DreamHost Review

DreamHost Review

Overall:

DreamHost is one of the best hosting providers out there. Highly accessible with drag-and-drop options, Managed WordPress hosting available, and an intuitive c-Panel as well as dedicated servers for larger, high-traffic sites. 

From $10.99/ month

Whether you’re launching a personal blog or developing a complex, high-traffic e-commerce site, DreamHost is a worthy contender as a web host. DreamHost has built a robust, scalable hosting infrastructure that can accommodate a wide variety of needs.

DreamHost is an accessible hosting company, offering options for website newbies and seasoned developers alike. From basic Shared Hosting Plans to highly customizable Dedicated Servers, DreamHost bakes in features such as an intuitive custom control panel, one-click WordPress Install, free SSL certification, and an award winning tech-support team that is available 24/7.

DreamHost Plans and Pricing

Shared Hosting

Ideal for personal websites, blogs, and portfolio sites, DreamHost’s Shared Hosting option has a lot of value baked into a low monthly fee of $10.95.* DreamHost Shared Hosting sites are hosted on SSD servers and optimized for speed.

All shared hosting plans include:

  • A free domain for your first year (including options for .com, .net, .org)
  • 100% Uptime guarantee
  • 24/7 Tech Support (available through e-mail and Twitter)
  • Unlimited domain hosting
  • Free privacy protection
  • Free SSL/TLS certificates with Let’s Encrypt, which can be activated easily through the DreamHost control panel.
  • Full Unix Shell
  • Crontab Access
  • Full CGI access
  • Unlimited MySQL databases
  • DreamHost Control Panel
  • Rails, Python, & Perl support
  • Canned CGI scripts
  • SSI (Server Side Includes)
  • IPv6 support
  • PHP5 support
  • Raw Log file access
  • Subversion Repository (SVN)
  • One-click install for WordPress, Joomla, ZenCart and other popular apps

DreamHost-Installer

DreamHost offers a 97-day money back guarantee on Shared Plans, making a trial virtually risk-free. If you decide it isn’t the best fit, you can cancel within 97 days for a full refund.

*1-year plans are available for a one-time payment of $119.40, making the monthly cost $9.95. 3-year plans offer the best overall value, $7.95/month, but the initial payment of $286.20 might be steep for some users.

Managed WordPress Hosting

WordPress is an incredibly popular platform, and DreamHost offers a hosting plan designed especially for WordPress users who want to focus on producing content and building their business. WordPress can be easily installed and utilized through the basic shared hosting plans, but for a few dollars more per month (starting at $16.95), users can take advantage of DreamHost’s Managed WordPress hosting.

DreamHost has configured its Managed WordPress Hosting specifically for WordPress, which guarantees optimum performance. Technicians will take care of installing WordPress, managing updates, and automating backups for you. You can rest assured that your content is safe and focus on your project without having to worry about site maintenance.  

DreamHost-Domain-Registration

In addition to being 5 x faster than basic shared hosting, DreamHost’s managed WordPress plan includes:

  • Two High-Performance VPS Servers (one for front-end and one for MySQL)
  • 30GB SSD storage, making your site very fast
  • Dynamic memory
  • Fast caching
  • PHP7 configuration for optimum speed, with backwards compatibility for third-party plugins
  • NetNGINX, HTTP/2, and a Let's Encrypt TLS/SSL certificate
  • SSH, WP-Cli, and Git support
DreamHost-Jetpack

On top of that, the DreamPress plan includes Jetpack Premium (normally $99/year). With Jetpack Premium, you get:

  • Automated daily backups with unlimited offsite storage.  
  • Daily Malware scans
  • Spam protection in comments and pingbacks
  • Protection from brute-force attacks
  • Uptime Monitoring

Virtual Private Server (VPS)

Sometimes shared hosting isn’t quite enough. For developers, businesses, e-commerce boutiques, and others who need a little more oomph, DreamHost offers VPS plans starting at $15/month.

VPS plans offer scalable RAM and hard-drive space, allowing you to grow your site over time and easily add more resources as you need them. You can instantly upgrade your site from 1GB of RAM to 8GB through the control panel. High performance SSD hard drives are also scalable, ranging from 30GB to 240GB.

