Why is adding a new Ubuntu PC to an existing LAN such a pain?

Brian Fahrlander brian at fahrlander.net
Mon Jan 22 02:48:04 UTC 2007

Hash: SHA1

Garry Knight wrote:

> Which leads me to something I've never understood. I tell my router to do
> this so that I can put the name and IP of each machine in /etc/hosts.
> Otherwise, how can you access another machine by name? My machines know
> their hostname and so does the router. My machines also know their own
> domainname but the router doesn't as there's nowhere to configure it in the
> router setup. So, if I don't put the machine names and IPs in /etc/hosts,
> when I try to ping one of my machines by name, some machine out on the
> Internet gets pinged instead.
> How do other people set up DHCP yet still manage to ping machines on the LAN
> by name? Am I overlooking something?

    There's a tactic I used to help in this exact situation.  Consider
the ".local" domain.  Hand it to the machine doing DNS for the entire
site, and make aliases for "www", "dns", "time", and other handy ones.
Ya do this, because you're not at "mydomain.com"- that's on the outside.
Using "mydomain.local" solves some problems.

    DHCP becomes easier. You don't have to use IP addresses, and you can
set <MAC ADDRESS> to "ws01" and be done with it.

    Firewalling is easier. With a proper name, you can reverse-check a
machine's IP address.

    NFS is easier; with a proper name, you can use a wildcard ending in

    It's just a really simple addition that makes things easier.  I have
no idea why people don't do it...though it's just the same thing you'd
do for the _outside_...

    ...and maybe it'll help.

- --
 Brian Fahrländer                 Christian, Conservative, and Technomad
 Evansville, IN                              http://Fahrlander.net/brian
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