Dreamhost plug

Anyone looking for web hosting right now would do well to take a look at Dreamhost. They’re currently running the same promotion that I signed up under last year: You can get the Level 3 plan for the price of the Level 2: $20/month. This deal is good enough that it might be worth picking up even you only think you might want it in the future.

Their service levels are ridiculously high. You can get the full plan details are on their site, but the major points of the Level 3 plan are:
  • 60 GB disk space
  • 1.6 TB bandwidth monthly
  • 12,000 mailboxes
  • 375 shell accounts
  • Unlimited number of hosted domains/subdomains
For all practical purposes, it’s unlimited everything, plus the disk space and bandwidth quotas automatically increase every week you have your account. You also get a whole host of other stuff, from the usual things like PHP4/5, MySQL, etc, to more specialized things like Ruby on Rails, Subversion, Jabber service, and more. They also have a great referral program so you get kickbacks for people you send to them (hence this post). Referral credit aside, I’ve been using Dreamhost exactly a year now and am a totally satisfied customer, so that disclosure shouldn’t taint this recommendation.

The usual caveats regarding shared hosting apply, of course. You’re still constrained by the system resource limits (ie, your web application can’t take too much CPU time) so you can’t run, say BoingBoing or Slashdot on one of these accounts, but most small to medium sized sites should be just fine.

Even the $10/month Level 1 plan is pretty good, and honestly still more than I need, but my discounted Level 3 plan is cheap enough that I’m hanging on to it anyway.


Dave says:

Thanks for the info, I’m considering Dreamhost myself. Asked them about Subversion because I couldn’t find any info on their web page. When you SSH in, is it like a normal unix/linux account shell with tools like vi, grep, etc?

kchrist says:

Subversion is available, but unsupported, so they probably won’t tell you much outside of “Yes, you can use it”. They don’t advertise it as a feature, but it is there. I don’t keep a repository on their servers, but I use the svn client to check out my sites from my local repository via svn+ssh rather than uploading via FTP or SFTP.

The shell accounts are complete. All the expected utilities are available: vi, grep, mutt, cron, scp, rsync, perl, curl/wget, you name it. You can also compile and install your own software in your home directory as long as it falls within their guidelines (pretty much just “No persistent processes”).

Feel free to post a follow-up or e-mail me if you have any other questions.

Avitania says:

I just signed up to the $10/month account, and used your domain (inmostlight.org) as a reference. Thanks for the tip!

My only confusion was their definition of “unlimited domain” hosting through one account — do they mean unlimited domain parking/redirects, or can each domain have it’s own site? It’s probably in the wiki somewhere, and I’m totally retarded and can’t see it.

kchrist says:

Both. You get unlimited redirections as well as unlimited “fully hosted” (to use their term) domains. A “fully hosted” domain is served from it’s own directory within your home directory and has it’s own Apache DocumentRoot, it can be owned by you or another user on your account, and it can have it’s own unique mailboxes.

I’ve got seven separate domains on my account (one redirected), plus four subdomains, which are also entirely independent. It will become a little more clear once you look around the domain settings in their control panel a bit.