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Thread: I Learned How to Speed Up My Internet With HOSTS File Entries

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
    Beans
    54
    Distro
    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Lightbulb I Learned How to Speed Up My Internet With HOSTS File Entries

    Hey, I had a problem over the past three years with my computer taking forever to resolve URLs. I recently learned how to change DNS servers in Ubuntu 12.04 LTS, but I still had the same delays. I noticed a marked improvement after several hours with the new DNS provider, but I began to study about creating a HOSTS file from scratch as a means to do domain and host name blocking for uninvited advertisements.

    I started with a basic entry for my email provider and for my online banking, and tested it immediately. I had to learn how to display the original HOSTS file so I could copy anything important to my own version. I learned about vi /etc/hosts and used my mouse to select the contents and save them elsewhere.

    Then I did the hard part, which was to install my HOSTS version using the sudo mv command. I had trouble following the directory structure to locate my file because I am new to the CLI Terminal. I ended up saving my NewHOSTS.txt file to my Desktop and I used CLI Terminal to move it from there to the /etc/hosts. I was pleasantly surprised that my test file with only a couple of entries worked the first time. But I had a lot to learn about the power of the HOSTS file to speed up my linking, and redirecting, and handovers. I began to catalog all the URLs I saw in my web browser address bar and then I added the host names to my HOSTS file. It was like a snowball effect where I was clicking around a lot faster and getting quicker display results. Even websites not listed in my HOSTS file began to appear more quickly as well.

    I also added to my HOSTS file my DNS servers (for practice) and even all of the Mozilla Firefox support domains and hosts. Now when I click the Help section in Firefox, I get near instant results and there is no waiting for resolution of URLs.

    Then at some point I realized that I could do the same thing with the Ubuntu Forums and the Ubuntu servers for downloading updates. I had to figure out how to get all the names, so I tried looking at the Update Manager process and made it search for updates. I was able to get some host and domains from that, but there was another place I tried and then I had enough to work with. Maybe I was using the CLI Terminal to do the apt-get update and saw more of the Ubuntu host server names there. I noticed immediate results with faster Update Manager, faster CLI Terminal update search, and even the Ubuntu Software Center appears to be displaying faster.

    I did my HOSTS file from data I gleaned using the nslookup command in the CLI Terminal. I was able to get IP addresses and I even noticed some useful data to include, like aliases to the IP address and host names. After about a week, I have built up a HOSTS fie to the size of just under 700 KB. It will still fit nicely on a floppy disk.

    I like the fact that the HOSTS file is portable. I can place it in cloud storage for emergency recovery or on a thumb drive for local recovery or backup purposes.

    Because I had the primary purpose of blocking unwanted domains and host names, I did a lot of that early on, using data I collected earlier on host names and domains I did not want. I learned quickly about the 127.0.0.1 address for the unwanted domains. But when I began to move away from blocking and on to connecting without the wasted time of DNS and delays for service, I focused on the places I visit often or want to visit. I catalogued many websites that would be of use to me. I listed my email servers, my cloud storage, my elected officals and the major branches of local, county, state, and federal government, and I had a fun time getting to know the HOSTS file and have practical exercise with creating and storing and moving the HOSTS file.

    I have already done the work for speeding up my connections on Ubuntu 12.04 for my DSL modem. If anyone would like to see the data on Ubuntu servers or on Mozilla Firefox Support, let me know and I will post those sections from my HOST file here in this thread for all to use.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Denmark
    Beans
    25
    Distro
    Ubuntu

    Re: I Learned How to Speed Up My Internet With HOSTS File Entries

    This sounds pretty cool. Thank you for the tip.
    Greetings.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
    Beans
    54
    Distro
    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Re: I Learned How to Speed Up My Internet With HOSTS File Entries

    I now have a HOSTS file approaching 700 KB in size. I think I can still fit it onto a floppy disk.

    #

    # [ Mozilla Firefox Web Browser Support ]

    23.49.244.61 mozorg.cdn.mozilla.net
    23.49.244.61 support.cdn.mozilla.net
    63.245.215.53 developer.mozilla.org
    63.245.217.20 mozilla.com www.mozilla.com
    63.245.217.36 download.mozilla.org
    63.245.217.39 download.mozilla.org
    63.245.217.50 support.mozilla.org
    63.245.217.51 input.mozilla.org
    63.245.217.71 affiliates.mozilla.org
    63.245.217.86 careers.mozilla.org
    63.245.217.86 firefoxflicks.mozilla.org
    63.245.217.86 mozillalabs.com www.mozillalabs.com
    63.245.217.99 blog.mozilla.org
    63.245.217.105 mozilla.org www.mozilla.org
    63.245.217.112 addons.mozilla.org
    63.245.223.152 webfwd.org www.webfwd.org
    63.245.223.176 webmaker.org www.webmaker.org
    66.151.230.193 sendto.mozilla.org
    69.58.188.49 mzl.la
    72.21.91.19 cdn.mozilla.net
    207.97.227.239 github.com www.github.com

    66.135.59.147 planet.creativecommons.org
    66.135.59.147 search.creativecommons.org
    66.135.59.147 wiki.creativecommons.org
    72.51.46.230 creativecommons.org www.creativecommons.org
    204.93.213.40 store.creativecommons.org
    204.93.213.41 store.creativecommons.org
    204.93.213.42 store.creativecommons.org
    204.93.213.44 store.creativecommons.org

    #

    # [ Linux Ubuntu Operating System ]
    # [ Update Manager, Software Center, Automated Downloads, Linux Support ]

    66.211.214.131 archlinux.org www.archlinux.org
    75.126.153.206 cyberciti.biz www.cyberciti.biz
    75.126.153.206 bash.cyberciti.biz
    75.126.153.214 nixcraft.com www.nixcraft.com
    78.46.78.247 wiki.archlinux.org
    85.13.206.219 shop.canonical.com
    91.189.88.33 extras.ubuntu.com
    91.189.89.88 www.canonical.com
    91.189.89.105 apps.ubuntu.com
    91.189.89.106 apps.ubuntu.com
    91.189.89.161 webapps.ubuntu.com
    91.189.89.220 login.launchpad.net
    91.189.89.221 login.launchpad.net
    91.189.89.222 launchpad.net
    91.189.89.223 launchpad.net
    91.189.89.224 answers.launchpad.net
    91.189.89.224 www.launchpad.net
    91.189.89.225 answers.launchpad.net
    91.189.89.225 www.launchpad.net
    91.189.90.40 www.ubuntu.com
    91.189.91.13 security.ubuntu.com
    91.189.91.13 us.archive.ubuntu.com
    91.189.91.14 us.archive.ubuntu.com
    91.189.91.15 us.archive.ubuntu.com
    91.189.92.150 archive.canonical.com
    91.189.92.191 archive.canonical.com
    91.189.92.200 archive.ubuntu.com
    91.189.92.200 security.ubuntu.com
    91.189.92.201 archive.ubuntu.com
    91.189.92.202 archive.ubuntu.com
    91.189.94.12 ubuntuforums.org www.ubuntuforums.org
    91.189.94.156 canonical.com
    91.189.94.156 ubuntu.com www.ubuntu.com
    91.189.94.173 ns1.canonical.com
    91.189.95.3 ns2.canonical.com
    198.252.206.16 askubuntu.com www.askubuntu.com
    207.241.148.80 about.com www.about.com
    207.241.148.80 linux.about.com
    209.6.3.210 ns3.canonical.com

    #

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
    Beans
    54
    Distro
    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Re: I Learned How to Speed Up My Internet With HOSTS File Entries

    #

    # [ United States Government Official Web Portal ]

    12.129.120.24 answers.usa.gov
    23.0.249.215 business.usa.gov www.business.usa.gov
    23.0.249.215 search.usa.gov
    24.25.26.145 www.firstgov.gov
    24.25.26.152 www.firstgov.gov
    63.150.153.100 business.gov www.business.gov
    63.233.110.35 www.gobiernousa.gov
    63.233.110.43 www.gobiernousa.gov
    65.121.208.185 m.gobiernousa.gov
    65.121.208.202 usa.gov www.usa.gov
    65.121.208.202 www.seniors.gov
    65.121.208.211 m.gobiernousa.gov
    65.121.208.216 usa.gov www.usa.gov
    65.121.208.216 www.seniors.gov
    65.121.208.232 m.usa.gov
    65.121.209.176 m.usa.gov
    66.6.36.34 blog.usa.gov
    66.6.36.36 blog.usa.gov
    159.142.1.220 kids.gov www.kids.gov
    162.140.57.23 www.welcometousa.gov
    162.140.57.90 publications.usa.gov
    173.252.148.104 firstgov.gov
    173.252.148.104 gobiernousa.gov
    173.252.148.104 seniors.gov
    184.26.41.215 kids.usa.gov
    216.128.241.32 go.usa.gov
    216.128.241.47 firstgov.gov
    216.128.241.47 gobiernousa.gov
    216.128.241.47 seniors.gov
    216.128.241.216 my.usa.gov

