What's Up With Support?

Maybe I was spoiled for the many years I was a Dreamhost customer, but I just received an automated message apologizing for not responding at all to my request for support.

I have made very few support requests. I have made even less with any urgency at all.

Is Dreamhost dramatically reducing it’s support staff to customer ratio?

Seems that way.

From the outside looking in, what I see is that it depends on the issue. Sometimes they are very good and very prompt. I think however there are certain types of issues (usually hardware failure related) where the post a note in the panel that the hardware is being replaced and then ignore all the tickets that come in about it, until they actually have something to say. From dreamhost’s viewpoint I get this, but from the average customers viewpoint (that probably doesn’t read forums, and might or might not have seen/understood the panel message) it’s really quite unsettling, they are expecting a reply and should get one, only if it’s to say sorry there’s nothing we can do to speed this up.

I’ve been with DH for about 5 years now and I seldom need to contact support, but I feel like their responsiveness and response quality have both decreased noticeably in the past year.

Hi irthinker,

I do sincerely apologize for the delay in response from our support team. We try to answer all submitted tickets within our 24 hour guarantee (though most get answered typically within a few hours), but sometimes it takes a bit longer – which is when we send out those automated messages. At times our support queue gets rather large, especially when we’ve had a rough week (see: dreamhoststatus.com), and it’s during these times where LakeRat’s answer comes in:

I completely understand how frustrating and unsettling it can be when you, as a customer, encounter issues and need an answer right away. I can assure you we do our best to answer all of your questions urgently and as thoroughly as possible. I do again apologize for the delay you’ve experienced, however, and very much appreciate the feedback – which I will pass on to the higher-ups and make sure we use it to improve our support team!

Also, if there are any tickets you’ve submitted that you’d like me to look into, just respond here and I’d be happy to do so! Thanks so much for your patience, and for your loyalty as a DreamHost customer as well.

What support? I’ve been with DH for a few years now. It has always seemed like a hassle to move my sites, but I must. They are trying to kill my business. Three days response on my site being hacked. My site won’t allow me to change a font color without a 413 error. My file permissions are permanently restricted. It goes on and on…


Firstly, I’d like to apologize for the delay in response. It is never our intention to kill your business! If you’d like to provide your ticket number or domain, I can look into the status of your ticket and make sure someone’s on top of it. Thanks so much for your patience.

You like automated messages? Try this one on:


This is just a notification that your message has been moved to our mail blocks
queue. This queue is information that our abuse staff uses to determine who is
blocking us, why we are being blocked, and at around what time period we are being
blocked. Your ticket will be used for information purposes only in helping us get
the block removed. You may not receive a response, but you will be instrumental in
helping us get this issue resolved faster. Thank you for your mail block report.

The DreamHost Ticket Moving Robot!"[/i]

I have SIX tickets surrounding the issue of my mail being blacklisted by ISPs! But support thinks it’s okay to tell me that i “…may not receive a response”!

I can’t even register members!!! Which forces me and my staff to spend all our time backpeddling to convince new member applicants that we are not fools! All this began for me three weeks ago when our sites got moved from California to the newer, faster, better servers in Virginia and our IP address changed. At this rate I’d be better off with an older, slower two cans and a string!

This looks like legit usage for a copy/pasta response. Block Reports affect multiple users, so any remedy to a block will not be unique to yourself and man-power is better spent on relieving the block than replying to redundant tickets.

That might depend on if all your tickets were block reports. I’d think that if one or more of the 6 tickets you mentioned is a query rather than a report then the ticket will still be considered “live” and you’ll get a heads-up message when everything is fixed :slight_smile:

I noticed some of the larger email hosting servers were blocking the mailserver they have me on a couple of weeks ago, but the blocks appeared to be clear last time I checked (mailserver: homiemail-sub5). Which mailserver are you on?

It would be nice if the ticket moving robot’s message said something like “your ticket has been reviewed and we believe you have included sufficient information, if additional information is needed the abuse staff with contact you directly, if no additional information is needed you may not receive a response.”

… a little more user friendly (and hopefully a true statement :slight_smile: )

That’s a great suggestion! I’ll be sure to pass it on. :slight_smile:

my apologies for taking so long to get back here, but have been so busy putting out fires & to date have found this board fairly useless.

Yes, i am also on homiemail-sub5, and got 5 new “Return to Sender” blocks yesterday so for me at least it remains ongoing. And there were queries in the first 3 of the tickets I posted. After that I just gave up asking anything 'cause I knew I was being ignored. So,… do I continue to submit tickets for the 5 new blocks? Feels like a waste of my time!

Seems like my time would be better spent finding a new solution.


