Done with Dreamhost


#1

Well, the constant down time and slow site that sometimes works has been enough for me to move the site somewhere better… Yup, i’m paying a little more but my clients deserve better from an ecommerce site, right? Nothing worse than hearing “my” clients say that they couldn’t access “my” site because the host was down… Losing sales on my end is not worth the $10.00 a month saving… You’d be nuts to waste your money on a hosting company that lies about up time like DH does.

Anyways, i expect many other sites to be leaving DH soon as we have.

CYA!

Frank


#2

I am going to be DreamHost customer also in the future. These recent downtime has just proved that DH does know what they are doing.

When they realized what is going on they started actions to fix everything. Right after that they started implementing new measures to prevent such incidents in the future and now they even have offsite information site available. Plus they are really honest as they are communicating with us. I really like DH.

This is something I am looking for and I am glad I have found DH.

  • miikka

#3

I, too, will be staying with DreamHost. I have recently signed up some new clients with DH, [after the dDos attacks.] The good thing…they (DH) went through this (dDos attack) and have now learned a valuable lesson. Many other providers have yet to learn this lesson.

dDos attacks happen…and it is NOT DH’s fault. I realize the scripters will find a new way to attack…and the only thing that can be done is to find a way to hault the activity and move on…which is what DH did.

I will happily remain their customer, as well as my customers.

Honestly…if your customers are leaving you because you were down a bit, it is probably that they don’t want you and are finding an outlet…when I told my clients what happened, they all understood!!!

Dom


#4

Maybe it’s been unique to me, but my company site has had a few days in the last couple months where we were out of commission for the entire day.

People are saying how good DH did with the DDoS, but I just don’t see it. I couldn’t access any of our sites for the entire day, and also couldn’t access the DH home page, panel, or even send/receive any email.

It wasn’t until I finally called at 12pm that night that I finally got it fixed. So, the lack of support, downtime, and nothing more than a “oops, our bad” in response to the downtime is making me seriously consider other hosting options.

Maybe if things really DO change I’ll stay, but I just don’t see it. I mean geez, 24 hour ticket turnaround time? No telephone number to call, etc, etc… That’s all good when systems are working like they usually have, but I’ve seen the bad now, and when it’s bad, it’s BAD.

Maybe I’m being too hard on DH, but when people are trying to run businesses and we have a full day of downtime, it’s rather bad. ESPECIALLY when the only response was “sorry, we’ll try better”.


#5

Well im managing the site i have for a friend, but still, this isnt great. DH is down every hour or so, my MYSql doesnt wanna work all of a sudden, and some of this stuff they have is just confusing. Im obligated to stay because im not payin for it tho, lol my friend is and he likes it (alhtought he doesnt know the hardships im goin through with it), ill keep it up till the end of the month then if it still sucks, ill just have to tell him…


#6

[quote]Im obligated to stay because im not payin for it tho, lol my friend
is and he likes it (alhtought he doesnt know the hardships im goin
through with it), ill keep it up till the end of the month then if it still
sucks, ill just have to tell him…

[/quote]

I’d suggest telling your friend in as much detail as you can about the suckiness, then have him contact us directly. While some problems will just “go away”, sometimes it’s a recurring issue we’re not aware of and it won’t be fixed until one of us finds out about it and has a chance to look into it.

  • Jeff @ DreamHost
  • DH Discussion Forum Admin

#7

Dream host still sucks… However, the good news is that i’m very happy with my new hosting Co…

Thanks for making it easy to leave dreamhost and wish your few clients left the best of luck with their new hosts when they switch over…

Frank


#8

[quote]Dream host still sucks… However, the good news is that i’m very
happy with my new hosting Co…

Thanks for making it easy to leave dreamhost and wish your few
clients left the best of luck with their new hosts when they switch
over…

[/quote]

I’m happy to hear that you are satisfied with your new host, and hope that they will continue to please you.

That said, by no means do we have “few clients left” - unless by “few” you mean numbering in the quintuple-digit range. In fact, our growth has accelerated significantly in the last year or so, and despite any recent problems we’ve had our retention rates are still (by our estimates) roughly twice the industry average. I think it’s safe to say that while we’ll never make everyone happy, we must be doing something right.

Anyhow, thanks again for giving us a shot, and I’m sorry that it didn’t work out. Best of luck with your new host.

