Dreamhost Reviews

  • Unlimited Diskspace
  • Unlimited Bandwidth
  • Solid State Drives
  • 1-click WordPress installer
  • Subversion Support
  • Free SSL Cert
  • 97 Day Money Back Guarantee

From $7.95/mth

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Founded in 1997 by four friends from their college dorm, DreamHost has been around from the very beginning and continues to thrive as one of the largest independants, serving upwards of 1.5M sites and applications online.

For our DreamHost review we signed up for their cheap Shared Hosting Plan.

DreamHost Provisioning and Installation

DreamHost offers instant provisioning which we like, but doesn’t use the commonly used Cpanel, instead providing their own control panel software. If you are familiar with Cpanel this will require a bit of a learning curve, but it isn’t complicated. DreamHost do provide an installer so getting WordPress setup was easy and painless.

DreamHost Systems and Support

DreamHost provides support 24/7 via live chat, email and Twitter. They do not provide phone based support, not that we have ever needed it (and we do use Dreamhost for some projects).

DreamHost Load Test

DreamHost’s Load Impact performance results were unchanged in this latest round of testing (though worse on the Pingdom testing as below). The average user load time for our DreamHost review site stayed consistent with an average of 1.1s for the duration of the test while the number of concurrent users increased to 100. They are not the fastest, but they are still amongst the best and most consistently well performing. Unlike the last test however we did see some server request failures in this round of testing as reflected in the chart above. This is not ideal and we do dock some points for this in our rankings.

Rankings and performance data for all WordPress hosts we tested.

DreamHost Speed Test

DreamHostResult
YSlow Score83
West Coast Load Time1.91s
East Coast Load Time1.17s
Average Page Load Time1.57s
DreamHost Uptime99.86%

DreamHost scored of 83 on the YSlow test which was amongst the highest. Their average Pingdom home page load time however got slower in this latest round of testing with an average of 1.57 seconds (up from 1.37s). This is noticeably slower than the best performing competitors with average load times under 1 second (such as Siteground and Bluehost).

Our DreamHost test site has had 99.86% uptime in the previous period.

About DreamHost

Dreamhost, a Los Angeles-based web hosting provider and domain name registrar, was founded in 1996, back when there were only a few thousand web pages total, so they’ve been around for a while. They offer shared, VPS and dedicated hosting, cloud storage and other services for small businesses and developers who don’t have an in-house IT department.

They host about a million sites. Dreamhost doesn’t offer phone support, but you can pay to have them call you back for support, or chat live with staff when things aren’t too busy for them. Live chat’s always on for you if you paid for the callback option.

They’re a popular choice for web design companies and developers since if you pick their shared hosting product you can host unlimited domains, get as many email accounts as you want and set up reseller accounts as well.

In addition to standard shared, dedicated, VPS and WordPress hosting they offer cloud storage packages.

If you’re a bit more techie sophisticated they offer a self-managed open source cloud server option, where you can scale at will, you have full root access and you can choose your own OS (Dreamhost offers Ubuntu as their default option).

FAQ’s

Do they charge any setup fees?

In the past, there were sign up fees associated with opening some select shared hosting plans. However, those fees have been discontinued. At this time, there are no longer any set up fees involved when opening up a new DreamHost account or hosting service.

I run a charitable organization, do they offer discounts?

Yes. To use DreamHost’s charitable nonprofit discount program, read about it on their Non-profit Discount page. The discount applies only for a single shared hosting package per organization. Hosting packages that are already discounted as the result of a sale or other special promotion are not eligible to receive this discount.

Do they accept payment by mail?

They do, just bear in mind that it can take 4–5 weeks for a check payment to clear and be applied to your account. So you’d have to mail in your check payment early to ensure that your account is not suspended while DreamHost waits for your financial institution to approve the funds. DreamHost uses a mailbox service that makes weekly deliveries of mail, so other mailed payments (such as money orders) can take up to two weeks to post to your account. Credit cards are probably a better idea.

How good is the shared hosting?

They’ve added solid state drives (SSDs) to their shared hosting so pages now load 200% faster, making it pretty quick. Their shared hosting plan supports any kind of site including blogs, portfolios, business sites, online stores and even complex database-driven sites.

What does “unlimited” disk storage and network transfer really mean, in practice?

It basically means you don’t have to worry about disk storage or network transfer when your site gets popular. You do still have to worry about if your site’s well optimized and is causing issues for others on your shared server (either because it’s pounding the CPU, hogging RAM, or doing tons of disk I/O), and in that case you may be asked to sign up for a DreamHost Private Server. Most all hosts do this.

What kind of sites are not allowed under the unlimited offer?

