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I read somewhere that a linode can be set up without a domain pointing to it, but I was unsure of how to tackle that. I noticed in the getting started guide it has an entry about updating your /etc/hosts file, and when reading about setting up a LAMP stack it also mentions configuring the virtual hosts with a domain. How can I set these up without pointing a domain at the linode?

Linode is running Ubuntu 10.04

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Those are not really domains, they are just strings that Apache matches against the Host header of the HTTP request. A domain pointing to your IP is merely one way for that to happen. You could add a line to your hosts file saying 1.2.3.4 some_domain_i_plan_to_buy.com where 1.2.3.4 is your linode IP and then pointing your browser to that domain will work for you. It won't work for anyone else of course. Or you can just directly set that header, for example curl -H 'Host: some_domain_i_plan_to_buy.com' http://1.2.3.4/index.html.

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You can just set ANY domain to those places, without having to really point the domain to your linode.

So, it's okay to set microsoft.com to your linode in any way, that's just a sort of "name" :)

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