  • Jeff @ DreamHost
  • DH Discussion Forum Admin

#9

Don’t worry Jeff, if he’s lucky, someday he’ll wake up and understand that making blindfolded assumptions are just a way to compensate something in his own life, we can only hope for him to reach that personal growth.


#10

“That said, by no means do we have “few clients left” - unless by “few” you mean numbering in the quintuple-digit range. In fact, our growth has accelerated significantly in the last year or so, and despite any recent problems we’ve had our retention rates are still (by our estimates) roughly twice the industry average. I think it’s safe to say that while we’ll never make everyone happy, we must be doing something right.”

And that, to me, seems to be part of the problem. Dreamhost has grown too quickly. I know its not good to assume, but I remember when you couldn’t find any bad words regarding dreamhost. Your prices tended to be high for the features, but the hosting was solid.

Then the features were cranked up, people everywhere joined dreamhost, and service goes to crap.

Just because your business is “growing” doesn’t mean you’re giving good service.

There is a hosting company that I use to put on par with dreamhost. I won’t name them (although tha was almost a pun), but to me you were both at the top of the hosting game. I couldn’t say the same thing now. However, the other site is quite a bit more expensive than dreamhost for the same specs. In fact, to get anywhere near what dreamhost offers you’d have to pay 30 bucks. On the plus side, you hardly ever hear about downtime at that hosting company.

But many people couldn’t afford those prices, so they’ll put up with downtime and stay at dreamhost. In other words, just because people stay with you doesn’t mean its because you are providing quality service. It could be because you have great prices (dreamhost does), because of what little rep you have left, or because its just too much of a pain to switch.

Don’t get me wrong, because of friendliness and value, I’d still point personal sites to dreamhost. But if it was a business, I’d have a hard time going to bat for dreamhost.

And I think it all points back to what you stated. “our growth has accelerated significantly in the last year”.

I had another host I was with that was awful, and when I pointed out all the reasons as to how they were awful, I’d here about how large they were, how many clients they have, as if that proved they were doing a great job.

It’s a faulty argument. Wal-mart is taking over the world, and you don’t think of quality when you think of wal-mart. That’s where dreamhost appears to be headed without significant changes, and it really is sad.


#11

Well Jeff here is the simple truth since i’ve moved to a new host:

  1. No DOWNTIME
  2. High site access speed
  3. Phone support! I call them, they fix it and it’s done… No ticket needed, no wait time.
  4. My clients comment on how fast our site is compared to before and other site like ours.
  5. The Hosting Company does not have to state why they’re down, 'cause they’re not!
  6. They have spam blockers that work…You don’t.
  7. They do call backs, You don’t!

In other words, a hosting Company is paid to host, not to state why they’re not hosting your site as they should.

You’ve set yourselves up to be a cheap hosting Company and that’s the service you’re offering. But there is a limit to how cheap it can be and dreamhost has hit that limit.

Good luck all the same.

Frank


#12

There is nothing any host company can do against a DoS attacks such as the ones that hit Dreamhost last month. Even big sites as Amazon and Altavista got similar attacks in the past and they didn’t survive better than Dreamhost. Read this to know how they work and how much hard is to prevent them: http://grc.com/dos/drdos.htm

Now, if I can add my 2 cents about Dreamhost after reading so much criticism…

Dreamhost is one of the best companies I ever found on the net. They are fast in support, they allow customers to do whatever they need for their site (how many other hosts allow you to compile the software you need, eg. PHP5 or PHP4 with some extensions or whatever other thing? How many hosts gove access to mod_rewrite on .htaccess files?), they offer a lot of useful services. Yes, there are problems, as with any shared hosting that offers a lot and has accessible prices, but they usually are solved fastly. I’ve seen the servers hosting my sites (bitters and mayo) fixed even on sunday afternoon if needed. That’s really not bad and it’s something you don’t always get from an hosting company… Try to consider how many customers there are, how many servers, how many problems a company should face and how few problems about DH are reported on this forum and generally speaking in the net.

Also, do you really beleive to always get better services by paying more? It’s not always so.

My Parish site (which I’m webmaster of) is hosted on a company here in Italy. It costs a bit more than Dreamhost and its features are horrible: slow, old PHP version (they still have 4.0.6 and aren’t going to update it), very limited email and web features, ten times less traffic than the basic Dreamhost plan. And guess what? They have phone support, but the site (and the entire server) is down since three days and we can’t know why and when it will be restored. I’d love to move that site to Dreamhost, sadly I can’t for various reasons (we would end paying both Dreamhost and a local maintainer for our .it domain) and finding comparable services is really hard.

