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java app using proxy server and local hosts file

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Hi All,
We have a java app which uses a proxy server to connect to other http/s servers. We were using websphere 4.0.3. In that version I had noticed that when we make a http connection to another server, it will look up the local hosts file and then if it does not find the resolution there, then it will try to resolve the domain name via the proxy server.
However when we upgrade to 4.0.7, we notice a different behaviour.
It does not check the local hosts file first. It just checks the proxy server and then if it does find the mapping there then it will use that mapping, ignoring the hosts file.
Hence the priority of resolution is changed.
Any one have any comments or discussions about proxy server priority vs local hosts file for resolution?
And can anyone confirm that what I have found using experiments is really the case and has anyone experienced this?
Thanks very much
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