64 MB PHP limit on the account on Dreamhost?


#1

Folks, I am trying to figure out what is a constant 500 error on our news website.

We are hosted on Dreamhost, Re-seller’s plan.

After contacting Live help at DH I have learned, we are “hitting the memory limit.” And we are to “suppose to buy VPS”.

All my efforts to learn “numbers” so I can talk the bookkeeper into it, did not give any results. “We do not give information on memory limits for security reasons”, or " you have to trust me, you are hitting the memory limits" where the suggestions.

I went to Plugins Search in my WP and found several plugins what monitor and display PHP Memory. I have learned I was using “Memory usage : 56.96 MByte”

Sure enough, I went to to internet, searching 500 error + dreamhost + Memory usage"

I got a suggestion from someone to call DH (impossible - they do not give tel. numbers!) and ask if THEY HAVE PHP MEMORY LIMIT and what is it.

It was something new to me, and I went Live chat support on DH.

If I understood correctly, Dreramhost has on re-seller’s accounts 64 MB of PHP memory allocated not “per instance” (read “per requesting it domain”), but per “re-seller’s account”.

Means, you have a plan with Unlimited domains, Unlimited traffic, Unlimited space and it all indeed will work, ----> if your websites are NOT PHP driven.

If you have just TWO WP websites with memory-greedy plugins and each wants 32 MB of PHP memory - you have a welcoming 500 server error.

Any observations?


#2

This is the trick with shared hosting. All of them are like that. If you ask about CPU time or memory limits, that triggers the response that you should move to VPS.

I don’t know about a reseller account, but I have tried to figure out the memory limit with a few tests. You can create a custom php.ini and give yourself as much memory as you like, then test a script that uses increasing amounts until your process gets killed by DH. It seems to vary between 50-100 MB. I’m not sure if this is contingent on % of total resources available at any given moment or what. I’ve noticed that my machine has a very healthy CPU idle percentage, so it would be cool if scripts could momentarily use up large amounts of memory and CPU if they were indeed brief and resources were available.

I’m working on a part of a website that would potentially use 100-200 MB for less than 2 seconds and at most 1x per week, but I know that process will get killed, so I’m spending an inordinate amount of time trying to reduce the memory footprint (and at the same time increase run time) so that it won’t be killed. I feel that it’s a waste of time because the resources are there, not being used (which is good if you think about it, rather than being constantly maxed out as it seems other shared hosts tend to do).

It’s a tough balance. I’m not sure what the answer is… but it is only fair that if you have a shared hosting plan, you should share… if you are reselling a shared hosting plan, then there’s not much to share…