IP Blocked for checking mail? + Rude Chat Help = Over it with Dreamhost

I have 3 email addresses. My IP has been blocked for ‘too many connections.’ I spent two hours on an incredibly unhelpful chat with Alex C. yesterday who kept telling me he had lifted a block on my IP address and it had been cleared and would I get off line. So i asked more questions til the time that he said it would take had passed. For example: If you are telling me that I should have fewer connections, what do you think is a proper prescription for that?" His answer was: “I can’t tell you. it varies.” or “That’s not something I can share.” and “can you get off the line, I can’t wait for this to reset.” But I didn’t and it still didn’t work. He said “well use a different mail client.”

Are you kidding me? I need to switch all my mail to a different client because your service doesn’t work? So I tried viewing my mail in Outlook (while he’s telling me that he can’t wait for me to do that.) as well which also does not connect. I was told to limit the frequency that I use/check my mail. It’s only 3 email addresses. That shouldn’t break the bank.

He also said “well email is just a free service we provide.” NO IT’S NOT. I pay for it. It is part of the package I was sold. Access to my email. Via my computer. Via my mail client. It’s very easy. This person continued to tell me he couldn’t help me or to do things that did not correct the issue. There was nothing more he said. Finally he hung up on me. Your ‘knowledgable person’ hung up on me.

I have had it with Dreamhost. I really wanted to like it. But you don’t hang up on people. You don’t tell them ‘the free service your paying for is free so deal’. You don’t just sit there giving continuously vague answers hoping I’ll just take the bait and hang up. A lazy customer service rep who simply doesn’t want to dig any deeper than the surface is what I get apparently. And that is not how you win customers. I used to recommend dreamhost to everyone. Those days are definitely over.

I am happy to send a full transcript of the chat. You might find it anyways and read and it and hear me getting increasingly frustrated. it’s because I was: to have the same answers repeated back to me and sometimes making no logical sense… and then just going back to stock answers to get me off the chat like some kind of robot., It is belittling and infuriating.

Please correct this asap. I’d love to talk to someone but I shouldn’t have to pay ten dollars to get a call from someone to fix a problem that you have created. Nor do I want credit or anything on my account. I just want to have my email working correctly. I also don’t want to talk to someone like I already did who is simply intent on getting me off the line by telling me ‘no it’s fixed’ even though it wasn’t.

Hey Michael! I’m Sean, a support manager at DreamHost. I apologize sincerely for the poor experience you’ve had with support this week and I’d like to make sure it doesn’t happen again for you or anyone else. You are 100% correct, as our email hosting is only available with an active hosting plan (shared or otherwise), it is unfair to call it a free service. Our web hosting services have historically held a higher priority than email services, but it is no excuse and we have been hard at work the past year to improve our email infrastructure.

I’m glad that we were able to reach you by phone today, and I hope to have this issue cleared up for you as soon as possible. While the email accounts appear functional, it also seems something is causing redundant connections from your network to ours. Some email client settings commonly cause these issues, due to the fact they open new connections each time they search for mail (this is ideally not the case of course). If the IP block is still active, new/other client connections will still not work. We are reviewing the additional information you provided us (thanks!) and Kacy will be back to you again soon.

Aside from assisting Kacy in getting to the bottom of this, I’d like to review the chat you had to improve the quality of our support. For some reason, it seems this chat has not been saved to your support history yet, in spite of the fact it was initiated from the web panel of your associated account (I am assuming). In your next email reply to us, please feel free to include your copy for my review. You can also send it directly to my personal support queue, if sent from the contact address on your account: seanh@dreamhost.com

Is there any list of email client settings to avoid?

@monjo I don’t think there is such thing (my colleagues may correct me if I’m wrong). In the old, early days of internet, many providers would put blocks for any client that would open a POP3 connection too often, whatever that meant for them. With modern IMAP extensions, those blocks are not necessary anymore because most email clients and servers have become smart enough to communicate without taxing anything (including phone batteries.) Just use a modern email client, with IMAP and things are likely to be good. Personally I use Thunderbird on the desktop and Aquamail on my Android devices: both suck (all email clients suck, by definition) but I gave up on trying others.

After attempting to connect via a completely clean install of OSX on a different computer, I still cannot access my email from any of my accounts via MAC MAIL. We went through various traceroutes, etc. There is nothing wrong with my own email client. It also did not work via Outlook.

Furthermore, the tech support has stopped responding to my emails which, incidentally, were perfectly straight forward.

This is the last straw. i do not recommend Dreamhost to others. At this point, it’s worthless if, as a very small business, I cannot have a basic thing like my email working.

After ‘escalating it’ I have never received any messages again from dreamhost and it appears that you dropped the ball.
So I will be dropping Dreamhost ASAP. Also, you charged me $10 to call me about a problem that your tech person couldn’t fix - and even made up stories about why it wasn’t even worth fixing? So the guy didn’t care so you charge me $10 to put me in touch with someone who does?

This is really, really distressing to read. I came here today because of several email related issues, although not the same issue as yours. Having read this whole thread, I have to seriously wonder - if they didn’t follow up here, after having publicly said they would, what hope is there for the rest of us? I’ve been here years and have never had issues like this. I am now seriously starting to lose the trust of some of my clients because of email problems. If Dreamhost is not committed to providing reliable email service, that’s a dealbreaker for sure. Not to mention failure to follow through on a matter after having publicly promised to do so. or that $10 charge you got, talk about adding insult to injury. or even the disappearing chat record. This whole thread is a hot mess. :stuck_out_tongue:

Yep. Not a peep. DH email actually kind of sucks. They have terrible spam filters compared to others and very little that you can do about it. Email is a serious part of the game - not just some additional service to provide.

I still haven’t heard back. I’ve been looking for a new VPN.

My sincere apologies again for this experience, Michael. I was upset to find out today that your support thread had been incorrectly moved, and that indeed you have not received any new response from our support team as a result. This is not something that normally ever happens here, and I am more than understanding of your attitude toward the situation and company. This is our mistake.

I’ve run new tests on the email account and have painstakingly searched for any hint of a block, but everything looks clear today. I hope my email and account credit find you well. If this is something I can still help with at all, please reply to my email with the requested details or drop me a message here, and I will be glad to continue the investigation personally.

@michaelpada: I’m curious, if you don’t mind sharing, was the account credit you received just for the $10 you should never have been charged in the first place, or was there more to it?

You know, from where I’m sitting right now, rude chat help sounds pretty good. Because if you go to Live Chat right now, you get “Sorry, we aren’t online at the moment”.

I went there to try to find out what’s happening with the ticket I opened 8 hours ago. Because all I’ve heard is crickets. Because all you can do with a ticket here is cancel it. You can’t update it. You can’t forward more relevant info. You can’t inquire as to its status.

I suppose I could open another ticket to do any of those things. I suppose I could also bang my head against the wall.

The problem is, of course, email related, as are all the tickets I’ve opened in the last year. I finally bit the bullet and set up an account at dedicated mail provider, MXRoute. I have moved one domain’s email there so far. Now, mail from a still-at-dreamhost addy is failing to forward to an addy there. It’s hard bouncing. That’s what my ticket is about.

A few minutes ago, I opened a ticket at MXRoute, in case the problem was actually at their end. I got an auto-reply in one minute. I got an actual live person reply in six minutes. Having checked the MXRoute logs in those six minutes, he confirmed the problem is at Dreamhost. He told me what is most likely wrong and needs to be fixed. Which I would gladly pass on to Dreamhost if, you know, live chat was live, or there was a way to update my ticket, or if they actually replied to me, ideally with an actually helpful answer.

I feel like my hand is being forced here. All my mail is going to MXRoute as soon as I can co-ordinate with each client to move it (which is not unlike herding cats). I am really looking forward to spending those essentially unpaid hours doing that. It’s a good thing web hosting here is better than email hosting, given the current status of both live chat and the ticket system. I’m really sadder about the support sucking than the email, and trust me, I’m pretty damn sad about the email. If anyone wants more info about MXRoute, pm me, I’d be happy to share what I’ve learned.

And don’t think I don’t realize that the big winner here is Dreamhost. They will continue to get the same amount of money from me for a significantly less valuable product. I resent having to reward bad behaviour and won’t forget this.