DreamHost Review: Speedy and Friendly Web Hosting

DreamHost: A Bit of History

DreamHost team
DreamHost has been on the hosting scene since 1997 when four Computer Science undergraduates at Harvey Mudd College started the bootstrapped company from a single Pentium 100 web server called Destro, using shared bandwidth on a friend’s T1 line.

Headquarters: California, United States

Employees: 170

Founded in 1996 by four Harvey Mudd College graduates – Dallas Bethune, Josh Jones, Michael Rodriguez and Sage Weil – DreamHost is marketed as a web hosting solution for entrepreneurs and developers. The company is owned by New Dream Network, LLC.

DreamHost has three data centers in the US: downtown Los Angeles, Irvine in California and Ashburn, Virginia

In May 2012, DreamHost spun off Inktank, a professional services and support company for the open source Ceph file system.

In 2006, the host launched a beta version file hosting service called Files Forever, allowing customers to store files “forever” and redistribute or sell them with DreamHost handling the transactions after paying a one-time fee. The service was closed to new members in November 2012, the same year the company launched its cloud computing platform DreamCompute and its hosted storage option DreamObjects.

The host has been hit by incidents over the years, which have brought down the company’s servers. In July 2006, two power outages in the building housing DreamHost’s data center caused major disruption to the host’s services.

The following year, about 700 websites and 3500 FTP accounts were compromised, prompting the host to make changes to improve security.

Then the next year, DreamHost accidentally billed some customers for an extra year’s worth of services, totalling $2.1 million in extra charges.

DreamHost a carbon neutral company
DreamHost is a carbon neutral company and offsets its emissions through renewable energy credits.

In January last year, one of the company’s database servers was illegally accessed and some customers’ FTP and shell access passwords were thought to have been compromised. DreamHost forced a password reset.

And in May this year, the company experienced extended outages when power systems failed at its data centre in Irvine. The incident created hours of downtime across two days, affecting more than 350,000 customers and their 1.2 million blogs, websites and apps. While the power outage lasted just a few minutes, DreamHost’s back-up generators failed to start properly.

Despite these high-profile outages over the years, DreamHost’s growth hasn’t slowed down.

DreamHost is a carbon neutral company. After learning it generates as much carbon dioxide as 545 average-size homes, the company began buying renewable energy credits to offset its emissions. The company has also committed to doing everyday tasks greener, like turning off lights, reducing travel and printing on both sides of a page.

Cost

DreamHost offers Shared, VPS and Dedicated hosting. More recently the host announced its new DreamPress service, designed especially for WordPress users.

DreamHost Shared Hosting
DreamHost offers one shared hosting package for $8.95 a month.

Shared hosting costs $8.95 a month and includes:

  • Unlimited TB of disk storage
  • Unlimited monthly bandwidth
  • Unlimited domains hosted
  • Unlimited, full shell / SSH / FTP / SFTP users
  • Unlimited e-mail accounts (POP/IMAP/Webmail)
  • Unlimited MySQL 5 databases
  • Debian Linux operating system

VPS plans are available for between $15 and $200. All VPS plans include:

  • Unlimited TB + 50GB backups of disk storage
  • Unlimited TB of monthly bandwidth
  • 300MB – 4000MB of RAM
  • Unlimited domains hosted
  • Unlimited full shell / SSH / FTP / SFTP users
  • Unlimited e-mail accounts (POP/IMAP/Webmail)
  • Unlimited MySQL 5 databases
  • Debian Linux operating system

There are six Dedicated hosting plans:

  • New Moon 2 – $109 a month – Desktop grade CPU, 2GB RAM, 500GB disk space
  • Half Moon 2 – $129 a month – Server grade CPU, 2GB RAM, 500GB disk space
  • Half Moon 4 – $139 a month – Server grade CPU, 4GB RAM, 500GB disk space
  • Blue Moon 4 – $169 a month – Server grade CPU, 4GB RAM, 1 RAID, 500GB disk space
  • Blue Moon 8 – $209 a month – Server grade CPU, 8GB RAM, 1 RAID, 1TB disk space
  • Blue Moon 16 – $249 a month – Server grade CPU, 16GB RAM, 1 RAID, 1TB disk space
DreamHost Dedicated Server hosting
DreamHost’s Dedicated Server hosting plans comes with lots of unlimited features.

