Set RHEL7 Hostname

This howto will show you how to set the RHEL7 hostname (Redhat 7 or CentOS 7) based machine. If you have built your new RHEL7 based machine and have now got a bit stuck over how to change the hostname from localhost.localdomain to what ever you want this is the how to for you.

Understanding Hostnames

There are three typs of hostnames: Static, Pretty and Transient.

Static Hostname

The Static hostname is essentially the traditional hostname which can is stored in the “/etc/hostname” file. This is the hostname that can be set by the system¬†admin.


Change this file and reboot and your hostname should be permanently changed. Note that the hostname can be changed by editing the “/etc/hostname” file or with the hostnamectl command.

[root@localhost ~]# hostnamectl set-hostname server.domain.tld

Also note that this command will set all three hostnames at the same time, but all three can be set indivdually using the “-static”, “-transient” or “-pretty” flags.

Validate “/etc/hostname” has been updated

[root@localhost ~]# cat /etc/hostname

System Reboot.

[root@server ~]# hostname

Transient Hostname

The Transient hostname is a dynamic hostname which is maintained at a kernel level. It is initialized by the static hostname, but can be changed by DHCP and other network services.

Pretty Hostname

The Pretty hostname is a free form hostname for presentation to the user.

Hostname Information

You can see a bit of information with the hostnamectl command which is very useful. man hostnamectl

[root@server ~]# hostnamectl
   Static hostname: server.domain.tld
         Icon name: computer-vm
           Chassis: vm
        Machine ID: xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
           Boot ID: xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
    Virtualization: vmware
  Operating System: CentOS Linux 7 (Core)
       CPE OS Name: cpe:/o:centos:centos:7
            Kernel: Linux 3.10.0-123.4.4.el7.x86_64
      Architecture: x86_64