08:03 AEST 2021

On Thu, Mar 11, 2021 at 10:40 AM Bakul Shah <bakul at iitbombay.org> wrote:

> From https://www.freebsd.org/cgi/man.cgi?hosts(5)
> For each host a single line should be present with the following information:
> 	   Internet address
> 	   official host name
> 	   aliases
> *HISTORY* <https://www.freebsd.org/cgi/man.cgi?hosts(5)#end>
>      The *hosts* file format appeared in 4.2BSD.
While this is true wrt the history of FreeBSD/Unix, I'm almost positive
that BSD didn't invent it. I'm pretty sure it was picked up from the
existing host file that was published by sri-nic.arpa before DNS.


> On Mar 11, 2021, at 9:14 AM, Grant Taylor via TUHS <tuhs at minnie.tuhs.org>
> wrote:
> ´╗┐Hi,
> I'm not sure where this message best fits; TUHS, COFF, or Internet
> History, so please forgive me if this list is not the best location.
> I'm discussing the hosts file with someone and was wondering if there's
> any historical documentation around it's format and what should and should
> not be entered in the file.
> I've read the current man page on Gentoo Linux, but suspect that it's far
> from authoritative.  I'm hoping that someone can point me to something more
> authoritative to the hosts file's format, guidelines around entering data,
> and how it's supposed to function.
> A couple of sticking points in the other discussion revolve around how
> many entries a host is supposed to have in the hosts file and any
> ramifications for having a host appear as an alias on multiple lines /
> entries.  To whit, how correct / incorrect is the following:
>    host.example.net    host
>    localhost    host.example.net    host
> --
> Grant. . . .
> unix || die
> _______________________________________________
> COFF mailing list
> COFF at minnie.tuhs.org
> https://minnie.tuhs.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/coff
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