Trying to get a friend's account re-enabled


Yesterday, a friend of mine who has (or should I say had) a Dreamhost account, received an email that simply stated the following:
"Your account(s) have been disabled for violating multiple parts of our
Terms of Service. Having multiple accounts, sharing account info, and
using your account(s) for data archival."
This was the entire contents of the email, with no instructions on getting the account re-enabled.
That last item, Using your accounts for data archival is kind of disturbing to me and my friend, since ironically he was in the process of moving the over 300 gigs of data he had archived to his account off on to a non-dreamhost dedicated box, when his accounts were abruptly disabled!
There is still about 150-200GB of data which my friend would like to move off of his dreamHost accounts, if it’s possible to get the account re-enabled just long enough for him to do this. Also he did have a web site on his Dreamhost for an internet radio countDown show he did, which is now inaccessible. Have other customers gotten similar such emails, and been able to get their accounts re-enabled at all? Or is my friend screwed and he will not be able to access his data, even to move it off of DreamHost?
I find it silly that DreamHost does not allow the archival backup of files, considering they give their customers more disk space than would ever be needed for any consumer web site! If a customers wishes to make an Easy backup of their files, what’s wrong with using DreamHost to do this if the space is offered to the customer?
Just curious to know what you all think and/or what your experiences have been if anyone’s had their account disabled for similar reasons.

Sharing of data between two points on a computer network regardless of method used, is not a crime, don’t let the **AA’s tell you otherwise!


Your friend would have to contact DreamHost support to ask for FTP access to retrieve his files. If they’re in a charitable mood, they’ll do it.

The TOS do state that files are supposed to be used for web hosting. Using the DH servers as a backup disk drive is a violation of the TOS. They supply users all that disk space in case their websites need it. However, he could offer to pay for that space. I think it’s like 20 cents per gig per month.



Please keep in mind that these are customer to customer forums, so if you want any official word on this, you or your friend would really need to contact support and ask if they can allow your friend to get the data.

As a bit of friendly advice, when you or your friend contact support, you should try to keep it polite and to the point. Basically, ask for enough access to get the data and leave, and maybe ask if you can remove the data and keep the account. I would strongly recommend against what you did in your forum post here, complaining about what you think the TOS, in your opinion, should be. When it gets right down to it, you’re asking them for a favor, since your friend certanly did violate the TOS, which means DreamHost really owes him nothing.

With respect to why DH doesn’t allow keeping archivals, I don’t know their specific reasons, but I can guess at a likely one. Most prominently, it’s a lot easier to generate a ton of backup data than it is to generate a ton of website data. And, like every shared host in existence, DH would probably go out of business if it was asked to provide all of the storage that it offers to all of its customers all at the same time. In DH’s case, they’re in the business of hosting websites, not keeping data backups, and if they were to start keeping data backups it would probably hurt their business greatly if not drive them under.

Best of luck to your friend in getting the data back.


I’ll go ahead and guess that you won’t get access to the data.

I’d also say that someone breaking 3 parts of the TOS, giving others account access, then having others do his speaking for him… probably won’t last long at any host.

Why wouldn’t it be? When an account is terminated, that’s what happens.

Finding the TOS silly and getting away with breaking it are two different things.

You not having a use for the resources doesn’t mean that:

a) Others don’t.
b) You can use it for whatever you want, just because it’s there.

With any host, it’s common sense to read and understand the TOS, then be sure not to break it if you don’t want to be terminated.

Having multiple accounts alone is grounds for both being terminated, so your other arguments really don’t matter.

I gotta say, I really don’t get the “I have to use it all because I paid for it mentality.” It’s like thinking you “won” if you spend the night puking after eating at an all-you-can-eat buffet.

What’s nice about having so much is that it’s there if you have a legit use for it, so you can grow into it if needed.

I’m sure anyone with a small low-traffic site has appreciated that if they’ve been hit with Slashdot/Digg/etc… traffic before. Had they been with the hosts that think they’re better because they don’t oversell, they’d either be shut off or hammered with a huge overage bill.

I barely make a dent in my available resources, and even though I’ve been paying for all of it for many years, I don’t feel the need to pin it by backing up my DVD collection.

:stuck_out_tongue: Maximum savings promo code: MaxSavingsAtDH


Thanks for the responses everyone. I’ve emailed my friend with the suggestions you gave. I don’t think my friend read the TOS, so he honestly believed that he had 500 gigs and 1000 gigs which he could use for any file storage needs he wanted. He even deleted files off his drive to gain more space since he thought they were backed up if he ever needed them again. So I’m hoping for the best and hoping since he now has a true dedicated backup solution elsewhere, then he can get the data off DreamHost and on to his other server. Again thanks all.

Sharing of data between two points on a computer network regardless of method used, is not a crime, don’t let the **AA’s tell you otherwise!


Wow. Just … wow. I’m sorry, but sounds to me like your friend has no business even having a hosting account. :wink:

Hey, I hope he recovers from his situation but I wouldn’t blame DreamHost at all if they just ignored him on this one. Good luck!



Wish I had a dollar for everytime I clicked through a License Agreement or a Terms of Service clause on the Internet…

End of the day it doesn’t matter if you’re aware of it or not, “Ignorance is not a defence” and all that hoo-hah.

Hope the move goes well kd :wink:


Yep, me too … but then again I doubt that you or I would proceed to set up multiple accounts, pass our credentials around, and then go off and archive 300GB of data without checking to see if such things were “acceptable” either! That’s kinda what I meant …

Yeah, how true that is! Hey, I also hope he gets his stuff moved … but i wouldn’t blame DreamHost if he couldn’t. I mean, they have already eaten the bandwidth once; they may not feel inspired to do it again.

I don’t think it would be that big a problem for them to just let him grab his stuff, but who knows what that stuff is anyway, and they may not want to be involved in “distributing it” or “transferring it” (even if it is only going back to him). :wink:



I went to an office supply store and bought a couple of external USB drives. Even the 500 GB ones are going for around $100. I keep one locked up at work, and one at home. Yes, it’s more expensive than a hosting plan, but it’s fast, reliable and nobody is going to complain.