Account moved to different server - no notice

I received the following email from DreamHost. Basically they transferred my account to another server with literally no warning at all, breaking a number of things as they did so!

On this new server all my sites run slower, presumably it has lower specs or higher usage. Furthermore, the server they moved me too is one that has been down for several hours (and still is)

So watch out if you want a nice stable service :frowning: Also, I wouldn’t renew too many years in advance if I was you; you never know if they’ll move you to a worse server as soon as you’re committed to a longer period.


This is just a note to let you know that we’ve just moved your account to
a new server!

We apologize for the lack of notice, but this was an emergency move as a
perfomance and stability measure.

What does this mean to you? Hopefully nothing!

But, you may want to double check that all your websites and email
addresses are working.

If an email address isn’t working, please make sure you’re logging
in with the FULL EMAIL ADDRESS (and not something like m########). Also
make sure you’re using for your mail servers, and
not anything with “” in it!

If you had an email .procmail (filtering) or .forward (forwarding) file
that isn’t working, you should be able to easily fix that up just using
our web panel’s “Mail” section!

If you are using your server name ( as your FTP
hostname, be sure to change that to your domain name. The domain name
will always point to the correct server in the event that it is changed
in the future.

If a website isn’t working, please make sure you don’t have anything
like “/home/.SOMETHING/username” in a config file. Instead, it should
just be “/home/username”.

If you run your own DNS, we can’t make all the necessary changes for you,
so you’re going to have to change it yourself right now!

That’s it really… and again, we really apologize for the abrupt nature
of this move! To try and make up for it a bit, we’ve also set your
account to now have unlimited disk and bandwidth, forever!

The Happy DreamHost Moving Team[/quote]

Hey ,
Same problem.

Lot of sites moved incorrectly -
only top level dirs, without content. I restored them
by hand in new server. OK.

But PHP DOES NOT WORK on new server, it returns 503 error.

Thats amazing!

The EXACT same thing happened to me.

I got that email in my box about three days ago. At first, for the first day, my site was working great. Then, all of a sudden, it crashed. It is one of the ones currently experiencing serious server trouble. My sites haven’t been accessible for two days now. The server I was on before, while not perfect, was a lot better than this. It’s hard to justify that this move was for my own good when this server is worse than the first. :stuck_out_tongue:

Oh well!

All of my sites have a 503 server capacity error. And have since around ten o’clock last night.

Someone at the status blog sent in a support ticket and was told:
There is a bit of network saturation occurring on the machine. This is
the result of users data being copied over. Several user accounts have
been transferred to this machine. Everything will be resolved shortly.
Again, we sincerely apologize for the inconvenience this has caused. If
you have any additional questions, please let us know.

Shortly was quite some time ago. Also, no time frame was given.

Still down. Been 2 days now. I know you get the fanboys who say “you can’t expect it to be up 100% of the time”, but I’ve never had a host where there was 2 entire days of downtime. Usually a hosting company has contingencies in place, and besides the occasional reboot of hardware issue, downtime is minimal.

What’s worse, the downtime is entirely within their control (according to above post). Not like it’s a power cut or hardware failure, it’s their policy to rearrange the servers users are on.

What’s down? The entire server, or just your sites?

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Yesterday I could ssh slowly, today ssh, ftp and http are all inaccessible.

Hrmm, then 302’ing probably won’t work. Can use Panel redirection?

Test a [random_number] redirect to or something.

If it works I could hook you up with a shell to run your sites on while they’re sorting out your server.

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Cheers for the offer but you can’t do that for everyone with the same problem (check the status blog) so I’ll just hang tight until DH an resolve it.

My site was moved from pico to mothman and pretty much since then, I’ve been getting connectivity problems to my database. My site is setup to email me most errors it encounters and I’m getting notified about once every couple minutes that my site either “can’t connect to the database”, “MySQL went away”, or the “MySQL client has run out of memory”.

This started happening around the time (deleted some email so can’t be sure) Dreamhost moved my account from pico to mothman for “performance reasons”.

I can connect to my DB form the web panel without error, and I can see the intermittant SQL errors on my site.

Even worse, I haven’t heard a peep out of tech support about this in 2 days since opening 2 support tickets. (!!)

I just opened my 3rd support ticket in 4 days about these problems. I’m due to be rebilled on March 3rd for another year of support. I made it a point of mentioning that I’ll be calling my credit card company today to get them to suspend any payments to Dreamhost until my support issue is resolved.

If others are renewing soon, I’d suggest letting them know that you can move your business elsewhere.

My site is back up now. I echo the comments above about the lack of communication.

Any explanation on what Support did to get your sites up again?


yep same has happened to me
various elements of my sites went down
i still have elements that are not working and have not had any response from dreamhost about any of my support tickets
are they just ignoring tickets about this?
as i know other people with diff issues that have been replied to numerous times during this fiasco

Sorry Scott, they didn’t provide any details :frowning:

heres the response i got to my problems since the move:

So I’ve looked over things and it would appear that this might have been
related to a network file server dataglob finding its way into your path
info somewhere along the line. Since the new servers don’t utilize file
servers in the same way, this has caused problems for a few users.

They as yet have not fixed this, if anyone can help let me know :smiley:

That means that your path somewhere has the .dataglob in it somewhere. It’d be nice if they clarified if this is somewhere in your home directory, or in a back end process. Their response has the sound like it’d be something you’d have to hunt down in your installations, rather than something they accidentally slipped in that’s out of your reach.

You’d have to do a recursive text string search in your home directory and database dumps to find this. In my case, I have everything (including database dumps) backed up locally on my home computer, so I’d use BBEdit to search for the string.


whats wierd is that before they moved me it worked fine
its only after having been moved to the new server that i have had this happen so i don’t exactly know where they want me to look because as far as i can see it should work fine

If you had some software with a config file with an entry that was something like:
And you had it =/home/.batcwa/USER/

It’d work fine in the old setup because the mount point from the old file server includes .batcwa. The new servers don’t use such mount points, so .batcwa no longer exists. You need to have:

By the way, using the path I just mentioned works on the old servers as well, which is what they recommend users do to prepare for that day when they slowly migrate accounts to the new servers.


Sometimes software doesn’t remove the dataglob from the path when it’s setting itself up - so you end up with paths such as /home/[color=#00CC00].something[/color]/user/etc/ in files like config.php and the like. The dataglob isn’t necessary for your software to function so all occurences can be safely removed.

What Scott has suggested is that you search your files and DB dumps for any dataglobs that might be present and remove them. It’s no small task and is best accomplished using something that automates the process (eg. I use UltraEdit which handles Search&Replace in all files and sub-directories).


I was too late, forget I said most of that :stuck_out_tongue:

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yep all of that has been done anyway as that was something i figured out early on.
my prob now is sumthing that by all intents and purposes should work.
but doesnt.
it deffo 100% works on other DH hosted accounts. Just not on mine, on this new server.
as i say all the file paths are free of all that home/.servername/user etc… stuff
it SHOULD work but doesnt.
i can post all the relevant code if you think it will be helpful?
nice one for the help tho!
much more fruitful than messaging DH themselves :slight_smile: