I don't believe there's any way to chage the format of the lags or to use redirects there. It's not the support wouldn't be willing to update this for you, but that any time you make changes in the panel for the domain, it rewries the httpd.conf file so it could end up being a contat back and forth thing. (changes like your php version, owning user, fascgi on/off...)
stoping and start httpd in this way would effect all of the other users on your server though, so that's a definate no go for shared hosting.
I guess it's just Dreamhost is providing what people are used to. Telnet and FTP are both aviable, but SSH and SFTP are also accessable.
Databases are stored on seperate mysql servers, not on localhost. Data storage there still counts against your total though. Also, your regular data isn't physically stored on your server either, it's a NFS setup. That way as dreamhost adds on more storage they just add it to the general pool, not to each and every server.
You can still access mysql database through SSH, you simply must specify the hostname and database. It is also possible to access the mysql database from an otehr server or your home computer, but you must allow access by IP through the Control Panel. Also, phpmyadmin is installed by default (but still falls victum to the 7mb php upload limit).
Databases and data in your home directory as also backuped on a regular basis. You can access One hour ago, two hours ago, one day ago, two days ago, one week ago, and two weeks ago in the .snapshot directroy. I believe mysql is backup just as often, but you must do the restore through the panel.
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