Each of these plans include:

  • 500GB – 1TB of disk storage
  • Unlimited TB monthly bandwidth
  • Unlimited domains hosted
  • Unlimited full shell / SSH / FTP / SFTP users
  • Unlimited e-mail accounts (POP/IMAP/Webmail)
  • Unlimited MySQL 5 databases
  • Debian Linux operating system

DreamPress is DreamHost’s newest product. For $24.95 ($19.95 introductory price), the plan includes:

  • 1-Click WordPress Installation
  • Managed VPS Web & MySQL servers
  • Highly scalable, tuned servers
  • Optimized WordPress configuration
  • Robot-assisted WordPress migration
  • Easy Control Panel interface
  • Expert WordPress Support included
  • Use any theme or plugin you want
  • Optional Backup to DreamObjects Cloud

DreamPress was announced after I signed up for a shared hosting account via the “Sign Up Now” link on the host’s homepage, so unfortunately I wasn’t able to test this hosting option.

Features

If you sign up for Shared rather than WordPress Managed Hosting, WordPress is easily available to install. Just login to your control panel and go to Goodies > One-Click Installs.

Every WordPress install comes with JetPack, Akismet and WP Super Cache.

Jetpack installed with DreamHost WordPress
Jetpack, everyone’s favorite plugin package, comes pre-installed with DreamHost WordPress installations.

DreamHost offers the longest money back guarantee I’ve come across at 97 days, but it comes with a couple of catches (and no doubt frustrates customers who try to get their money back) – it only applies to shared hosting and you must have bought your account with a credit card or Google Checkout. Cancellations after 97 days are pro-rated.

The company also offers domain registration and New Dream Network, LLC (DreamHost’s parent company) is an ICANN-accredited registrar. All new DreamHost hosting packages come with a free .com, .org, .net or .info domain registration free for the life of your hosting.

The host has its own customised control panel, which I’l go into more detail in below in Usability.

DreamHost has created its own One-Click installer for popular software like WordPress and Joomla, with popular new software added at the suggestion of customers.

The host also offers e-commerce solution Cafe Commerce through a partnership with WebAssist. CafeCommerce allows customers to create a customized online store using templates for $30 a month and sell an unlimited number of products and display an unlimited number of images per product. Unlimited transactions and staff logins are also included along with a 14-day trial.

DreamHost has also partnered with CloudFlare, a company that improves your website’s performance and security, to provide free services. CloudFlare acts as a proxy between your visitors and DreamHost’s servers and can cache content and filter malicious traffic before it hits your origin server.

WordPress.org is another of DreamHost’s partners. The host has been a recommended host since 2005.

Free web hosting is offered to non-profit, charitable organisations registered in the US. Check out the DreamHost site for more details.

DreamHost CafeCommerce
DreamHost e-commerce solution CafeCommerce through a partnership with WebAssist.

WordPress Multisite can be run on DreamHost’s shared hosting, but wildcard DNS for subdomains is not available. Customers wanting to use Multisite with subdomains will need to register for a VPS or manually map subdomains. DreamHost also doesn’t provide support for Multisite.

FTP access is available, as is standard with most web hosts, and details are available under “Manage Domains” in your control panel.

Usability

DreamHost uses a custom control panel designed in-house that allows users to manage services such as billing and support, as well as email, domain registrations, databases and one-click installs, or if you just want to buy a snazzy DreamHost t-shirt.

The control panel is easy and straight forward to use and I like that it incorporates both account and your web hosting settings. It just makes it that much easier to access everything in the one place, and it’s also one less password to remember. A main menu that runs down the left-hand side of the page contains settings for every aspect of your account, including upgrades and backing up your account.

Signing up is easy using the website. Just enter your domain and personal details and you’re registered in no time.

When you sign up you need to give you phone number and a four digit PIN and you receive an immediate automated telephone call. At first I thought it was a hassle, but it was easy enough to do.

Customer Service

DreamHost Wiki

DreamHost’s support is provided predominantly through email 24/7, but live chat is also available. There’s also the option of speaking to a real, live human being on the phone – if you want to fork out the $9.95 for three call-backs a month. The company doesn’t have a phone number – you need to login to your control panel and request a call-back.

