I have a HTTP server running on port 9876.
http://127.0.0.1:9876/ into Chrome and the page loads instantly.
http://localhost:9876/ into Chrome and the page never loads.
I have never modified C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc\hosts.
Every line in the hosts file is commented out.
The following lines exist in the file and may be relevant:
# localhost name resolution is handled within DNS itself. # 127.0.0.1 localhost
As I said, I have not added these lines myself. I have not edited the hosts file.
Obviously I can uncomment the second line to make localhost work. But why is this necessary if the first line is correct? Did Microsoft write the first line? It looks like they're telling me that localhost will work without being defined.