Catch-all EOL mitigation

I’ve given out dozens of catch-all email addresses over the last decade and I’m going to be inconvenienced by the upcoming EOL of this feature. I can stop giving new addresses out, but it’s not like I kept careful records of the old ones. I’d love it if Dreamhost could record which of these addresses are used between now and the EOL date and make it easy to set up regular forwarding for them.[EOL announcement:]


Yea, Same issue here, Every time a company , store or site ask for an E-Mail I tend to just use (CompanyName)

Great way to track who’s letting your e-mail out into the wild.

What I’m going to have to do is using outlook sort all the e-mails by “TO” and that will give me at least a psudo list of what E-Mail addresses I’ll have to generate (going to be a pain after a few years of giving it out)

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I’ve been doing this for 20 years, the last 12 of them on Dreamhost. I’m not going to stop. I will be leaving. Or figuring out how to host my email elsewhere. Ugh.

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One other “solution” (and might be useful for some) Depending on how easy it is to constantly modify

Is the Bulk Forwarding Settings.

Split my Catch-All into Groups
And then just (SomeNewStore@domain) -> Stores@domain
Might help with management a bit on my end also.

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Like the others, I’ve doled out dozens of throw-away email addresses to services that require an address but to whom I don’t want to give my personal email. I have zero record of them, and I’m not even sure if any of them have been used before.

I’m now facing the prospect of splitting my email hosting from my site hosting and all of the DNS wackiness that comes from this policy change.

According to The Rationale given, there are three reasons DH is killing catch-alls:

  1. Domains with a catch-all attract an overwhelming volume of spam. This degrades performance of the mail system for all customers and delays delivery of legitimate messages.

  2. DreamHost’s Vade anti-spam servers cannot be enabled on domains with an active catch-all address, so the large volume of spam messages sent to these domains cannot be filtered or blocked.

  3. When a catch-all mailbox is forwarded to an external email address (either directly from the catch-all or through an intermediate account) DreamHost’s mail system gets falsely identified as a spammer by a number of global blacklists, negatively impacting the outbound deliverability of all customers’ email.

To me, the answer is simple: if allowing catch-all emails is costing DH money by forcing them to deal with more volume, then charge more money.

I would gladly pay extra each month for each catch-all I have in order to not have to deal with the pain of leaving DreamHost and finding a new hosting provider.

As a side note, the second point seems like a red-herring: the point of a catch-all is to “catch all emails”. So of course spam filtering isn’t going to work, because I’ve explicitly said “I want everything”.

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Same problem here… looks like DH wants some users to leave…
May be the time to look for another place to host my domains :-/

I have 10 domains registered with DH, I only use catch-all in 3 of them, but the number of emails i have given in the last years is impossible to remember (I’ve tried catching some of them to make redirections, but I got tired after a few hours). It will be easier to find another provider who still allows catch-all.

There are dozens of possible solutions that DH could implement to avoid the “problems” of catch-all, but it’s simply easier for them to send us the problem, and just stop supporting that service (btw, that service was included in the price… so, will they reduce the price now they are reducing the services?).

If somebody knows about any good provider who offers catch-all, please let us know (I hate moving, but I already had to move my dedicated server away from DH, and it looks like they’ll force me now to move my domains too).

After 11 years being a DH client, it’s really sad to see how their service becomes worse and worse :’-(

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I hope DH will reconsider its decision or at least allow catch-all addresses on sub-domains. This will solve the problem with too much spam arriving. The spammer would then need to guess the subdomain in order to send his messages since subdomains are not in any public whois database.

I understand the spam problem and that’s why I switched to catch-all addresses on sub-domains only a long time ago.

The catch-all addresses are an essential part of my email communication and it’s a must have for me. Now I need to reconsider my options, either set-up my own email server or change my web hoster :worried:

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Sorry to say… but I don’t think that DH will reconsider this. Catch-all has been disabled for new registrations in the last years (I noticed when I registered a new domain 15 months ago, and couldn’t set up a catch-all account; support told me that service was not offered anymore to new domains… but lied to me, saying that old domains may keep that service).
So… this is not a “NEW” decision, they’ve beeen planning this long time ago (and not telling users till now).

You may need to reconsider your options… sorry :worried:


Ditto to what all was said so far. Really disappointed. I’ll be leaving Dreamhost too. Also would appreciate any suggestions? I’ve used GoDaddy in the past but there must be better options.

This is a huge problem for me, for the same reasons. I’ve given out hundreds of {companyname} email addresses, have no good way of recovering that list let alone entering them all as new aliases.

I’ve been with Dreamhost since at least 2009, really disappointed.

Where are people going? I’ve reached out to a few hosting providers to ask into their catch-all email support.

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Just searched Twitter for tweets mentioning DreamHost. Many are suggesting FastMail. Never heard of it. Might just go back to GoDaddy.

If DH wants to at least improve customer service, they should just disable the Catch-All feature and not blindly delete the accounts and entire mailboxes.

Please do not blindly delete user email accounts that happen to use a feature you want to discontinue. Just disable the feature.

For what it’s worth, I just migrated all of the contents of my catch-all email account to one on FastMail MW. Took just minutes. I haven’t decided if I’m going to go through with the domain transfer etc. But it was far less of a hassle than I thought. FastMal also does offer the catch-all feature. You just set up an alias *

I’ve been a DH customer for 14 years, this change really pisses me off. Exactly like many have described, I have used the catch-all mechanism extensively as a per-signup way to avoid exposing my primary email address. Heck, that’s how I’ve discovered sites getting hacked (like motley fool and lastfm). DH’s argument for changing this is lame.

I’ve tried out fastmail a long time ago, I won’t do business with them ever again after their lifetime fee fiasco. So any suggestions on another host would be most welcome.

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Bluehost claims to support catch-all [Edit: they lied, Bluehost don’t support it]. I’ve read that most cPanel hosting providers do. Anyone have experience there? Good/bad/indifferent?

If I cancel my hosting, can I leave my domain registrations at Dreamhost for the time being, or do I have to transfer them to another registrar?

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After 10 years, I’m leaving Dreamhost over this. Thank you to Dreamhost for giving me a deadline to accelerate my migration. I had already started migrating my HUGE collection of domains and websites to another host because your service and customer support has become horrendous. I saw this coming too… Now I know that I need to hurry up. This is like a “Hurry up and F&@# off!” from Dreamhost. For anyone looking for catch-all support, 1 and 1 (*I cannot post the link because Dreamhost is blocking my posts as spam if I do. Hah.) still offers catch-all functionality and you’ll pay a fraction of the price. Bonus, all my sites run much faster there.

Over the years I have used hundreds upon hundreds of aliases using catch-all email accounts, which is pretty much an industry standard feature among hosting companies. Basically any account I signed up for had a unique email address… which is a practice that needs to BE ENCOURAGED. I have never had one account “hacked” because of this. It would be devastating and impossible to have to lose access to those accounts because you guys aren’t willing to handle the bits and instead want to cut pennies in cost. Your services are already very highly priced and poor performance, the least you could do is support basic services.

I left GoDaddy a decade ago to migrate to Dreamhost and it truly was an awesome company… then a new CEO showed up and I have seen a drastic decline in customer service and service quality… and now this.

Discontinuing a vital feature not enough? Thats okay… you’re going to DELETE ALL THE ACCOUNTS AND MESSAGES TOO! What the hell? Who thought that would be OK?

Adios Dreamhost. You’ve become such a nightmare that I’d rather go back to GoDaddy (!!!) than to stay with you.

And don’t bother responding to any of us with the standard patronizing PR story “We’re sorry but oh well.” None of want to hear that BS - The right answer here would be to LISTEN to your customers and CHANGE COURSE when we tell you you’ve done wrong. Apologies are not accepted.

NOTE: I am NOT AT ALL affiliated with that company I mentioned and I am not spamming at all, despite Dreamhost claiming the people are reporting this post as spam repeatedly and then hiding my posts (Which I don’t believe for one second…) I am just really pissed off that Dreamhost did this to us (and me after 10+ years as a customer) and I have found a better company to work with and I’m trying to help their angry customers.


You can definitely host your email elsewhere and leave your domains at Dreamhost…just redirect your MX records. Although it would be a good idea to transfer them all anyway - Not only is it technically easier, but who would want to give Dreamhost more money when they treat their customers so badly?


I use them all the time as well but only as a forwarder. I have used the catch-all for over 12 years, probably closer to 15. So I have hundreds of accounts set up with random email addresses.

Also I don’t think their reasoning applies to me:
As I simply forward the email I don’t want DH to do spam filtering, it is done at gmail for me so it shouldn’t matter how much spam is forwarded.
And I am the only user for my domain, so if someone mistypes an address I still get it (which is also sort of the point).

So after after 12 years of dreamhosting I am in a pickle. Plus I just paid for 2 more years.

I am thinking of using AWS SES to make a catch-all forwarder, its a bit more work up front, but seems like it would be a real cheap option.
Any one else tried this?

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We apologize for any inconvenience, core services (email hosting) is not being discontinued. Our priority is to stabilize and secure infrastructure. From time to time, older features present themselves as a hold back to allowing for that. For a list of recently used emails, please send in a ticket here

I probably have hundreds of catch all emails that I use to (ironically) reduce spam to my email box and track emails that are coming in. Using the + character to make email address’s on the fly rarely works for most webforms as a ton consider this an invalid character. It also does not prevent someone from removing the +unique bit and now send the real account email with no tracking capabilities.

I just have one catchall mailbox that I have configured gmail to log into to pull email content - the mail is deleted by google and I’m not forwarding it anywhere and I’m also not using up processing power to check emails for spam so this solution is not really a resource drain on the dreamhosts servers and manually adding all the email addresses as an alias is just a resource drain to me.

I’ve discovered a couple of companies that have been breached due to suddenly getting spam sent to a companies unique email address (including one government tax department).

I’ve asked dreamhost support for a list of email address’s that have been used in the past and ideally a way to programatically add email address’s as aliases to a mail account. Yes I can add an alias manually but I’m sure shops are going to love it when they ask for an email address and I have to pull up the email editing webpage during checkout (although enough of us do that, it might be a good incentive to quit asking for that information :wink:

Having used Godaddy, 1and1 and companies being bought up by EIG in the past, it’s getting harder and harder to find a comparably priced email and hosting solution but if anyone has some good alternatives to mail and hostng for a comparable price then please update here.

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