The best way to find answers to any hosting problems, though, is the DreamHost Wiki, also known as the Community DreamHost Documentation Project.

The Wiki allows anyone who registers to create new articles and make edits to existing one, which means articles can be incomplete or incorrect. Having said this, I searched through dozens of articles about WordPress, setting up email and other hosting options and found the articles detailed and helpful. The only thing I would like to see are more graphics to accompany and illustrate entries.

In any case, the Wiki is a growing wealth of knowledge that not only allows DreamHost staff to help customers, but also lets users learn from users who have had issues before them.

DreamHost Forum
The DreamHost Forum allows customers to troubleshoot issues and find answers to common problems.

If the Wiki doesn’t answer your questions, the forum probably will. There are thousands of posts in thousands of threads for beginners through to software developers. The support staff appear quick to answer any concerns and I came across many happy customers as I trawled the forums.

But not all DreamHost customers are happy ones. Like most web hosts, people who have used DreamHost’s services are are firmly split between the “I heart DreamHost forever!” and the “DreamHost sucks and I’m still trying to get my money back” camps. Many complaints I came across were due to the downtime associated with attacks on the company’s servers, while other issues concerned slow response times and poor customer service.

With most web hosts offering 24/7/365 support, it’s become a feature customers now expect as standard and anything less is not good enough. Support is critical to the success of a web hosting provider. Without adequate support, customers are quick to take their business elsewhere and let the poor service be known on forums and social media outlets like Twitter.

My first contact with the support team was after the email forwarding for my test site failed to work. Less than an hour after sending a support ticket I received a chummy email beginning with, “Hi Friend!”

The support member had checked my email logs and successfully sent me a test email, but subsequent test emails and attempts at changing my forwarding address didn’t work. I was stumped. The support member suggested it was an issue with the company hosting my email address, but the emails I wanted to forward to were hosted with Gmail and Apple. I hadn’t had any issues with sending, receiving or forwarding with these email addresses.

More emails were sent back and forth with the support member until eventually she just stopped replying. At the time of writing this review my forwarding issue still hasn’t been resolved and I’m disappointed DreamHost gave up.

Speed

DreamHost accounts come with a 100 per cent uptime guarantee. Surely a perilous promise. So I was keen to put my test site through its paces and see whether DreamHost could follow through.

I monitored the site using Pingdom. Over the lifetime of the account, the site was up… 99.19 per cent of the time. Not quite 100 per cent, but almost. The site was down 66 times for a total 9 hours 47 minutes.

To be fair, it took a day for the site to be fully up and running, so DreamHost gets a free pass this time. However, between June 29 and July 3 the site had unexplained uptime issues.

For the past seven days the site has been up 99.99 per cent of the time and has been down for just 1 minute, so that’s a thumbs up in my book. Over the past 30 days:

DreamHost uptime

The test site’s uptime has been okay, but not as fast as other hosts I tested.

Over the lifetime of the account, the overall response time was 1130 milliseconds, with a slowest average of 1184 milliseconds and a fastest average of 1050 milliseconds.

In the past seven days the site’s fastest average has been 1083 with a slowest average of 1758. Overall, the site’s response time was 1142. The past 30 days has been good:

DreamHost response times

Disclaimer: In putting together this review, we bought our DreamHost review account just like any other customer – via the sign-up link on the homepage. We didn’t let DreamHost in on the fact we were reviewing their services to avoid any special treatment.

Have you used DreamHost? Tell us about your experiences in the comments below.

To read the reviews in this series:

Image credits: jurvetson.

The Good

  • Testing showed fast and reliable uptime and response times.
  • The company has a conscience – DreamHost offsets its greenhouse gas emissions.

The Bad

  • A history of high-profile outages have somewhat tarnished the company's reputation.
  • The support team is friendly but slow

  • price:
  • usability:
  • service:
  • speed:
  • features:
  • Overall:

29 Responses

  • Chief Pigeon

    I do wonder how well these tests would fair over much longer periods of time.

    We do often hear a lot of noise and bad press about some of the reviewed companies, it would be good to see what a year with them will show.

    Mind saying that, upset people do tend to make much more noise than those contented ones.

    Maybe even a yearly year review, the ups and downs, or more importantly who has the downs more. :)

  • New Recruit

    The site was down 66 times, for five days there were unexpected issues that caused the site to go down.

    For as glowing of a review as this sounds, unless I’m missing something I don’t see how long this eval lasted in which to base this review.

    When showing us pictures of uptime and speed, it would be helpful to note how long this was ran for.

    (Aside from the five days I can gather, plus 1 day of setup)

    When exactly did you sign up for the hosting account?

    I’m also curious as to what constitutes good speed?

    I’ve been a dreamhost member since 2006, and while I went years without having any major issues. I migrated my biggest client sites from dreamhost, due to them being unable to for the lack of a better term, get their shit together.

    Due to our longstanding history of not having issues I extended the benefit of doubt on many occasions. After it was obvious that things weren’t going to get figured out in terms of resolving TERRIBLE performance and responsiveness. I tried many things, per the wikki which according to staff was wrong and ass backwards. The long and the short, nothing worked or resolved the issues.. The handful of sites that I have on my account hardly function to the point where they are pretty much in a digital graveyard until I find motivation to migrate.

    They wanted me to try the VPS, and gave me a free trial with all the bells and whistles (obviously this worked, because you get the fastest options cpu,ram etc.)

    Once that ran out, the “SMART” system kept scaling it up and cranking up my bill, or they would claim it wasn’t powerful enough to handle ONE wordpress site.

    I’m not paying $60-$70 a month for a VPS to host ONE WP site, that get’s the little amount of traffic said site was getting.

    They ended up giving me a portion as a credit, because I was past the trial (they kept saying they needed more time to work out the issues etc.) As a result I have those sites parked until my credits with the shared hosting program run out.

    I just setup pingdom on one of the domains on said account and I can’t wait to see what the results are. :)

    • New Recruit

      Brandon, this is EXACTLY what happened to me. I’ve been a loyal customer since 2010 with no issues on ANY of my sites. then last Thanksgiving, things started to happen. And nothing could get fixed.

      I was using Pingdom and my sites were down more than 50% of the time. They told me it was because someone else on the shared server was hogging up space. They offered up the VPS credit, I took the bait, however I was still having issues. This time, I was told that it was my plugins, files and modules …. Wow!

      I moved to a different hosting company and I am happy to say that there has been NO ISSUE at all whatsoever. I’ve changed nothing and I’ve had no problems. YAY!

      Bottom line? I had great service until last November. Then something changed and both the hosting and customer service has taken a steep dive. Like you, I tried to give them the benefit of the doubt but after 9 months of crap, I couldn’t take it anymore and had to move. It will be a happy day for me when my domains are fully moved and I no longer have to deal with them.

    • New Recruit

      Wish I read this before I signed up. Support is horrible! They don’t seem to understand or want to answer basic questions. They BS and speak down as if I’m the dummy. Bottom line is that no matter how many times I follow their instructions, my site is not “up” and I get nothing but double talk and run around. Stay away from this lemon.

  • New Recruit

    Firstly, I’ve been a BIG dreamhost fan and a proactive user of their shared hosting.

    But they by no means can be defined as “Speedy”. I run more 20 wordpress sites on it and none of them are even theoretically fast (if not seemingly). Even with combinations of W3TotalCache, etc.

    Their servers are constantly overloaded (Either the Apache or the MySQL at different times). Response times of 2-3 seconds and above.

    I’ve also migrated to a VPS on their server, but still not happy with the performance.

  • Site Builder, Child of Zeus

    Dear WPMUDev,

    As a suggestion, how about polling your own paying subscribers before you publish a review of a hosting service?

    Obviously the author of this glowing green post was never a Dreamhost customer or the review wouldn’t have been as favorable.

    In fact, one major WP software vendor went as far as rescinding their endorsement of Dreamhost, that’s how poor their reliability has been.

    Thanks!

        • New Recruit

          I think what he was trying to infer was not that your review should have been written based on feedback from what others thought. Rather, a few minutes spent in the realm of due diligence may make you question your own seemingly glowing review of said company.

          I’m quite shocked that they’ve been listed on the main wordpress page as a recommended host.