What I’m trying to tell you is that once you get used to Dreamhost features and their friendly support, is hard to work with other companies and that paying more doesn’t always mean get a better service.

To the one who criticized the newsletter humor… it’s the Dreamhost style, you can’t change it without changing the personal way to do business of this company and probably their mission statement. If they are still on the market since 1997 writing any month a funny newsletter it’s because their customers like this way to act. I admit that if you are on a bad mood you may find it irritating, but in that case… just wait to be happier and read it, you’ll find it relaxing :slight_smile:


#13

In case anyone has been reading the previous thread, or even cares, here is the “relaxing humor” mentioned above.

[quote]0. Introduction.

  1. Now, earn $65 a referral!
  2. We’re registering our own domains!
  3. We’re registering .info domains!
  4. Webmail spell checking for English, Spanish, French AND Swedish!
  5. The new router!
  6. DHSOTM.

########################################################################
0. Introduction.

Welcome once again to the DreamHost Monthly Newsletter, themed this
month with the most awesomest theme I ever themed. ME! That’s right,
it’s about time I put this whole newsletter-writing world straight, and
let them know who really rules the roost. Josh-a-doodle-do, baby.

I was just listening to that new Eminem song on the radio, and one part
really spoke to me, “I swear to frickin’ god, you frickin’ rock…” I
realized, “I swear to frickin’ god, I frickin’ rock”. Now don’t get
me
wrong… I may not be the smartest guy in the world, nor the richest guy
in the world, nor the funniest guy in the world, nor the youngest guy
in
the world, nor even the tallest guy in the world. However, I doubt
there’s anybody in the world who’s smarter, richer, funnier, younger,
AND taller than me! That is how hard I rock it.

Some facts about me:

I am smart: I got an 800 on the math SAT when I was 12. No joking.
I am rich: I co-founded a multi-million dollar webhosting company.
I am funny: See this newsletter, haters.
I am young: I was born March 4th, 1977.
I am tall: 6’5", naked.

So, please, if anybody can prove to me somebody who beats me in ALL
FIVE
of those categories, let me know, and next newsletter will be all about
them, I promise. I’m mature enough to do that. But they’ve got to prove
it man!

Here are some very close contenders I thought of:

Conan O’Brien:
Smart: He went to Harvard. I went to Harvey Mudd. He wins.
Rich: He hosts a late night TV show on NBC. I host an
e-newsletter
for an obscure web host.
Funny: He’s a professional comedian. I can barely spell comedian.
Tall: I hear he’s like 6’5" too… we’ll give him the tie!
Young: HA… dude is like FOURTEEN YEARS older than me!

LeBron James:
Rich: LeBron got $99 million for five years just from Nike! I
spend $99 on Nikes five times a year.
Funny: What a riot! Have you seen his Sprite ad where he crushes
the bottle behind his neck? HOWL!
Tall: LeBron is 6’8". That’s why they call him a MAN-child.
Young: LeBron was born Dec 30th, 1984. That’s why they call him a
man-CHILD.
Smart: LeBron didn’t even go to college… JOSH WINS AGAIN!

And that was all I could think of. Please, somebody prove me wrong!

I just noticed this is probably the longest intro I’ve ever written for
the newsletter. No biggy, I think it’s fair to say I deserved it.

########################################################################

  1. Now, earn $65 a referral!

One thing I didn’t mention in the introduction was just how much cool
stuff we got done this month! Of course, that’s not really the point of
the introduction. The point of the introduction is generally to
distract
you from how little cool stuff we got done this month. Old habits die
hard.

Anyway, new today, we’ve added a VERY AWESOME new option to our Rewards
program! It used to be that whenever you referred somebody to
DreamHost,
you got a 10% credit for of all money they paid us for as long as they
were a customer, plus 5% of all the money anybody they referred paid!

Now, you can still do that if you’d like, but we are also giving you
the
option to instead receive a one-time up front payment of $65 per
referral, plus $5 for any sub-referrals! To switch the type of
referrals
you’d like, just go to our Rewards area of the web panel (under the
Edit
Profile link at the top) and it should be pretty clear:

https://panel.dreamhost.com/id/?tab=rewards

And remember, you don’t even have to be a DreamHost customer (although
you are) to sign up at:

http://www.dreamhost.com/rewards.html

(You don’t need to sign up for it if you’re already a customer… just
give people this link: http://www.dreamhost.com/rewards.cgi?YOURWEBID)

Now, sixty-five bucks per sign up is a lot of money! “How can we afford
something like that,” you may ask? I told you: I’m rich, beeotch!

