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This is a non-programming question. I'm running IIS on my machine and allowing people to access a website on my machine by making them type http://<mymachinename>. However I want them to access my website by some other name like http://<acoolsite>, but I don't want to rename my machine name. I am running Windows Vista. How can I get around it?

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The easiest way is to use a CNAME in DNS. Failing that (if a central DNS is not available), they'd have to make an entry in their HOSTS file to your direct IP address.

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Since you are not using fully qualified domain names (, I'm going to assume you do not have DNS running. In that case, edit the HOSTS file on each client computer and add an entry for your new name


You may have to create this file and be sure that you don't have the ".txt" on the end. There is typically a hosts.sam file created by windows as a sample you can rename. Add a line like: acoolsite

Where the IP address is the IP address of your system

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Not necessarily. Windows and Linux can automatically expand hostnames to FQDNs. The internal DNS server can also expand local requests automatically. – grawity Jun 1 '09 at 14:28

Register a domain name and point it to your IP address. If you have a static IP you can use to keep your domain in sync.

Be aware that accessing your website inside the network may not work without some configuration.

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