Any sites whose essential purpose is to use disk or bandwidth, such as:

  • Copyrighted content to which you do not hold usage or distribution rights.
  • File upload / sharing / archive / backup / mirroring / distribution sites.
  • A site created primarily to drive traffic to another site.
  • Making your account resources available (whether for free or pay) to the general public.

If you’re just running a legit site, you don’t need to worry.

How about email accounts?

Go ahead and create and manage as many email addresses as you’d like with unlimited POP/IMAP/SMTP accounts, plus unlimited auto-responders.

What’s the support offered?

All of their hosting plans are backed by an in-house customer support team. They’re there for you 24/7/365 via live chat, email, and Twitter.

Disclosure

This page contains affiliate links which means we earn a commission if you click through and signup. This is at no extra cost to you and helps us maintain this resource for all webmasters’ benefit. We own and pay for all the hosting accounts we use in our reviews and performance testing. Read our full disclosure statement here. Thanks for your support.

15 reviews on “Dreamhost Reviews

  1. Neala says:

    I’ve been with Dreamhost for about 15 years. I don’t know how their price stacks up compared to other hosting companies but I do know and appreciate their quick and professional customer support. For example, yesterday I totally broke one of my three websites. I sent a frantic email and before I could work up my anxiety level my site was fixed and back up, with an explanation of what happened and why.

  2. Connor says:

    I’ve been using DreamHost to host many of my websites for over 10 years now, and the main reasons I’ve stayed with them for so long are their exceptional and reliable services, their excellent support, and their entry hosting plans which are set at a VERY convenient price. Within the past 10-15 years of using DreamHost, I can only recall 1 or 2 occasions in which I had problems with the server’s reliability. Even during these couple of occasions, most of my websites were still up, and it was only a partial outage. Furthermore, the problems were always resolved immediately once brought to their attention (and many times they were fixed before I even have to contact them).

    Their support staff is EXCEPTIONAL: they are NOT overseas employees reading from transcripts, instead they are all ACTUAL programmers in the USA that are all VERY competent and 95% of the time they have been able to resolve my problems themselves immediately. The other 5% of the time, they simply asked for assistance from another individual and then the problem was solved.

    Furthermore, they have a VERY enticing affiliate rewards program. Finally, they have a tremendous amount of what they call “One-Click Install” apps (including WordPress and many other CMS’s, other apps, etc). While it does take more than one click, these applications can be installed within minutes by simply pressing a few buttons and absolutely NO knowledge of coding is required by the user. All you must do is select the app from the control panel, enter a few lines of data (site name, etc) and click install. That’s it. It’s absolutely wonderful. They even have the ability to update WordPress from within your control panel, and they give a great number of useful plugins automatically installed as well.

    If you are a new or veteran webmaster looking for a reilable host offering shared and dedicated hosting options (among many others), I would HIGHLY recommend you give DreamHost a try. They truly are exemplary.

  3. Francesca says:

    I had pretty beginner problems with my site, but the dreamhost people were polite and eager to help. Offered to do stuff for me if I couldn’t figure it out myself. They were attentive but not badgering. When it took more than 24 hours to get back to me, they sent an automated email to apologize for the delay and that they were working on it. Their site is relatively easy to understand and navigate.

  4. Ethan says:

    Works very well for my purposes. On the few occasions when some issue pops up, I check DreamHost support and they’re already working on fixing the issue, and they give updates throughout the process. They fairly regularly add new features, most recently a new mail interface, which looks great. Setup was about as straight forward as you could expect, and they have a wiki for troubleshooting which I use from time to time. Pretty happy with it overall!

  5. I’ve known and been impressed with the Dreamhost team for a long time. They combine passion with knowledge and fun!

    Recently, I was able to try out their virtual compute offering. The OpenStack Compute offering worked really well! It used the standard OpenStack APIs and their UI has the right features to let me work with the system too,

    Thank you.

  6. Justice says:

    DreamHost is classified as the Best Web hosting services because for real, they’re doing great.
    1. Their Customer Service is the most efficient and reliable one.
    2. Good hosting. They’re also the cheapest best i’ve come across.
    There may be other cheap hosting services out there, but DreamHost is one outstanding from the heap.
    3. DreamHost Cares for us just as our mums did.
    4 I experience no downtimes at all.

  7. Tim Jensen says:

    As a developer I have dealt with many different hosts. A lot of times you have to sacrifice technical support in order to get affordable hosting… Then there’s DreamHost! DreamHost offers the best combination of support, features, and value of any host that I’ve encountered. I now host all my sites with DreamHost and recommend them 100%.

  8. Daniel rubio says:

    I’ve only been using dreamhost for a year but I’ve loved it so far. They have been so helpful when I needed it. Their service is easy to use. I mean my wife was able to figure something out while I was away. And she isn’t super web savvy. They also had a great deal for students when I was signing up which helped a ton because I am close to graduating and needed a portfolio site.

