The HOSTS file in various operating systems including Microsoft Windows contains a list of IP addresses manually mapped to their respective domain host names. The HOSTS file is preferred by operating system and various other applications when translating a host name to IP address. If the HOSTS file does not contain the host name, then that application checks the domain name server for the respective IP address.This is why some malware use the HOSTS file to direct popular domain names to their own malicious IP addresses. If you want to reset the Windows 8 HOSTS file back to its default state, then you can follow these instructions:
- Download the reset-hosts-win8.zip to your computer.
- Extract the contents of the downloaded ZIP file on your desktop (or any other folder).
- Double-click on ResetHOSTS.exe file. It would ask for administrator privileges. Click on the Yes button to continue.
- The application is a very simple tool without any bells and whistles. Just click on the Reset button to reset your HOSTS file.
- It would show an information message box if everything goes okay. It also displays where the older HOSTS file is saved (just in case you need it).
- For the new HOSTS file to work, you have to restart all the open web browser windows.