When working on web-apps I'll usually run a development server on my local machine at localhost /, and if I need to show a colleague something I will check my ip address with shell command ip a and then run on that address instead.

Recently I found out that I could also make work in progress accessible to my colleagues by running the dev server on

What is actually happening here, technically? What are the differences between using vs using my ip address?

closed as off-topic by Chris S Feb 5 '14 at 16:22

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "Questions must be relevant to professional system administration. Server Fault is dedicated to professional system and network administrators. End user and enthusiast questions are off-topic (contact your system administrator or hire a professional to help you out). Please see the Help Center for more information." – Chris S
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • Why is a question like mine off-topic and downvoted, but a question like this is highly upvoted and protected? I think my question is more on-topic, if a little bit basic. – wim Feb 5 '14 at 16:27
  • Why is a question like mine off-topic and downvoted, Well, because it is off-topic, being about a dev server, and not a production environment. but a question like this is highly upvoted and protected? Because a flood of developers from StackOverflow were interested in that question, and upvoted it. It was then protected to keep out the spammy answers from low rep users that it started to attract. – HopelessN00b Feb 5 '14 at 23:38
  • Newxt time, just omit the fact that it's a dev server, and it'll probably get a better reception. Of course, it looks like a duplicate of this question, which I found quickly by searching for so it probably would have been closed anyway, but I digress. Point is, steps for better acceptance of your questions on this site: 1) Use search to see if it's been asked before. 2) Don't go out of your way to say it's off-topic (by stating it's a dev server). – HopelessN00b Feb 5 '14 at 23:44
  • OK fair enough! – wim Feb 6 '14 at 11:53
  • 1
    @wim We don't generally delete posts that are simply off topic. Just leave it to die. – Dan Feb 8 '14 at 12:02

In most server configurations, or in netstat output, is just shorthand for all available interfaces.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.