Dreamhost Web Hosting

This week I’m finally moving NoDivisions from a Bytemark server to a Dreamhost server.

Bytemark’s virtual machine setup with full root access has been pretty cool, but it’s also been fairly buggy: for the past few months, it’s been a weekly occurrence (sometimes more often) that the system becomes unresponsive and needs to be forcibly rebooted.  They also only offer 4 GB of space and they cost about US$250/year.

Dreamhost on the other hand offers over 20 GB of space (and growing weekly) for only $97/year.  I’ve had the random outage here and there with them, but even when that happens, they are the ones who fix it, whereas with Bytemark, having root access to your own VM, you need to do the full-time system administration.  While I enjoy that at times, and am even pretty decent at it, my focus is on web programming so the admin issues can get annoying.

So anyway ND will probably be inaccessible at times over the next few days as the DNS changes propagate.  This also means my @nodivisions email accounts will be intermittently unavailable during this period.

Posted by Anthony on 9 replies


01. Jul 4, 2006 at 09:47am by Anthony:

Well, that was quick!  If you’re reading this, you’re seeing this site on the new server.

02. Jul 4, 2006 at 01:48pm by Kev:

Yup, I can see it fine. Earlier the site must have been in transition, because there were a lot of errors coming up. Only the header and some info on the right hand nav bar worked. Good luck on Dreamhost.

03. Jul 4, 2006 at 01:49pm by Kev:

I just noticed that the time is in PDT...

04. Jul 4, 2006 at 03:38pm by Anthony:

Yeah, there’s that about it.  I contacted Dreamhost about this a couple months ago, and they said that they can’t adjust the server’s time zone on a per-domain basis.  So I’ll be adding a time-offset option to my blog app over the next few days, so it can be set to a less liberal zone.

05. Jul 4, 2006 at 07:22pm by Anthony:

Testing... the EDT time is now 7:22 PM.

06. Jul 4, 2006 at 10:22pm by Kev:

Nice, looks like it is  working. 10:21 PM here in NY...

07. Jul 12, 2006 at 02:17pm by Kev:

Hey Anthony, do you like the Dreamhost control panel? A lot of people seem to not like it saying that it’s slow and ugly, and sucks because it is not a standardized panel like cPanel. What are your thoughts?

08. Jul 12, 2006 at 06:31pm by Anthony:

I’ve seen complaints like that about the Dreamhost control panel, but I’ve been pretty happy with it.

I wouldn’t say it’s ugly.  It might not have a lot of "web 2.0" sparkle, but it’s decently organized and I never have a problem finding what I need.  Of course the aesthetics of the app are totally subjective...

I also haven’t experienced any significant slowness with it.  Occasionally I’ll try to visit the panel, or click a link within it to go to another page, and it just never loads.  So I click it again and it comes right up.  I’d say it does this slightly more frequently than the average page/server, but not enough to bother me.

As for it not being "standardized", cPanel may be a de facto standard (but I’d say even that is debatable), but it’s not a real standard in any meaningful sense.  I’ve used cPanel on a few clients’ servers, but never on any server that I managed full-time, so perhaps I’m biased to not care whether a given panel is like cPanel.

(For that matter, on my Bytemark server I did everything manually, with no panel at all, and did just fine because I tend to be comfortable doing things at the shell.)

The bottom line for me is that the Dreamhost panel works.  So I don’t care if some people think it’s ugly, nor if it’s occasionally slow, nor if it’s like/unlike some other panel.

09. Jul 12, 2006 at 08:33pm by Kev:

Thanks for the insight. I used a really crappy interface that was home grown by a hosting company a few years ago, and it was unbearable. Going to cPanel after that was a million times better. I am now used to cPanel, but like you, I’m most comfortable at a bash shell.

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