The deterioration of dreamhost forwarding

Starting a few weeks ago, I noticed that it was taking dreamhost up to 4.5 hours to deliver mail that was sent to my domain and forwarded to gmail. I did my research and recognized all the issues, I sent in a trouble ticket and dreamhost proved to me that it was google’s issue. I contacted google support and sent in a prayer (they don’t really communicate with users who aren’t paid). I changed my forwarding from gmail to apple and I noticed in the last two weeks that at peak times durning the day dreamhost’s mail servers slow down by up to 90 minutes of delay. I’m just forwarding a message, no muss no fuss. Dreamhosts reply to my support issues were:

[quote] apologize for the email issues you’ve experienced recently. Our mail
system was seeing some delayed email delivery when customers are using
our Junk Filtering Service. Systems administrators were able to determine
that the servers received a spike in incoming mail, which slowed down the
routing internally. No incoming email have been lost, it should only
cause delays. The admin team is working extensively on balancing out the
incoming mail to catch up the current queue. This is why some messages
might be more delayed than others. We understand that email is important
and we couldn’t agree more. We are working on improving our email
infrastructure and looking at better ways to combat the ever growing
issue with spam. However, making such changes take time. Again, I am so
sorry for the inconvenience! If there is anything else you need help
with, please let us know! Thanks! [/quote]

But I’m not spam checking the email! I have a straight forward. Right now the dely is at least 30 minutes.

I am having what sounds like exactly the same issue, there was/is an up to 5 hour delay between the dreamhost server and the gmail server. I got the same response from dreamhost. I also went and checked the Junk Mail options to find them all turned off.

There is more information here:

I have triple verified that we are not using the spam filters Dreamhost has installed, they acknowledge the filters can be a cause for delay, but even in your link, after checking the filters again, they are all turned off. Seems to be the same with the OP.

I admit I know very little about the backend of how email works, and will attach two screenshots for email header reports. So according to Dreamhost, and these reports the delay is being caused on gmails side? I’m willing to try to contact google, but want to make sure the problem is on that side. Any help is much appreciated.

Screenshot from Gmail header analyze tool:

Screenshot from

We’ve had problems, too. The problem happens most weekday mornings, and it’s a real pain when you are trying to work and your emails aren’t showing up.

I don’t think those screenshots necessarily indicate the problem is with Google. They show that the email was “received” by Google from Dreamhost 5 hours after it was “received” by the Dreamhost server. That could be a delay at either end, but honestly it’s a lot more likely it’s at Dreamhost’s end because I would expect a server to timestamp the email just as soon as possible when the email arrives, rather than letting it sit in a queue for a few hours; on the other hand once you timestamp it there are a lot of things that could go wrong while you process it and figure out where to send it.

The issue is still with Dreamhost. From the DreamHost status site:

Our company has decided we’ve had enough of the delays with Dreamhost and are moving to Google Apps.

It’s now April 4, about 3 weeks after the first mention of the slowdown on And they’re still wrestling with it.

I wonder if they’re ever going to solve the problem, or just keep updating us that they’re clearing queues, all seems to be good now… oops, peak hours, same thing as before! But we cleared them again, all is good now… oops, peak hours again!

It’s getting kind of silly.

I like Dreamhost, but they clearly don’t like hosting email. I wish they’d just partner up with someone who does. Gmail used to be doable until Google did away with the free plan.

One thing I’ve learned through all these issues with Dreamhost’s email is that if you want business class email service, you’ve got to pay for it.

There have been several posts on these forums telling us this same fact.

Forwarding is a bad solution in general. Mail providers hate it because it often results in the same spam being sent over and over again, and sometimes if makes DMARC policies shit bricks. If you use gmail, the best solution is to use gmail as a mail client to check your mail at DreamHost with pop3. Google has instructions on how to do that here:

Doing so won’t deal with delays in junk or sub4, but will negate delays in the final forwarding.

I switched to “Gmail Checks Dreamhost via POP3” - as recommended by dreamhost, but that has its own challenges.

Gmail decides when to check. Sometimes its 30 minutes. Sometimes its an hour. And there’s no way to force it when you’re on a mobile device.

This is a terrible situation to be in. Either random 1-8 hour delays using email forwarding in the morning, or guaranteed delays using POP3.

Apparently gmail decides to check based on how frequently you get e-mail. In some ways, this makes sense, but makes for an awful user experience in a world where we’re accustomed to push notifications.


  1. Get more SPAM
  2. Set up a cron job script to send you an e-mail every N minutes.
  3. Pay for Google Apps (wow, its pricey!)
  4. Hope that one day both Dreamhost and Gmail supports imap push instead of just pop3.

Hello, is using Gmail the best solution ?
Do you confirm that checking websites email with pop is better ?

And can you tell me why, on domains with spam filter enabled, the spam is also forwarded to the Email where I forward all my domains messages.

Thank you.

Closing this old thread too. Email products have changed a lot in the past years, both on DreamHost side and on Google side. If you have issues, please open a new thread sharing as much details as possible about what you’re trying to achieve, what you expect to happen and what actually happens.