Empty directory problem

This is definitely an “ID ten T” problem, so it should be easy for y’all to solve…

  1. I registered 3 domain names with godaddy;
  2. next I created a hosting account here with Dreamhost;
  3. I used sftp to upload an index.html file and a JPEG that my cheesy “placeholder” page displays;
  4. then I logged into my godaddy account and changed the nameservers to ns1.dreamhost.com etc.
  5. I performed a tracert from a WinXP terminal window to my domain name, and amazingly the 10th hop was right into apache2-heavy.persephone.dreamhost.com; that was fast!
  6. I then tried to direct my browser to my domain but I got an empty directory, and then tried to open “www.mydirectory.com/index.html” but got a 404.
  7. I just logged back in to persephone and I can see the html file in /home/.sox/dsprichard, but again my browser comes up with an empty directory.

What am I doing wrong?

DNS record changes can “wobble” back and forth for a while after a change. It all depends on the route taken between the client and the server, which is usually different for each HTTP request.

If you post your actual domain name, someone else can check too.

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scjessey is correct about the “up/down” nature of DNS updating, but I think you have a different problem.

Your “/home/.sox/dsprichard” directory is not web accessible and, short of some scripting magic, things you put there will not be visible via the web.

You might have forgotten a step “2.5” in your list above - you have to tell DreamHost to host your domain via the “Add a Domain” link on the Control Panel -> Domains -> Mangage Domains screen of the DreamHost backend.

This creates the DNS record for your domain in the DreamHost DNS system, creates a directory for your domain to be served from in the /home/.sox/dsprichard directory, and lets you set certain other characteristics for your domain.

Once this is done, you upload your index.html into that directory, not the /home/.sox/dsprichard directory. You can host unlimited domains on DH without further cost - so you may have several such “domain base directories”. Then, once DNS updating is complete (which, in your case, it looks like it already is!), you will be golden. :wink:

It may be that you actually did complete step “2.5” (since you got an empty directory listing at one point) but just put the index.html file in /home/.sox/dsprichard directory, instead of in /home/.sox/dsprichard/directory/yourdomain.tld. If that is the case, putting the index.html file in the proper directory should then be all you have to do.


Not having my web content in the subdirectory was the problem. I didn’t see anything about that in the help pages or wiki content.


As rlparker explained, you missed one step. After you point the DNS to dreamhost, you need to add the domain to your hosting plan via DH panel --> Domains --> Manage Domains --> Add Domain / Sub-domain

After you do this, you should upload your web pages to /home/yourusername/yourdomain.com folder. To do this, you can use your own FTP client software or use DH panel DH panel --> Domains --> Manage Domains --> WebFTP / FTP

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Good deal, I’m glad you got it sorted out! :slight_smile: