I have successfully edited my hosts file in c:\windows\system32\drivers\etc\hosts using a notepad while running as administrator; I have mapped various <IP domains> in the format "127.0.0.1 msn.com", "127.0.0.1 www.msn.com", etc. (single space). I have
rebooted and verified that the hosts file is edited, but when doing a ping or navigating firefox to msn.com, I do not receive 127.0.0.1 but instead the correct msn.com site. I have looked in the c:\windows\sysWOW64 file but do not see a hosts file to edit.
I am trying to filter out various malicious websites. I do not have the same problem in my network hub which is XP sp2.
Perhaps your hosts file is corrupted or in a wrong format, e.g. Unicode. I would try this:
1. Rename the original host file to get it out of the way.
2. Type this command:
3. Enter this single line:
4. Save and close the file.
5. Type this command:
Can you see the single altavista line?
6. Type this command:
What IP address do you see?