Be careful!

If your website has any value be very careful with dream host… If anyone is angry or disgruntled at you than can simply file a complaint to dream host and get your account dissabled… And to get it resolved could take weeks… I had a dissgruntled user and they filed a spam complaint to dreamhost… boom, my account was dissabled with no warning what so ever… And continues to be dissabled… Also, I have been denined any access to my files or databases!

Thank you, Anonymous. We’ll take your advice under advisement.

Simon Jessey
Keystone Websites | si-blog

Why do these people with their useful advice always show up right after I bought a WHOLE YEAR of hosting?

Itsa disgrace, I tellya.

There is a good possibility that the user was really a spammer and got shut down over a valid complaint. The DH staff at not usually :wink: mindless drones. So chnaces are that this is not somehting the adverage user hs to worry about. But DH isn’t in the businessof hosting people who spam, so be careful.


DH folks don’t come across as idiots in my book, Mr. Anonymous, btw your forum account wouldn’t be locked since it technically isn’t connected to your primary account.

Anyhow, they wouldn’t have locked you unless you were truely sending out spam. Now, it could be that somebody used a security hole in your scripts to spam people or you’re doing it yourself. Either way, it wasn’t a frivolous complaint that got your account locked.

Heh. Safe to say that (sometimes) sarcasm doesn’t play in forums without the proper emoticons; really, I’ve seen the type of language the OP used in similar venues (Usenet, maillists) before and I was just chiming in with Simon’s sentiments on the matter.
In any case, the “heads-up” is appreciated, if perhaps a bit unnecessary.
ObSmiley: :wink:

ps: I’m a new customer, but let’s just say that I aint just falled off the turnip truck yesterday.

Well, it just happened to me. I had no idea that announcing a new site in Usenet that isn’t trying to sell anyone anything was an issue… I was announcing a new forum to people I thought might be interested. Apparantly they aren’t. I’m new at this, I had no idea this was a problem. I was just trying to promote a new forum to people that I was testing out… man, what a mess.

Unfortunately this is all affecting my main website which I care a lot about, and many people look at every day.

I don’t know what to do about this… I just spent a bunch of money on a large code monster account for the established web site, and I’m sure that’s not the domain that the spam problem is with. (

As you see, I’m not posting anonymously here… this is a real problem for me right now and I hope to get it resolved quickly. I have nothing to hide. I’m still very new at this webmaster stuff and apparantly made a big mistake for which I’m very sorry about…


Steve Hopkins (and another site which I was only testing :frowning: both of which were hosted here)

[quote]Well, it just happened to me. I had no idea that announcing a new site in Usenet that isn’t trying to sell anyone anything was an issue…
I’m still very new at this webmaster stuff and apparantly made a big mistake for which I’m very sorry about…[/quote]
Silly question perhaps, but how long have you been using Usenet? Every newsgroup I’ve ever toddled into has it’s own preferred etiquette, and much like any other discussion fora, it’s going to blow an ill wind if you start using it for announcements instead of discussion. DH has a clear warning in their TOS about such things:
"Electronic forums such as mail distribution lists and Usenet news groups all have expectations regarding subject area and appropriate etiquette for posting."
If you didn’t investigate those expectations it’s roughly the equivalent of shooting yourself in the foot. Checking through Google, you posted several different announcement/spam style posts over the past months and every time received a slew of very hostile replies, including several requests from as far back as March to “Please take your mini-chinese-buggy spam foo somewhere else. Thank you very much.” If you don’t bother about such requests made to you on public forum by its participants, you’re definitely bucking for trouble.
In DH’s anti-spam policy it’s specifically stated:
"Predominately promotional messages must not be posted to bulletin boards, discussion forums, guestbooks, Usenet newsgroups, or any other similar service unless the operator of that service explicitly allows such messages. In the case of Usenet newsgroups, such messages must be specifically allowed in that group’s charter."
Now I realize you’re saying you’re not a profit-based organization, but the posts you made definitely are of a promotional nature, and unfortunately, you signed the contract not to violate those policies.
Unfortunately, hosting providers can suffer greatly if immediate (…and often draconian) action is not taken against offending users, including, but not limited to, blacklisting of their servers - and that affects ALL OF US other customers here.

If you’d have managed this as a single offense, I’m sure it would have warranted no more than a slap on the wrist, but seeing as the abuse was committed over a series of months and you had several opportunities to discontinue your abuse, I suspect you have either a) a long fight on your hands, or b) a short walk to your next hosting provider.

In any case, best not to bitch-n-holler too much and just chalk it up as a learning experience.

[quote]In any case, best not to bitch-n-holler too much and just chalk it up as a
learning experience.



In a nutshell, we usually disable accounts for one of three reasons:

  • Confirmed cases of spamming.
  • Failure to get back to us in a timely manner upon being asked about a potential spamming event.
  • Getting back to us with false/misleading information upon being asked about a potential spamming event.

Yes, we’ll disable a user’s account after a single complaint if we can confirm independently that they were spamming. A lot of people are surprised about this, but I’m not sure why they should be - if you’re not in compliance with our anti-spam policy, you’re not in compliance with our anti-spam policy. However many people actually notice and take the time to complain is pretty much irrelevant (in fact, even if nobody reports you and we happen to notice ourselves, ie. heavy loads on the server, we’ll take action then as well).

In any case, if your account is disabled after a single complaint, the person who submitted the complaint didn’t get your site shut down - you did. You’d be amazed how many people blame it on the complaining party even when presented with proof that they weren’t compliant with the policy (one of a few reasons why we don’t divulge the identities or email addresses of those who complain without their prior permission, aka. ‘list wash’).

Really, the best way to prevent one’s account from being disabled is to carefully read our policy and follow it. If there’s ever any question as to what is and is not acceptable, we will always make ourselves available to explain it in detail or answer questions. This is one case where reading the fine print really can save you some trouble down the road.

  • Jeff @ DreamHost
  • DH Discussion Forum Admin

I definately know this for certain now.

It definately will not happen again.


I will say that of the thousands of email spams I have traced over the years, none of them came from DreamHost.

A zero-tolerance for outgoing spam is a good thing, and something I think all Internet providers should enforce. However, it is vital that such policies be administered accurately.


Besides blocking port 25 ISPs cannot do much. A lot of recent scumware is able to pickup SMTP settings so if an ISP doesn’t have SMTP authentication or is using password authentication but not encryption than the scumware program is able to just use the ISPs sendmail server.

If the ISP calls the user and tells them their computer is “infected” and how to clean it and the user doesn’t the ISP can’t do anything but disconnect them.

I guess the only way would be to educate the user about malware/spyware/virii/scumware and if they don’t follow the “rules” than kick them. If I see kazaa on someone’s desktop three times after fixing their computer for free I won’t help them anymore. ISPs should do the same.

I applaud DreamHost for it’s anti-spam policy.

You got a complaint about me and didn’t shut me down…

… of course, that one complaint was accidentilly submitted by me, through spamcop, when I forgot to uncheck the admin of a site (my site) mentioned in the spam from an SEO company. hehe :smiley: