Troubleshooting guide for Windows hosts -file

This post describes how to fix possible issues with Windows hosts-file.

Opening the hosts -file

First of all, hosts file location is usually: C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc\hosts (link may or may not work depending on your security settings and browser version, but you can always copy-paste it to your text editor.

Editing hosts-file requires elevated privileges for the text editor process, so you’ll need to run it as an administrator.

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SharePoint Windows Authentication fails on other addresses than localhost

SharePoint Authentication prompt

This post describes how to fix Windows Authentication on a SharePoint server failing on other addresses than localhost.

Symptoms

You get the standard Windows/Basic Authentication prompt when accessing your SharePoint site, but the site won’t accept your credentials when your accessing the site using an address like http://website. However, using address like http://localhost works fine (but of course may cause other problems).

You also get event log entries like this (most likely in System -category):

The program w3wp.exe, with the assigned process ID, could not authenticate locally by using the target name HTTP/WEBSITENAME.

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