  9. Trevor Kincy says:

    Absolutely phenomenal customer service. A personalized email was written to me the day we open our account, they took interest in our site and actually pointed out a bug we weren’t aware of. They’re completely unscripted, and they have a sense of humor, which has been an excellent departure from what we’re used to. We’re currently working on expanding our infrastructure to support new features in our website and have outgrown what backend options are available with our current host. DreamHost has been an instrumental part of that, not only while we’re transitioning our website to DreamHost servers, but also they offer a scalable infrastructure. Signing up was a seamless experience, and their GUI is very user friendly. Having worked with about 4 other hosts prior to DreamHost, I can say by far and away this has easily been the best experience for both myself and my organization.

  10. Marissa says:

    We have had hosting through Dreamhost for several years now. In that time, the Dreamhost support team has proved invaluable in solving any issues we had. From small system hiccups to a full site hack, the team has been helpful, friendly and supportive, even when the problems we were facing had nothing at all to do with hosting. I fully recommend Dreamhost for their reliability and friendly service.

  11. Bruce Clark says:

    DH has been my host for years now and, for the majority of the time, everything has worked perfectly. There was a slight hiccup with the distribution lists on a specific server at the beginning of 2015 (which was sorted out as quickly as possible) but, other than that, it’s been plain sailing.

    Recently I found myself in a position of needing to do more than ‘point and click’. I had to SSH into the machine and move the furniture a bit. Commands that I used to know had long ago slipped out of my memory so I contacted DH Support for a bit of help.

    Within minutes I had a bit of a ‘refresher’ and was able to do what I needed to do. Thanks, Dreamhost. Great, friendly, helpful support.

  12. Ash Nathens says:

    I’ve been a customer since July 2006, and currently host 20+ websites for clients & my own illustration business.

    Over the years, I have had varied reasons to contact tech support. Whether the issues have been on their end or mine, they have been unfailingly professional & clear with their support; OFTEN going above and beyond where they do not necessarily need to provide further support.

    Their live support is incredibly efficient & has assisted in countless instances where timeliness is critical. In short, their support has been faultless, without fail. I cannot speak highly enough of the support I have experienced over the years, and this would be reason enough for me to write a review of their services.

    I have personally experienced negligible downtime, with very few isolated instances across all sites over the last 10 years. None have been long enough to impact any business, and all were communicated clearly and in a timely manner.

    They are hard to match on price, and offer a full suite of services as standard that most hosts do not match. I have not had a single dissatisfied customer when churned from their original host.

    I’d highly recommend DreamHost for all levels of webmasters, be they multi-domain managers, or the small business looking for an affordable self-managed solution.

  13. Jeiman Jeya says:

    Support is a key aspect when it comes to using a great service. They need to have lower wait time for support staffs to answer your questions and rectify issues quickly. To me, you need to have a prestigeous 24/7 support system that includes live chat and DreamHost succeeds tremendeously well in this area. Literally, I submitted an email to the support team asking various questions on the services they provide and they responded back within 3 hours. In most cases, other companies will respond within or after 24 hours (usually after 5-6 hours).

    They were extremely patient and pleasant with me and all of my random questions I asked.

    In terms of billing and package selection, they have a great scheme for this. They provide a standard monthly billing, annual billing and a 2 year billing. On top of that, their Labor Day sale was a huge bonus for me as I was able to grab it at a discounted rate of 64% for a year. Honestly, who can beat that?

    So far, I haven’t experienced any downtime with the hosting account. The Control Panel is user-friendly and easy to navigate around. Features, benefits and perks that are affordable and much better compared to other hosting companies.

    In my opinion, they surpass premium services such as Media Temple, Siteground, Bluehost and many more. So, if you’re looking for a great hosting service with prestigeous support system and affordable price, looking no further than DreamHost. I guarantee you, you won’t be upset.

  14. As a customer of Dreamhost for almost eight years now, Dreamhost has always shown excellence in showing the importance of keeping their customer’s happy. Dreamhost has the best customer support I’ve seen of any web host, with many options including live, email, and Twitter support, with fast response times. Dreamhost’s team is very friendly and easy to work with for all individuals regardless of prior knowledge and would highly recommend them.

  15. Stephani says:

    I’d recommend DreamHost to anyone, but especially anyone like myself whose skill set doesn’t include website admin or anything tech related. They’re very quick to respond to inquiries, they give simple explanations that I can understand without making me feel like an idiot, often fix or improve whatever I was asking about to save me the hassle of doing it myself, plus everyone I’ve dealt with is friendly and has a sense of humour so they’re always great to deal with. I’ve been with other hosts over the years but these guys are by far the best, couldn’t be happier.

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