Do you use HOSTS file?

Discussion in 'polls' started by Zimzi, Dec 20, 2008.

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Which HOSTS file do you use?

  1. MVP

    59 vote(s)
    27.7%
  2. HP

    6 vote(s)
    2.8%
  3. Mike's Ad Blocking

    3 vote(s)
    1.4%
  4. Dan Pollock's

    1 vote(s)
    0.5%
  5. Other (Which?)

    17 vote(s)
    8.0%
  6. I do not use HOSTS file (Why?)

    127 vote(s)
    59.6%
  1. Zimzi

    Zimzi Registered Member

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    Posts:
    289
    Do you use HOSTS file, which file do you use and why so? If you do not use HOSTS file please explain why? Thanks. :)
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2008
  2. Cloudcroft

    Cloudcroft Registered Member

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    Location:
    The Hill Country of Texas
    I use MVPS hosts file along with HostsMan. I tried another file long ago, and it seems like I had a problem with it, so stayed with MVPS.
     
  3. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

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    I used to, but not anymore. The reason is, they are not as effective as they would seem to be on the surface. The websites that are blocked by these files can literally change on the hour. Malicious websites come and go, legitimate websites gets compromised and then become ok again, HOST files just simply cannot keep up. You also have to deal with (maybe not in all cases) manually replacing these files and checking for duplicates. It can be a major hassle.
     
  4. noone_particular

    noone_particular Registered Member

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    I use a modified MVP hosts file and manage it with HostsToggle. A hosts file is of little value from a security perspective but they're good for getting rid of the more common ads and most of the Google garbage (ads, analytics, syndication, etc) that's added to many sites. That said, these are secondary roles for my hosts file. Its primary role is resolving specific addresses that I don't want a DNS server to handle.
     
  5. AKAJohnDoe

    AKAJohnDoe Registered Member

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    127.0.0.1
    I do not because the 1980's were so long ago after all
     
  6. Page42

    Page42 Registered Member

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    I use the Spybot hosts file. Used in conjunction with a good file editor (I have been using Hoster2.0), I have successfully blocked some sites that otherwise were causing a problem. I figure that blocking access to all those bad sites via a hosts file has to be a good thing, regardless of what decade this is. :D
     
  7. Rmus

    Rmus Exploit Analyst

    Joined:
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    Location:
    California
    No, because

    1) I have no DNS resolving issues

    2) No security value in blocking, IMO; waste of time for me; I have security in place to take care of "bad" sites;
    I like to test bad sites to keep up with the latest exploits!

    3) Blocking ads doesn't improve anything for me; Too much trouble to keep up with. Many sites have legitimate ads which are necessary for their support. I can discriminate between those and the junk.

    4) See below:

    https://www.wilderssecurity.com/showpost.php?p=709045&postcount=2
    https://www.wilderssecurity.com/showpost.php?p=709084&postcount=4
    ----
    rich
     
  8. manOFpeace

    manOFpeace Registered Member

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    Location:
    Ireland
    I use MVPS hosts file. At the time "it" seemed to be the one to go with. It has many benefits as I use my computer mainly for surfing. MVPS are very diligent in keeping their hosts file updated.:)
     
  9. suliman

    suliman Registered Member

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    I use hostsman to manage the hosts file. I use it for exclusively for ad blocking. Blocking ads through the hosts file, rather than adblock extension in firefox, speeds up page loading time for me.
     
  10. funkydude

    funkydude Registered Member

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    I use MVP as it's the most frequently updated, and he removes dead links frequently, keeping the list clean. I don't use spybots as they don't remove dead links.
     
  11. Balatsokas

    Balatsokas Former Poster

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2008
    Posts:
    86
    Location:
    Land of NoWhere
    Hosts File

    Myth - "Special AntiSpyware Hosts Files are necessary to prevent Spyware infections."

    Reality - "Using Special AntiSpyware Hosts Files
    is a waste of time and leads to a false sense of security.
    Any Malware/Spyware can easily modify the Hosts File at will, even if it is set to Read-only.
    It is impossible to "lock-down" a Hosts File unless you are running as a limited user
    which makes using it in this case irrelevant anyway.
    Various Malware/Spyware uses the Hosts File to redirect your Web Browser to other sites.
    They can also redirect Windows to use a Hosts File that has nothing to do with the one you keep updating.

    When cleaning Malware/Spyware from a PC, it is much easier to check a clean Hosts File
    than one filled with thousands of lines of addresses.

    Considering how easily a Hosts File can be exploited, redirected and potentially block good sites,
    it is strongly recommended NOT to waste time using Special Hosts Files."

    Large Hosts Files
    "Large Hosts Files cause Internet related slowdowns due to DNS Client Server Caching.
    This negatively effects your browsing speed.
    AntiSpyware Hosts File authors irresponsibly recommend disabling
    the DNS Client Service to solve this problem.
    This is not a solution.
    The overall performance of the client computer decreases
    and the network traffic for DNS queries increases if the DNS resolver cache is deactivated.
    This effectively reduces Internet Performance for sites you have previously visited
    and puts an unnecessary load on your ISP's DNS server."

    Source
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2008
  12. Page42

    Page42 Registered Member

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    Where did you get this information, that they don't remove dead links?
     
  13. Osaban

    Osaban Registered Member

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    No, I never thought it was necessary for me as I run 'virtualized' most of the time.
     
  14. gerardwil

    gerardwil Registered Member

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    Location:
    The Netherlands
    No Hosts for me directing to localhost.

    Gerard
     
  15. Creer

    Creer Registered Member

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    Jun 29, 2008
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    1,345
    Im using MVPS HOST File with my Online Armor which protects my host file from any unauthorized changes.
     
  16. HURST

    HURST Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2007
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    1,419
    Used to use MVP, but stopped months ago. For me, it was useless.
    I still install it on other peoples computers when I have to clean them.
     
  17. funkydude

    funkydude Registered Member

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    By testing it myself, you can also compare the size. As far as I know, the "immunize" function doesn't support dynamically removing dead links when clicking "immunize". Infact I've seen them remove dead links from the "built-in list" a few rare times, but this does not remove it from your file. I tested this because I used to use immunize for browsers for a few years, then after removing all immunization I still had 10-20 links in firefox. Now I just use MVP.
     
  18. Murderlove

    Murderlove Registered Member

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    No I do not. But then again I have not really looked into it.
     
  19. Page42

    Page42 Registered Member

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    FYI, Patrick M. Kolla, when asked, "does Spybot remove dead links from its hosts file?", replied...

    "yes, we remove domains that have been inactive for a while since a few months ago. We've got scripts that check and compare contents and automatically get changed domain stati for review.":thumb:
     
  20. funkydude

    funkydude Registered Member

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    Right, but does it remove those links that are already injected into your hosts file? Or only prevent the dead links from being injected into fresh files by removing them from the spybot list?

    Apart from that, at least they are removing something now, I'll still stick with MVP though.
     
  21. Dude111

    Dude111 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2008
    Posts:
    212
    I have a few things in my host file :)
     
  22. G1111

    G1111 Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    Posts:
    2,127
    Location:
    USA
    MVPS + hpHosts (with HostsXpert)
     
  23. funkydude

    funkydude Registered Member

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    I should also add that using a HOSTS file as a malware blocker, as said previously in this thread, doesn't help with the constant opening/closing of domains. In my case i use it mainly for advertising/marketing websites and sideads/cookies etc. I rely on firefox(google) and OpenDNS to take most of the malware blocking.
     
  24. chrisretusn

    chrisretusn Registered Member

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    Jun 16, 2004
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    Location:
    Philippines
    No I do not use a hosts file as a malware blocker redirector. I have tried it using MVPS HOSTS; however, I see no real gain from using one for the following reasons:

    1) Don't like "Failed to Connect" messages in my browser for sites redirected to localhost.

    2) Occasionally I have found legit sites redirected to local hosts. It's an annoyance to edit the hosts file.

    3) I frequently open links provided in my spam e-mails. To date not one of these links has ever been redirected to localhost.

    4) Every time I update the host file (MVPS) I have to put back in my network definitions.

    5) Personally I see it as a waste of time, as there is no real security gain using the hosts file to redirect malware to localhost.
     
  25. Page42

    Page42 Registered Member

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    PK says there is special "undo" flag in the database in updates, and the program removes the dead links whenever any immunization action is taken. :)
     
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