I can assure you, you were not being ignored! You’ve actually just been emailed a short while ago. However as you’ll read in the reply: [quote]“Normally, we do not reply to reports of mail blocks, as these are recurring problems with some providers, and generate huge amounts of support requests. This is common for all shared hosts, and not just DreamHost.”[/quote]
Submitting tickets is definitely not a waste of time, as without the tickets our Mail Block team will not be aware of the problem with the block, so submitting the ticket is important. I apologize if we’ve caused any frustration! If you have any concerns, please feel free to reply directly to our email as suggested. Thanks!

It is reassuring to know that submitting my tickets is not a waste of time. I will continue to do so. However, it would certainly be helpful if someone could tell me what I can do to help minimize the problem. It seems like if “…these are recurring problems” there should be readily available information about it from DH so we can help minimize the problem!!! Information regarding DKIM/ADSP &/or SPF records integrating with DH’s systems.

Dreamhosts wiki says nothing and trying to search through the forum here was tedious at best considering the burden placed on my time due to the blocked email issue. I have been with Dreamhost for almost 14 years and have watched other forms of growing pains. I’m willing to accept some of that. But if I can’t use email, or forms on my sites,… I am crippled! Am I supposed to tell my clients & web visitors not to be upset, this is normal?

That ain’t gonna work!

Firstly – 14 years! Thank you for your loyalty, we really appreciate it :slight_smile: You’re absolutely right, and bring up some great points. Unfortunately, that’s the nature of shared hosting as well as of email. Anyone can create a blacklist, list an IP, and then either refuse to de-list, or require you to jump through as many hoops as they want. Recipient providers should ensure they are using only reputable lists that are easy for legitimate mail providers to work with to get removed (we use Spamhaus for this reason). If you are not sending bulk email there is nothing you can do to prevent blacklists from happening. You could, however, minimize impact by using a VPS or dedicated machine which would give you your own IP for PHP/webserver mail. Unfortunately, that would not help for client-based SMTP mail.

We’d also like to add that especially when needing to send in bulk or with extra sensitive/critical content/addresses, our regular email hosting may not be the safest option. In general, our web hosting and cloud services are our main focus, and if our email services fail yours and your clients’ expectations too often, it may be worth looking into specialized mail hosting services for your domains. Google’s mail hosting, though no longer completely free, remains a good option and our panel can help set the DNS for you. There are many others of course, but comparing them would depend on your needs.

I did a quick search of the forum for the thread that you’ve created that outlines your issue, what you have tried to do in order to troubleshoot the problem, and why what you’ve tried is not meeting your expectations. Either the Search function is broken, the forum glitched out when you posted it, or you haven’t actually started a thread.

You might try creating a thread specific to your issue.

Agreed!! Yahoo, et al, act like they are King of the Road while providing little or NO actual support!

i did not realize that [i]every[/b] issue needed it’s own thread. I guess I was hoping that I wasn’t the only one having this issue, because if I am the chances increase that it is something that I am doing wrong! I have researched PHP Mailer header files in hopes of finding some magic bullet.

Nevertheless, it sounds like DH is doing what they can so if I continue to have this issue I will look into DH_Ellie S’s suggestion of finding a more robust mailing service. It sounds like the default service provided by DH is intended for general purpose use, which has worked for me & mine for a L-O-N-G time! But the SPAMmers are a persistent bunch!

Thanks to all for your help in this matter. I’ll let you know the final outcome in a couple weeks.

NetMaster Family of Services

You’re welcome! Glad we could be of some help at least. :slight_smile: Keep us updated!


Maybe someone can help me as well. I was in the middle of troubleshooting a problem with real cron jobs that a technician kindly helped me to set in place. And then communication stopped: it’s been 84 hours. The thing is I got those automated message after sending my last email, with a ticket number, telling me they new it was more than 24 hours but they would get back to me as soon as possible. 84 hours later, nothing.

The ironic thing is that this pattern repeat in… sales! I was looking to move to VPS but had some questions. I send said questions to sales. Got a generic answer about pricing which did not address my question. I politely (always very politely) send back my questions. Again with the automated email telling me it’s been more than 24 hours, but they were trying there best to answer my question. For sales, it’s now been more than two days since I send those questions and I haven’t got an answer yet.

What can I do?


Hello Philippe,

I apologize for any delay in response. I have looked all over our support queues for any tickets with your email address and was not able to find any. I’m sorry for any frustration this may have caused, we ask that you send our support team a ticket here https://panel.dreamhost.com/index.cgi?tree=support.msg& or if you already have a ticket# or a domain name. Please provide that info here so I can look into this mater right away. If you have any other questions please do not hesitate to hit us up. I thank you for your patience and politeness during this issue, it is very much appreciated :slight_smile:

Matt C