          In short nearly 90% of the negative feedback I’ve triaged in the comments to this article are 100% spot on based on my experience as a customer since 2006. (like I said STILL a customer, wouldn’t vouch for the service however)

  • Site Builder, Child of Zeus

    Dreamhost has a security problem.

    Their first part of the problem is that if you notify them they have a security problem and you’re not actually a customer, you pretty much get blown off. I know a fella who regularly has sent them lists — LISTS — of WordPress sites hosted on Dreamhost that have been completely pwned and the usual response he receives back is one or more forms of “well, you’re not a customer of ours.”

    * blink, blink *

    Now me, I’m a customer, for a few different reasons, but if I was coming into this world cold, wet, and naked, I would be paying a lot more attention to security issues regarding my hosting solution.

    As a customer, I have been severely hacked, just a couple years back. Every single WP site I had was compromised. I had no clue about it until I was contacted by Google and told, basically “we’re dropping you from listings because you are just a tool of Czech hackbots, buddy!”

    We’re still not entirely sure HOW I got hacked, but we know at least one vulnerability they used.

    When you use Dreamhost’s “one-click” install to build a WordPress site, it triggers some sort of database on their end that basically says “Joe Bob now has a WP install revision x at y domain.” Whenever there’s an update to the base code of WP, that database is consulted. If it says your WP install is out of date, then Dreamhost’s installer robot automatically updates the install and creates a copy of the old install in a parallel directory with a suffix appended to the name (for example, it copies the entire directory “banana.com” to “banana.com.old”.

    On the surface, this seems handy — so even if someone is completely clueless, their site is kept up-to-date.

    Under the surface — only about 3 mm under the surface, this automated process produces a brand new website that is UNupdated, and that is in a known place on the server.

    So — let’s assume I’m writing a hackbot. If the website I’m targeting [a.b] is hosted at Dreamhost, then I add one line to check for a Special Extra Vulnerable Version: [a.b.old]. If I run that script every time a new WP release comes out, I can GUARANTEE you I will capture a ton of new future zombies at Dreamhost.

    Whoopsie — the thing that is intended to prevent vulnerabilities actually CREATES them… in a predictable fashion.

    So, that’s one issue.

    Here’s the other.

    Their little automated installer robot? The one that keeps track of what you’ve intalled and what it’s revision is and so forth? It doesn’t actually CHECK the site code.

    So, let’s say you are extremely diligent and you keep everything updated and fresh. Every plug-in is updated, every new code update applied within an hour of its posting.

    Eventually, when Dreamhost’s robot installer gets around to your site, it will check only its own memory of your revision, and then happily “update” your site.

    And also making a “.old” copy.

    Because vulnerability is sexy.

    Maybe you deleted that site a while back? The robot intaller panics and sends you messages warning you that there’s some kind of problem with your WP site and your database, and that it’s a security issue and that you have to deal with it.

    Because it’s really actually kinda dumb.

    Thank goodness it’s handling your security, amirite?

    The only way I know of around this is to create a database and install WP manually. this way, the installer robot doesn’t know about it, and if it doesn’t know about it, then it won’t blunder in on irregular intervals and crap all over the precision chessboard of your WordPress site.

    Of course, if someone with whom you are sharing a server gets hacked because of all that, I guess you’re on your own.

    I’ve brought this up with Dreamhost support a few times, because it’s not only me, but a systemic issue. Responses have not left me feeling super-secure, if you catch my drift.

  • New Recruit

    With all due respect to the author of the review, I have been a LONG TIME customer of DreamHost and I have the battle scars to prove it. The downtime is almost comical…in so much as they can actually call themselves a “Host” when there are so many outages. When trying to get tech support recently, they informed me that running a plugin from my wordpress site that is used for Backing up my site violates their service agreement. They said that by using the backup plugin and storing the two weekly backups on their server (which I also download to my local machine each week) had violated their hosting agreement, and I had 60 days to remove the plugin, all backups and cease using the backup plugin going forward or my site would be removed permanently.

    Nice! So…if you use DreamHost, it is apparently a violation of their agreement to use any automated backup software for your WordPress installation. And considering the level of pain, frustration and outages, you would be crazy to host with them without some type of backup solution….so just make sure it is manual and it is takes a lot more time and hassle for you to manage. That is their advice I guess.

