Hosts File: Hosts file is a simple file which contains hosts names and IP addresses. With the help of Hosts file, access of any software to internet can be controlled. It can be edited with any text editor easily. In Windows 10, 8.1, 8 & 7, it should be opened as Administrator to save the edits. If you only wanna view it, you can open it without any administrative rights unless it is hidden.
In earlier versions of Windows, you simply open the Hosts file in any text editor and edit it according to your needs. For example, when using pirated Adobe Acrobat X Pro, you needed to modify Hosts file in Windows to get Acrobat X Pro updates without being caught using pirated software. Hosts file does not contain any file extension like .txt. It is just called Hosts. In all Windows 10, 8.1, 8, and 7, you can find it in the same directory as always. This means, it does not matter which Windows release you are using, the Hosts file path is same:
Lock Hosts File: By default, Hosts file is locked and you need to use any text editor as administrator to modify it. Some security software like Avira Free Antivirus, ZoneAlarm Free Firewall have options to lock Hosts file. Locked Hosts file through these security software can not be modified unless you remove those restrictions. The reason to lock Hosts file is the security risk. The Hosts file is not locked, it is very easy to become victim of Malware by simple directing traffic from your computer to remote servers to download Malwares. Unlocked Hosts file may posses many other threats for you and from you to outer internet world.
Edit Hosts File: The procedure to edit hosts file in Windows 10, 8.1, 8 and 7 is same. It needs only a few steps. Just follow the instructions below and all is done well.
- Open any text editor like Notepad or Notepad++ as administrator.
- From Notepad, open the following file: c:\Windows\System32\Drivers\etc\hosts.
- Make the necessary changes to the file.
- Click File > Save to save your changes.
Great, you have easily edited your hosts file.
This article is a borrowed one with a lot of changes from my old article related to edit hosts file in Windows 8.1, 8 and 7.