wheel - 9:23 pm on Feb 7, 2011 (gmt 0)
I was told I needed to change the url within my database options. I did that using wp codex instructions but that shut down the local server.)
Yes, in the WP database is your domain name, but just changing that is more problematic than what I've suggested.
It's handy to know the hosts file anyway, Then you can do development locally, easily. And you can do stuff like point ad networks to your local PC as well. Then when you visit a site,it tries to grab the ads from your machine and you of course end up with no more ads :).