    • Site Builder, Child of Zeus

      “…they informed me that running a plugin from my wordpress site that is used for Backing up my site violates their service agreement. They said that by using the backup plugin and storing the two weekly backups on their server (which I also download to my local machine each week) had violated their hosting agreement, and I had 60 days to remove the plugin, all backups and cease using the backup plugin going forward or my site would be removed permanently.”

      Holy chrome!

      What plug-in were you using?

      Did they say specifically what aspect of the User Agreement the plug-in violated?

  • New Recruit

    Very interesting and supportive reviews are provided here. I’ve ‘known of’ DreamHost but had never pursued their service. Recently, I stumbled upon their DreamPress package and I might mention that the current introductory price at least seemed tempting. To my benefit, I read up on this article today because I eagerly wanted to “hear from the horses’ mouth” about the quality of service.

    Several of the arguments about the hysterical outages and poor security or lack thereof, really stifles me. To think that most of the responses regard experience dated back years ago with a span of issues that reportedly linger to the present, I’m surprised that I hadn’t heard about any of this before.

    • Site Builder, Child of Zeus

      “I might mention that the current introductory price at least seemed tempting.”

      You get what you pay for.

      I’m with LiquidWeb now. Sure, their VPS plans start at $60 /mo, but they provide “heroic” support. Most of the time I get a real human response to my tickets in 10 minutes and 9 out of 10 times they’re closed-out within a day at the most. It’s like having my own IT department.

      “I’m surprised that I hadn’t heard about any of this before.”

      Don’t know where you’ve been looking for your info, but here’s what one of my software vendors actually says in their documentation under hosting services:

      “DreamHost (Fail)

      We’ve had so many issues with Dreamhost, many of them on our own various web sites, most of them not even running DAP, and are just simple WordPress blogs. And some are actually plain HTML web sites. And the web sites go down all the time, emails go missing, get delivered late (if at all), and just problem after problem with their service. A majority of our sites had been hosted with DreamHost for about 5-6 years, and we eventually moved most of them over to LiquidWeb.

      The funniest thing with Dreamhost is that when any of your web sites hosted with them go down, and you go to open a support ticket, you’ll almost always find that even their own web site – dreamhost.com – will be down too! And they always use a different domain – dreamhoststatus.com – maybe hosted at Hostgator? LOL! – to notify customers that various servers or services are down. Would you trust a web host that can’t even keep their own site up and running? We certainly don’t. Plus on top of that, there’s no phone support if you have a shared hosting account, and you have to pay $10 per month (only 3 calls allowed) just to get a a “call back” several hours later, and the newbie tech guy at best will usually tell you that their “senior technicians are looking into it”. Just plain pathetic. So a big 2 thumbs down for DreamHost.”

      • New Recruit

        “You get what you pay for.”

        That has never been less true.

        “Don’t know where you’ve been looking for your info, but here’s what one of my software vendors actually says in their documentation under hosting services…”

        Well that’s just it, until recently I wasn’t looking for info on DreamHost at all—which is what brought me here to this article. I’m more knowledgeable about HostGator, GoDaddy, 1&1 and a couple of others.

        The documentation you provided is very informative. I appreciate you for sharing it. Suffice to say, I am simply exploring different options and the recent reviews published by WPMU were all timely.

        Thanks for tidbits, you were helpful.

  • Site Builder, Child of Zeus

    “Several of the arguments about the hysterical outages and poor security or lack thereof, really stifles me.”

    “hysterical”? “stifle”? huh?

    If you set up a website — particularly a WordPress site — on a shared server, then security becomes a pretty big issue because on a shared server, your security ALSO depends on the security of those with whom you share the server.

    “To think that most of the responses regard experience dated back years ago with a span of issues that reportedly linger to the present, I’m surprised that I hadn’t heard about any of this before.”

    Do you subscribe to blogs or alerts where host security and outages are discussed?

    I can’t speak for others, but my experience with the security issues as described above are still continuing to this day.

    Also, I have experienced outages significant enough to contact Dreamhost Support within the past couple of weeks. I might be experiencing outages I’m unaware of, though — I don’t have a service monitoring my uptime.

    I know of a few places that talk about these things.

    Maybe you’re not following the right blogs/alert services?

