After 1 day of downtime it's now back up and running. No response or explanation from support yet though.
This episode has pretty much made my mind up to move away from Dreamhost now. About 735 dollars per year is a bit much to have unreliability and 24 hour support response times. Had this happened in about a months time this would have been crippling to me so at least I can act now before I've rolled out some stuff essential to my business.
The frustrating thing is I like the way Dreamhost works, as in the features and the control panel (since they revamped it). Everything is straightforward to use. I just wish I could find a dedicated solution with the Dreamhost control panel thrown on top and I'd be happy.
One thing that's not clear to me is security with dedicated solutions. If the web and mysql software is on the same box, just how secure is that. If I have one user setup related to a blog, and another user setup related to more essential stuff (as I currently have it with Dreamhost), how hard would it be for someone who hacks my Wordpress blog to gain access to the mysql files on the harddisk. That kind of thing.
Good advice to ask questions upfront. I'm currently making up a list of requirements. It's knowing where to start that's the problem. Knowing what the limitations of other control panels etc. A bit daunting.