########################################################################
2. We’re registering our own domains!

Another super duper thing happened this month… something that was over
THREE years in the making: We finally started 100% registering domains
under our own ICANN-accredited registrar account! Even though we were
accredited more than two years ago, it wasn’t until this month that we
finally got all the paperwork and technical side of things complete and
actually went live registering .com, .net, and .org domains on our
account instead of Tucows (who we used to resell for).

This is a great time for us! What does it mean for you though? Not
much!
Well, the main thing is we decided to decommission Domainitron.com, and
move all the functionality of it straight into the DreamHost Web Panel
under the new “Domain > Registration” and “Domain > Transfer” tabs:

https://panel.dreamhost.com/?tree=domain.registration
and
https://panel.dreamhost.com/?tree=domain.transfer

Wow, I honestly can barely remember a time before we were working on
this. You know why? I’m young, beeeeotch!

########################################################################
3. We’re registering .info domains!

As a pleasant side-effect of finally getting our accreditation stuff in
order, we’ve been able to pretty easily add support for .info domains
to
our system now!

How does it work? Just like .com/net/org domains actually! You can now
get a .info domain instead for free with any hosting plan, or add them
for $25/year through the “Domain > Registration” tab mentioned above.
That’s all there is to it!

Note, you can also register .la domains through that tab! But, since
they are $50/year, you can’t use them as your free domain with a
hosting
plan. Sorry!

How did we add all these new TLDs so quickly and seamlessly into our
new
syststem? Hmmm… maybe because I’m smart, beeeeeeotch!

########################################################################
4. Webmail spell checking for English, Spanish, French AND Swedish!

Herre’s somegting that may be userul for som peopel… we nwo ahve spell
checking innstallled for not o nly english, but spanish frenhch, and
even SW@IDiths in our webmail client (swuitreelmail), which is avialble
for all domains ath:

http://webmail.yourfdomain.com/

I jknow I wont find a newd for it, but sint may be usefule for some fo
YOU!

Oh man, I’m funny. Beeeeeeeeeeeeotch!

########################################################################
5. The new router!

Now seriously folks, I thought I should take some time out of this
side-
splitting love fest and go into a little bit about how we’re coming
along in our network infrastructure stuff. Basically, what we’ve been
doing to keep what happened on March 29th from ever recurring.

Well, the main thing is we’ve got much better detection of DDOS going,
thanks to a new off-site network monitoring system we wrote up. In
fact,
since March 29th we’ve already had TWO more DDOSes, and each one was
more or less dealt with in under an hour. More awareness and earlier
detection are definitely the best defenses against this kind of thing.

We also still have http://status.dreamhost.com/ up at an off-network
location. Remember to go there for emergency status updates should our
web panel be down! We’ve also added a little script to send a list of
all the contact email addresses for our customer to the off-network
server so we have a way to email an announcement out to all our
customers should we be unable to reach our own internal databases! We
now know that good communication when there is a problem is about as
important as avoiding the problems in the first place.

Finally, on Wednesday we’ll be installing our new router, a new Cisco
6509 with two “sup2 engines”… whatever that means! According to
network
guy Jeremy though, this new router will “rock harder than you”,
although
I seriously doubt it. But honestly, it is supposedly 210x more powerful
than our current routers! That’s right, TWO-HUNDRED and TEN. Cool.
During the switch, there may be a slight bit of network downtime,
although our plan is to do it in such a way that there isn’t any. Of
course, something could go wrong. Be on the lookout for an announcement
by Monday at the latest with more details on when the switch-over will
happen.

We would have gotten the new router out even faster, but they needed my
help to install it. Nobody could reach up to the top of the rack where
we were going to put it, you see. Fortunately I’m tall,
BEEEEEEEEEEEEEE-
EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE-
EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE-
EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEotch.

########################################################################
6. DHSOTM.

This month’s DreamHost Site of the Month award goes to a personal
online
portfolio site (don’t they all?)… one by the name of:

http://www.atomdriven.com/

If you haven’t visited it yet, do it. Go ahead, do it. DO
IT.

If you don’t know what the DHSOTM contest is, or how to enter, visit:

https://panel.dreamhost.com/?tree=home.dhsotm

DO IT.

########################################################################

Bring on the competition,
Josh!

P.s. Maybe, like my girlfriend, you’re totally sick of hearing how
awesome I rock? That’d be pretty weird, but nonetheless you can
unsubscribe from the DreamHost newsletter via your contact preferences:

https://panel.dreamhost.com/id/?tab=contact

[/quote]


#14

“They are fast in support”

Simply not true. I’ve been at dreamhost for 3 years. When I first came here most answers from support came very quickly or within 12 hours. Now I never receive anything before the 24 hour deadline, and sometimes longer. That’s not opinion, that’s fact.

As far as you saying “paying more doesn’t mean better service”. Well, no kidding. And I think dreamhost’s best quality is that they are a great deal, lots of value for your money. However, service has suffered. (they use to be reversed…great service and high prices).

It really depends on what you want. If you do need better service there are other hosts that are slightly more expensive that give better service…case closed.

But for 10 bucks a month, dreamhost is where I’d stay.


#15

Hey Ryannet…

I was wondering, maybe there’s some technical problem with our support team’s communication with you or something?

Really, support’s been pretty on top of things for the last month or so, and hardly ever does a single message get to 24 hours old, and our average response time is getting close to 6 hours or so.

All I can think of is that maybe our email responses aren’t getting to you? Or are getting delayed somehow in their route. I wonder if something like that is happening. You can also always check the “Support > History” area of our web panel to see if we’ve responded to a message but you didn’t get it for some reason.

I dunno if any of that is happening, I’m just a little confused by what you’re reporting because I had thought things were actually improving in our support department, especially recently!

josh!


#16

Josh, only once do I remember a response taking longer than 24 hours. I completely agree that 99.99 percent of the time dreamhost responds within 24 hours, which is what you promise. Still, when I first came to dreamhost many times I would send in a ticket during the evening and would have a response before I shut down for the night.

The last 3-6 months I was here this wasn’t the case. I could almost count the response arriving on the 24th hour. Again, within your quoted response time. Still, it was disappointing that the average time had grown to its limit. I assumed it was because of dreamhosts decision to give much more for the price and the resulting spike in users.

I fully realize that gaining customers assures dreamhost’s future, and as I stated before for the money you can’t beat dreamhost, and dreamhost is definitely the friendliest host I’ve used, and the fact that you leave critical posts about your company up without deleting them, as some companies do, is a noble gesture.

But it does seam that the “mission statement” of dreamhost has changed, which has its good points and bad points.

By the way, I left dreamhost 3 months ago. Not because I was upset with service, but I didn’t need it, so maybe that’s why I haven’t witnessed recent developments. I’ll be returning in a month, and I hope to see the improvement. Thanks for the reponse.


#17

Hey,

Ah okay, yeah things were getting pretty backed up back then, and our average response time was definitely slipping. We made some pretty drastic changes about two months ago, which seems to have really improved our support turnaround… it looks like it was right after you left! :slight_smile:

Hopefully when you sign up again in a month we’ll be doing just as good as now, if not better! We do of course want to grow quickly, but we want to make sure we don’t grow faster than we can handle. We figure that’s just a recipe for disaster… better to take an extra year or two to reach a certain size if it means the difference between keeping a good reputation and losing it!

I appreciate your honest appraisal of our service, and I hope you’re happily surprised when you return.

josh!


#18

There’s no “perfect” webhosting service at all. Everything is competition out there. I’m quite fine with DH but is hoping they’ improve better CP interface for easy navigation. I didn’t like DH’s guestbook which is why I went with another kind of guest book.

This could be true. Can’t expect to have it 100% uptime 365 days a year. That’s why I noticed some webhosting says between 95 to 99 % uptime.

DH’s newsletter was hysterical humor!


#19

Hi Josh,

ID = #821257
Subject = Jabber IM - appearing as offine
Message Age = 1 mon 22 days

Care to comment?


TorbenGB


#20

Whoa!

I found your message… apparently it was sitting in Nate’s queue! For shame, Nate!

I guess he had a few like yours in there, all about jabber, and he was going to just put out a new jabber package, hoping that’d fix the various problems. But, it had taken longer than he’d thought, thanks to the various other emergencies in the past few months. He’s working on it now though, and hopefully by the end of the week he’ll have jabberd 2 out which will hopefully fix a bunch of the jabber issues, and then he’ll clear out his queue too.

I’m very sorry about your message being overlooked for so long!

josh!