    • New Recruit

      Regarding DreamHost, no, I was unaware about the specific issues you and others mentioned above. That was my was comment particularly referred to, by chance you misinterpreted that I was speaking of security in general.

      Clearly, it’s not unusual for a hosting company to experience a service outage. The recent issues involving Bluehost, HostGator and HostMonster comes to mind.Also, I read Naked Security’s publications and the US-Cert Vulnerability notes quite frequently, if that matters.

      Here is what I am interested to learn, what *keeps* you with DreamHost? Despite most of these comments here providing mainly negative perspectives, there has to be a factor as to why the business still stands. Perhaps, you could touch base on that…? After all, you did mention you were a customer for a few different reasons.

      • New Recruit

        I’ll echo Edward’s statements.

        I have kept my sites that are running (and I use that term loosely) with them because.

        1. Cost I was paying $120 a year for my hosting. I had about 10 sites a few in development and a couple of clients. That was a great value at the time.

        Until said clients actually started getting traffic, then the performance issues became apparent.

        2. I’m too lazy at the moment to build my own server to replace them.

        I think #2 won’t be an issue when the contract is up for renewal.

  • Site Builder, Child of Zeus

    “I was unaware about the specific issues you and others mentioned above.”

    Well, the issue I mentioned is one of those things that you need to have happen to you before you see it, I guess.

    I have seen reports of WordPress being hacked through a variety of methods, including many many installations on Dreamhost.

    I can’t address why you haven’t heard of this particular method of hacking a Dreamhost install of WordPress.

    “Clearly, it’s not unusual for a hosting company to experience a service outage.”

    Well…

    I think there’s a certain expectation, based on the host’s literature.

    “Here is what I am interested to learn, what *keeps* you with DreamHost?”

    Inertia at the moment, and the costs.

    Inertia because it would be a pain in the ass to move all my sites right now and I am just not willing to spend that time and effort because fiddling-with-my-host is not part of my job. Once I have a dedicated IT person in my crew, locating and moving us to a new host will probably be the priority.

    Until then, I apply compensatory strategies.

    The costs are low, and I have a few bucks helping that because of referrals from a few years ago. I know eventually I’ll have to eat that, but for now, well, I’m not perishing.

    I know they aren’t GLAMOROUS reasons… 8)

  • New Recruit

    “The company has a conscience – DreamHost offsets its greenhouse gas emissions.”

    And this helps my website being hosted by their service in what way? *_* I’ll spare you further ranting about that.

    That being said, DreamHost is fine if you have a tiny website. However, once you start getting 1000 uniques a day, it isn’t that great, even with a VPS plan, which is a joke in itself. I’m paying for 1GB of memory and I’m not getting my money’s worth IMO. My actual memory usage average is in the 325-350MB range, but the cached memory eats all the rest, so much so that DreamHost “graciously” reboots my VPS to knock it down, since there’s no way to do it otherwise.

    Their support is friendly and as you said, slow. However, the problem arises from the usual, “See our links for help optimizing your site.” That was useful the first time I sent them a ticket before I moved to VPS. Now, that’s not helpful and frankly, as nice as the support folks are, I’m frustrated that my site still chokes down at times.

    I’m looking to move to another hosting company, but I’m afraid that I’ll be trading one problem for another.

  • New Recruit

    I have purchased a web hosting space from DreamHost on 15 April 2014, Since then I am in big problem. They are not providing me the correct details of their Name Server, I had called their customer care number 3 times, but they are not able to solve my issue. I had write email to their support they even did’nt reply to my issue and not giving any specific time limit to resolve issue. I will never do any deal with DreamHost any more. This is the worst company I have ever seen. Once they took the money then there is no response from their side.

  • New Recruit

    We were using DreamHost’s DreamPress for some of our clients. It’s about $25/month + options. If you go over an unpublished MB limit that you can’t even know you hit because there’s nowhere to track it, they take your FTP and website offline — WITHOUT ANY WARNING. Then, to wait for a response to your “urgent” ticket, which always takes the better part of a day. They have no phone support, and chat support is often offline (and when it’s online takes about 90 min to get a response, although their robot says 15min, then 30min, then 10min, then 40 min) so you can expect your site to be offline for at least a day. UNACCEPTABLE.

Comments are closed.