Pre signup thoughts


Hey everyone,

I currently host a few websites on an apache webserver with c-panel based management and wish to sign up with dreamhost, where if I am correct the hosting is on debian platform. I have a few questions…

  1. What are the functional differences between the two hosting platforms…(I have no idea at all of whan an apache or debain is, its just what I grasped from viewing the forum) I mean should I know about some site/database features that work well with an apache severs but will have issues on dreamhost servers and vice versa…
  2. In c-panel all addon domains exist as subdomains to the primary domain and show up as directories under the primary domain, so that if a user has ftp access to the primary domain he or she can view (and modify) the content of all these directories/domains. Is it the same with dreamhost servers.
  3. Is there any condition on the domains being hosted under a single plan, one of the hosts I was checking out had a weird condition that all the addon domains needed to be registered under one name (that of the account owner) to be hosted under a single hosting plan.
  4. Does dreamhost support second and third level international domain names. (.ca, .uk, .in etc)

If I get answers to these questions maybe I will think up a few more…

p.s. One more thing, does the package have asp support, I did not see asp mentioned anywhere in the standard or addon features…TY


Hi Happy,

Apache is not a platform, it is web server used widely by Linux operating system. While Debian is Linux operating system itself. So Apache is running “inside” Debian (Linux os).

For database issues, if you have Apache/PHP/MySQL based application then DH just perfect for you.

CPanel is a web based control panel system which DH do not use. Instead, DH use use its own control panel which in most aspects I think is better than CPanel.

No, you setup domain/subdomain under a user’s home subdirectory with which you can define unlimitedly. Thus each domain/subdomain no need to have a root folder/sub folder scheme.

You can host unlimited domains under one account (one single hosting plan) you have with Dreamhost. However it will effected your server’s performance if those domains each got a daily huge visits.

Yes, it support “hosting” it. But not “registering” and maintain that registered domain for you.

Not at all !

Hope it will help you to consider DH. Actually, it is great hosting with the price offered !


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Kindly explain…if I am not exceeding my allocated bandwidth…could simple traffic be a problem…
Also you did not answer if there is any rider on all domains being registered under one name

You are saying it as if asp support were a bad thing…


It depends on what you mean by “simple traffic”, and bandwidth is only a part (sometimes actually a smallish part) of the overhead of hosting websites. I think what he was talking about is the CPU/memory resources used, and/or the number of concurrent connections - all of which are limited resources. :wink:

Hosting and registration are two different things. You can host anything that you can point to DreamHost namerservers. Bill can register and it can be hosted under your account if he has pointed the nameservers to DreamHost’s nameservers. At the same time, if Tom registers at a different registrar and points the nameservers to DreamHost’s nameservers, you can host under your account.

meh … “good thing”, “bad thing” depends on your opinion of it … it is a Micros*ft proprietary thing, and DreamHost doesn’t support it. :wink:



The performance comment was probably a red herring and you shouldn’t obsess about it.

The simple answer is that no, simple traffic would not be a problem. It is surprising how easy it is for people to get themselves in trouble with what they think is simple traffic. A bulletin board with lots of traffic and searches can exceed the capabilities of a shared hosting account. Heck, it can exceed the resources of a dedicated machine.

Wordpress, for example, is a simple, straightforward blogging platform. People have written plugins for it that would bring a dedicated server to its knees, though!

Dreamhost doesn’t even require you to register the domain with them. They’ll host domains registered anywhere as long as you can point them to Dreamhost’s nameservers. They’ll even host sites for subdomains where you’re hosting the parent domain somewhere else.

But are you asking about domain registration or domain hosting?

To answer your question about cpanel vs. Dreamhost on Debian. Debian is a Linux distribution - that is, it is a packaging of the Linux operating system built on top of the basic Linux kernel. You’ll find there are hundreds of different Linux distributions. Some of the other popular ones are Fedora/Red Hat, SUSE, Ubuntu, and Gentoo. FWIW, Ubuntu is derived from Debian.

BTW, it’s not clear that you understand this from your original post - Dreamhost does run the Apache web server. They run the full LAMP stack - Linux, Apache, MySQL, and PHP, that you’ll need for many of the most popular web applications that you see out there.

Here’s a post that explains the difference in directory setup between a cPanel host and Dreamhost.

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You can have it mimic that behaviour by simply adding each domain under one user account (you have unlimited users here as well) In essence each is a primary domain but sometimes it’s nice to have several available under “one login”. Much more freedom!
It always irks me the way cPanel behaves in that respect.



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I was doing some research about dreamhost on the net…
A lot of people are complaining about downtime and email problems…
Some say the servers are down (for a small time) regularly also issues with billing support etc…
The reviews did not mention exactly if these were old or existing problems…
Just curious how dreamhost is doing nowadays.
Just in case someone wants to know, my current hosting servers(for last 2 years) had a downtime only once(for <30 min), I faced minor issues once shifting domains (from addon to primary). Their ticket response is usually under 12 hours.
I am not quitting them, just that I want to add another hosting account and instead of hosting on them I thought maybe it would be better to host with another hosting provider so that I can organise my sites more effeciently and have backups in case one of them fails.


[quote]I was doing some research about dreamhost on the net…
A lot of people are complaining about downtime and email problems…
Some say the servers are down (for a small time) regularly also issues with billing support etc…
The reviews did not mention exactly if these were old or existing problems…
Just curious how dreamhost is doing nowadays.[/quote]
I’m sure these are existing and ongoing problems. I think I’ve mentioned in other threads that the biggest problem with shared web hosting is the fact that it’s shared. The other people on your server have the capability to write their site such that at certain traffic levels, your server grinds to a halt.

I think Dreamhost tends to be pretty lenient on you if your site is inefficient and is causing problems for your server. Many hosts will just cancel your account or immediately “throttle” you for one infraction. With Dreamhost, as long as you’re not paralyzing the server, they’ll give you a chance to fix the site yourself before turning you off.

But this forbearance causes problems of its own. It means that all the other people on the server have to live with the impact of your site on server performance until you get it fixed.

Anyway, the other aspect of this is that I’ve found that people complain about every other web host at the same levels. Well, I suspect that they complain about Dreamhost more because Dreamhost is transparent about their problems so people know about issues more than at other hosts and can more easily point fingers and ridicule them for their mistakes. Of course, this is why I love Dreamhost.

In the past year, I’ve had three outages - one due to DoS, one to a problem with a file server, and one to a bad neighbor. I somehow missed out on last year’s DNS issue.

You can probably avoid most DoS issues by going with a small, independent hosting provider. You can probably avoid NFS issues by going with a provider that doesn’t use a SAN - though you’d either be paying more for extra filesystem redundancy or taking the unknown risk of not having a high availability filesystem (and only having backups).

I’ve had good ticket responsiveness. Then again, I write up good tickets.

Well, Dreamhost has their oft-mentioned 97-day money back guarantee if you pay using a credit card or Google Checkout.

My personal opnion about selecting a web host is that my ability to do what I need easily and expediently is the most important criterion in my selection of a web host. Content and creativity are king. As long as I have the time and freedom to create the site to the best of my ability, the web host that maximizes this ability is the one that I will pick.

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too technical for me dos, san, nfs…redundancy …mind simplifying?


A Denial of Service attack. What it amounts to is a server becoming overloaded with a lot of frivolous requests. The idea is that the server will be doing so much work trying to keep up with the frivolous requests that it won’t be able to serve up customers who actually want to use the site legitimately. Bigger hosts are more likely targets of a DoS attack because more people know about them and it’s more impressive to bring down a big company like Dreamhost than it is to bring down your neighbor’s PC.

The attack details can take a number of different forms, but one of the most obvious is a hacker that installs a virus on a lot of different computers all over the internet and sets the virus to start hammering one server all at once. Odds are good that someone doing this will be able to slow down or even stop the server from handing legitimate traffic; like, say, a customer browsing your online catalog.

A Storage Area Network. To oversimplify a lot, think of it as a really big, really fancy external hard drive.

The Network FileSystem. Basically, what this lets you do is have all of your files on one computer, but give another computer access to those files as if those files were stored on a local hard drive. NFS allows a number of different computers to all access the same set of files so that, as an example, Apache can be running on one machine, SSH on a different machine, and both are reading the same files which have been stored on yet a third machine (the SAN).

One of the things that the SAN does is create automatic copies of all of your files. These aren’t backups, exactly, but it does make it less likely that one of your files is going to disappear if a piece of hardware breaks – a big concern for a large web host like Dreamhost. The redundancy comes in because, if something happens to the hardware that your file is stored on, the system will automatically switch to using its redundant copy and, ideally, as a user, you’ll never know the difference.

Google and Wikipedia can surely give a fuller description, but hopefully that’s enough to at least give you an idea.


I don’t mind at all!

All I’m saying here is that (though I am overgeneralizing) there small web hosts and large web hosts have different problems that are sort of unique to each segment.

Large hosts can take advantage of economies of scale to take advantage of enterprise-scale hardware which can give enterprise-level features like high-availability disk and transparent backups at bargain-basement prices. On the other hand, large web hosts are often targeted for various service attacks - like denial of service attacks, either because they are large and well-known or because they have more disgruntled clients or would-be clients or because they’re hosting more sites that people have some beef about. A small web host is less of a target.

I just realized you may not know what high-availability disk. Just know that it means that your data is “protected” from a disk (or two) going bad. We’re not guaranteed that here at Dreamhost, but a decent number of the filesystems here are on RAID 6 which means that you’re much less likely to need to recover from backup. (Apologies to the techies for the gross oversimplications in this paragraph)

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