How often do the IPs on the shared plans change?

Hi all,

I currently have a DH hosting plan and need to point the DNS for another domain to the DH server. The DNS is handled outside of DH (and must be kept that way due to other restrictions in place) so I can’t change the nameservers. I’ve currently set things up so an added A record in my DNS resolves to my DH server properly. However, as the DH is shared and dynamic, I’m wondering if this is a good way to do things as the IP will probably change over time. I’m wondering if anyone knows how often the IP will change. If a lot then this won’t work as I’d have to constantly update my DNS which would be a pain and result in downtime. If rarely or never then all should be good. Thanks.

It’s anecdotal, but I’ve never had to change the IP of the one domain I have hosted at dreamhost but manually DNS’ed at my other host.

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Is there a special reason why you can’t change nameservers? That is the best way to solve your problem.

As you stated, creating A record is not stable since the IP address in a shared plan is dynamic. We have no idea how often DH changes the IP addresses. If you have to, you may consider to purchase a static IP :frowning:

Another solution, I’m not sure whether it works or not. You can try to point the domain to some free dns service providers such as, and modify dns over there and point to DH.

Good luck!

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As I said, I think the IPs are stable, they’re just not guaranteed to be constant for life. You may move to a different cluster, to a different server, or just assigned to a different IP. The DreamHost IPs are static in that they are not assigned by DHCP or anything like it.

BTW, if you’re talking about buying a unique IP, that’s a different concept and not related to whether your IP will ever change.

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Purchasing a unique IP address will not solve the problem, as unique IP addresses supplied by DreamHost are not ‘static’ and are subject to change, for the same reasons that your shared IP address might change.


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I’ve been sitting here thinking about the wiki’s use of the term “static IP address”. I also noticed that you put the term “static” in quotes. I wasn’t sure whether you mean to focus on the word or whether you were using quotes to indicate a non-standard definition.

Anyway, I want to ask people’s opinions about whether we should use the terms static or dynamic in the context of our server IP addresses.

I feel uncomfortable saying that our IP addresses are dynamic when we’re just saying that we could be moved to a different host.

I think that in the industry, the terms static and dynamic are used to refer to two different ways of assigning IP addresses to particular machines on a network. Static assignment is when a machine is explicity assigned an address. Dynamic assignment is when a machine is assigned an address automatically by a network server (generally a DHCP server) when it appears on the network. Of course, to confuse us all, there’s the form of static addressing where the DHCP server assigns the same IP address to a given machine every time.

Anyway, I wouldn’t want people to get confused by the use of the term dynamic, which to me suggests that each time the machine is rebooted it might be assigned a different IP address.

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I put it in quotes because I wanted to highlight that DreamHost assigned unique IP addresses are not static, at least not in the sense that the post I was replying to inferred they were (ie: perpetually non-changing). As far as I know, they are no more static than the shared IP addresses that are assigned by default. Of-course, the fact that they are unique and that particular IP address will be assigned only to the one domain does have its advantages.

Yeah, that’s the way I have always thought of the terms static and dynamic. That is, if the IP is assigned dynamically by DHCP then it is ‘dynamic’, but if the DHCP server assigns a pre-determined IP to a machine based on MAC address, or the machine is configured to always request a particular IP, then the address is ‘static’.

However, I get the feeling that in the context of this thread, the word ‘static’ was being used to denote an IP address that the customer would own and would be forever unchanging, surviving server changes etc. In the case of DreamHost unique IP addresses this is not the case.


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