Etc Hosts Management Utility & Go Library.

/etc/hosts Management
It is easy to open your /etc/hosts file in text editor and add or remove entries. However, if you make heavy use of /etc/hosts for software development or DevOps purposes, it can sometimes be difficult to automate and validate large numbers of host entries.

txeh was initially built as a golang library to support kubefwd, a Kubernetes port-forwarding utility utilizing /etc/hosts heavily, to associate custom hostnames with multiple local loopback IP addresses and remove these entries when it terminates.

A computer's /etc/hosts file is a powerful utility for developers and system administrators to create localized, custom DNS entries. This small go library and utility were developed to encapsulate the complexity of working with /etc/hosts directly by providing a simple interface for adding and removing entries in a /etc/hosts file.

txeh Utility


MacOS homebrew users can brew install txn2/tap/txeh, otherwise see releases for packages and binaries for a number of distros and architectures including Windows, Linux and Arm based systems.

Complie and run from source (dependencies are vendored):

go run ./util/txeh.go


The txeh CLI application allows command line or scripted access to /etc/hosts file modification.

Example CLI Usage:

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Add, remove and re-associate hostname entries in your /etc/hosts file.
Read more including useage as a Go library at https://github.com/txn2/txeh

  txeh [flags]
  txeh [command]

Available Commands:
  add         Add hostnames to /etc/hosts
  help        Help about any command
  remove      Remove a hostname or ip address
  version     Print the version number of txeh

  -d, --dryrun         dry run, output to stdout (ignores quiet)
  -h, --help           help for txeh
  -q, --quiet          no output
  -r, --read string    (override) Path to read /etc/hosts file.
  -w, --write string   (override) Path to write /etc/hosts file.
# point the hostnames "test" and "test.two" to the local loopback
sudo txeh add test test.two

# remove the hostname "test"
sudo txeh remove host test

# remove multiple hostnames 
sudo txeh remove host test test2 test.two

# remove an IP address and all the hosts that point to it
sudo txeh remove ip

# remove multiple IP addresses
sudo txeh remove ip

# remove CIDR ranges
sudo txeh remove cidr

# quiet mode will suppress output
sudo txeh remove ip -q

# dry run will print a rendered /etc/hosts with your changes without
# saving it.
sudo txeh remove ip -d

# use quiet mode and dry-run to direct the rendered /etc/hosts file
# to another file
sudo txeh add dev.example.com -q -d > hosts.test

# specify an alternate /etc/hosts file to read. writing will
# default to the specified read path.
txeh add dev2.example.com -q -r ./hosts.test

# specify a seperate read and write oath
txeh add dev3.example.com -r ./hosts.test -w ./hosts.test2

txeh Go Library


go get github.com/txn2/txeh

Example Golang Implementation:

package main

import (


func main() {
    hosts, err := txeh.NewHostsDefault()
    if err != nil {

    hosts.AddHost("", "test")
    hosts.AddHost("", "logstash")
    hosts.AddHosts("", []string{"a", "b", "c"})
    hosts.RemoveHosts([]string{"example", "example.machine", "example.machine.example.com"})
    hosts.RemoveHosts(strings.Fields("example2 example.machine2 example.machine.example.com2"))

    removeList := []string{
    hfData := hosts.RenderHostsFile()

    // if you like to see what the outcome will
    // look like
    // or hosts.SaveAs("./test.hosts")

Build Release

Build test release:

goreleaser --skip-publish --rm-dist --skip-validate

Build and release:

GITHUB_TOKEN=$GITHUB_TOKEN goreleaser --rm-dist