I’m thinking about trying out Dreamhost for Web hosting. I’m definitely not staying with TextDrive — I had to wait two hours to post this because the server crashed again. Unacceptable. I’ve heard good things about Dreamhost and did the requisite “dreamhost sucks” Google search to find contrary opinons. There are definitely some customers out there who have had bad experiences, but they seem to be in the minority.
The number one question for right now is, can I run my own install of Movable Type 3.2 that uses cgiwrap or suexec, so that I don’t have to make my directories world writable if I want scripts to be able to store files in them?
The other question is, of course, how reliable and responsive are they? They have an emergency status weblog which has few entries, either because they only report really big problems or don’t have that many problems. (You can contrast it with the TextDrive Status page or Pair.com’s system notices.)
By the way, you can see the difference between pair.com and TextDrive from the respective status pages. Pair.com has hundreds of servers, and yet when a server crashes (or even requires replacement of hardware), it’s rarely down more than 10 minutes. My server at TextDrive crashed this morning, and it was down for over two hours. Here’s a status update from pair.com:
eiga (www326) encountered an error and reset. While it was down, a new chassis was put into service. The new specifications are a Pentium 4 3.8GHz with 2GB of RAM. Downtime was under 15 minutes.
The obvious question you’d ask yourself is why I don’t just go back to pair.com? (I could easily do so. In fact, I didn’t even cancel my account, I just downgraded to the cheapest package.) The answer is that I had a rough time getting Movable Type working there, and if possible, I’d rather pay Dreamhost $8 a month than pay pair.com the roughly $33 per month that I used to pay.
I’m trying to do more due diligence this time, though, so if you hate Dreamhost, now’s your chance to get it off your chest.