    #

    # [ United States Government Services ]

    23.62.105.215 www.howto.gov
    63.235.36.17 www.itdashboard.gov
    63.235.36.27 quickfacts.census.gov
    63.235.36.67 www.itdashboard.gov
    63.235.37.188 quickfacts.census.gov
    66.151.109.33 cfda.gov www.cfda.gov
    69.25.74.162 change.gov www.change.gov
    159.142.4.109 computersforlearning.gov www.computersforlearning.gov
    159.142.75.50 www.gsa.gov
    159.142.144.188 gsa.gov
    159.142.162.26 gsablogs.gsa.gov
    173.252.148.82 apps.gov
    173.252.148.83 howto.gov
    173.252.148.104 itdashboard.gov
    184.72.241.172 federalregister.gov www.federalregister.gov
    198.137.240.122 cio.gov www.cio.gov
    204.193.227.133 fedworld.gov www.fedworld.gov
    204.193.230.133 ntis.gov www.ntis.gov
    209.134.55.115 visitthecapitol.gov www.visitthecapitol.gov
    216.64.203.235 gsaelibrary.gsa.gov www.gsaelibrary.gsa.gov
    216.64.206.176 gsaelibrary.gsa.gov www.gsaelibrary.gsa.gov
    216.128.241.25 apps.gov www.apps.gov
    216.128.241.25 info.apps.gov www.info.apps.gov
    216.128.241.26 howto.gov
    216.128.241.47 itdashboard.gov

    166.78.88.32 support.govdelivery.com
    208.42.190.14 service.govdelivery.com
    208.42.190.21 links.govdelivery.com
    208.42.190.23 admin.govdelivery.com
    208.42.190.24 public.govdelivery.com
    209.167.231.15 direct.govdelivery.com
    216.243.167.169 govdelivery.com www.govdelivery.com

    #

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
    Beans
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    Distro
    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Re: I Learned How to Speed Up My Internet With HOSTS File Entries

    #

    # [ United States Postal Service, US Mail ]

    23.0.248.70 about.usps.com
    23.0.248.70 tools.usps.com
    23.0.248.70 www.usps.com
    23.0.248.70 www.usps.gov
    23.62.104.70 cns.usps.com
    56.0.34.75 gateway.usps.com
    56.0.34.79 reg.usps.com
    56.0.34.122 moversguide.usps.com
    56.0.34.133 faq.usps.com
    56.0.134.100 usps.com
    56.0.156.39 ehome.uspis.gov
    56.0.156.41 postalinspectors.uspis.gov
    56.0.156.41 uspis.gov www.uspis.gov
    56.0.195.105 ribbs.usps.gov
    65.242.3.5 uspsoig.gov www.uspsoig.gov
    65.254.60.26 uspsvideo.com www.uspsvideo.com
    69.25.225.93 stamps.com www.stamps.com
    184.26.40.70 shop.usps.com
    184.26.40.70 store.usps.com

    #

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
    Beans
    54
    Distro
    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Re: I Learned How to Speed Up My Internet With HOSTS File Entries

    #

    # [ White House ]

    23.1.44.110 apply.whitehouse.gov
    23.1.44.110 petitions.whitehouse.gov
    63.233.110.8 www.wh.gov
    63.233.110.42 www.wh.gov
    165.254.44.115 www.whitehouse.gov
    165.254.44.171 www.whitehouse.gov
    184.26.156.110 whitehouse.gov
    198.246.60.122 whitehousegiftshop.com www.whitehousegiftshop.com
    204.245.162.17 wh.gov
    204.245.162.49 wh.gov
    209.251.178.107 whitehousehistory.org www.whitehousehistory.org

    #

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Beans
    3,509

    Re: I Learned How to Speed Up My Internet With HOSTS File Entries

    Why don't you just attach your hosts file?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
    Beans
    54
    Distro
    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Re: I Learned How to Speed Up My Internet With HOSTS File Entries

    I can attach a HOSTS file? I will try to figure out how to do that

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Beans
    3,509

    Re: I Learned How to Speed Up My Internet With HOSTS File Entries

    Quote Originally Posted by ac5jw View Post
    I can attach a HOSTS file? I will try to figure out how to do that
    Copy it to your home folder ....Right click on the file > compress as tar.gz and use the paper clip icon to attach.
    I'm not sure what the hosts file contains, so make sure there is no revealing info in it.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
    Beans
    54
    Distro
    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Re: I Learned How to Speed Up My Internet With HOSTS File Entries

    OK, I think I figured out how to give an attachment. But, my HOSTS file is too large for this forum to accept it in one segment. I would have to break it down anyway to stay under 19.5 KB.

    R

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