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Posted 28 Oct 2012
Licenced CPOL

Create a local server in C#

, 28 Oct 2012
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A tip about how to create a local server in C#.


In this tip, I'll tell you how to create a local server in C#.

Using the code

At the top of your code file, add this using namespace statements:
using System.Net;
using System.Threading;

In the Program class, create a new instance of a HttpListener:

static HttpListener _httpListener = new HttpListener();

Then, create the Main(string[] args) method:

static void Main(string[] args)
      Console.WriteLine("Starting server...");
      _httpListener.Prefixes.Add("http://localhost:5000/"); // add prefix "http://localhost:5000/"
      _httpListener.Start(); // start server (Run application as Administrator!)
      Console.WriteLine("Server started.");
      Thread _responseThread = new Thread(ResponseThread);
      _responseThread.Start(); // start the response thread

If you add a prefix, you need to terminate the prefix with a forward slash ("/"). You can add more then one prefix.

Before we can run the application, we need to create the ResponseThread method. And then, we must run the application as administrator.

The ResponseThread method:

static void ResponseThread()
     while (true)
           HttpListenerContext context = _httpListener.GetContext(); // get a context
           // Now, you'll find the request URL in context.Request.Url
           byte[] _responseArray = Encoding.UTF8.GetBytes("<html><head><title>Localhost server -- port 5000</title></head>" + 
           "<body>Welcome to the <strong>Localhost server</strong> -- <em>port 5000!</em></body></html>"); // get the bytes to response
           context.Response.OutputStream.Write(_responseArray, 0, _responseArray.Length); // write bytes to the output stream
           context.Response.KeepAlive = false; // set the KeepAlive bool to false
           context.Response.Close(); // close the connection
           Console.WriteLine("Respone given to a request.");

First, you need to get a request (in the context). If you've a context, you'll find the request in context.Request. And context.Request.Url is the request URL. Then, you can write a response to context.Response.OutputStream. With Encoding.UTF8.GetBytes you can get the bytes of a string. The response must be HTML.

The name of the server

The name of the server can be:

  1. http://localhost/ (eventually with a port, such as http://localhost:5000/)
  2. http://[your local IP address]/ (eventually with a port, such as http://[your local IP address]:5000/)
  3. http://[IP from to]/ (eventually with a port, such as


This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)


About the Author

Thomas Daniels
Belgium Belgium
Also known as ProgramFOX. I like programming, playing chess and astronomy. Administrator of Chess Variants Training[^].

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Comments and Discussions

GeneralMy vote of 5 Pin
CS14019-Apr-13 2:04
memberCS14019-Apr-13 2:04 
GeneralRe: My vote of 5 Pin
Thomas Daniels9-Apr-13 5:15
mveThomas Daniels9-Apr-13 5:15 

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