Additional VPS plan features include:

  • Unlimited 24/7 tech-support via live chat, Twitter, and email.
  • Ubuntu 12.04 Long-Term Support (five years of security updates)
  • Unlimited domains.

Dedicated Servers

DreamHost has been around for over a decade, and in that time they have developed a custom Control Panel that gives you complete control over all of your domains, e-mail addresses, and websites. Ideal for large e-commerce sites, high-traffic sites, live-streaming services, and reseller hosting, DreamHost’s dedicated servers are powerful and secure, monitored 24/7 by a professional tech support team. With full root & SSH access, you can easily add and remove servers, reboot, powercycle, and much more. With dedicated servers, you have complete control over your resources- and there are a lot of resources!

All servers come with unlimited bandwidth, 100% guaranteed uptime, 4-hour SLA, and one dedicated IP address.

Pricing for a dedicated server begins at $149/month. In addition to the features covered above, all servers include:

  • Unlimited MySQL Databases
  • 1-click WordPress Installation
  • DDoS protection
  • PHP/Perl/Python/Ruby Support
  • Ubuntu Linux
  • RAID 1 Storage

You also have the option to customize your server configurations for additional power and flexibility. Choose from:

  • Cores : 4 or 12 cores
  • Storage: HDD or SSD storage, max 2TB
  • RAM: 4, 8, 16, 32, or 64 GB of RAM.

When you have a site of this size, scalability is important, and DreamHost makes it easy to add resources as your site grows. DreamHost has Dedicated Server specialists available to assist clients interested in pursuing this hosting option.

DreamHost Speed and Performance

DreamHost advertises uptime, bandwidth, and storage variously as “Unlimited” throughout descriptions of their different hosting plans…  However, if we look at their official “Unlimited Policy” we can see that there are actually some limits to “unlimited.” The main takeaways from this are:

 

  • Sites on shared hosting plans that are deemed to be hogging or misusing resources, such as RAM or CPU, may be asked to upgrade to a dedicated server.

 

  • When they say “unlimited databases,” what that means is that you are allowed an unlimited number of MySQL Databases, but they would like you to keep them “optimized and no more than a few GB in size.”

 

  • As of November 2014, the “Unlimited Policy” no longer applies to new VPS or DreamPress plans. The disk allotment for these plans is specified individually.

 

That being said, DreamHost does offer competitive speed and performance. Within reason, so long as users comply with the terms of service, there are no limits on traffic or bandwidth. In the case of uptime, the 100% unlimited guarantee does really mean unlimited, and DreamHost will compensate users a full day of service for every hour of downtime.

DreamHost Interface

Every tier of hosting services provided by DreamHost offers a customized control panel that is highly intuitive and easy to use. Plus, it even works on mobile!

DreamHost-Interface-mobile

One-click install is available for WordPress and other popular apps and platforms, including Joomla and Zencart.

DreamHost-Apps

Website Builder

For users with minimal experience and/or anyone who wants to get a website up and running quickly, DreamHost also provides a really simple website builder tool called Remixer.

DreamHost-Website-Builder

You can try DreamHost's Remixer for free and design your site by customizing any number of fully responsive themes with a drag and drop interface.

Remixer features include:

  • Easily change fonts and colors
  • Upload your own media
  • Add images from a library of royalty free photos
  • Drag and drop to reorganize sections of the site
  • Secure, static pages
  • Thorough documentation
  • 24/7 tech support
  • Once you sign up for a hosting plan, you can launch your site with the click of a button
DreamHost-Royalty-Free-Images

DreamHost Security

The ability to install free SSL is a major advantage to DreamHost over a lot of other webhosts. Because search engines are increasingly weighing SSL as a factor in ranking, the ability to add this feature for free is not only a way to make your site more secure, but a boost to SEO as well.

In addition to SSL, even the most basic shared hosting plans include privacy protection. Automatic backups are provided through Managed WordPress Hosting, and backup settings are customizable through the VPS and Dedicated Server plans.

Customer support

DreamHost is particularly noted for its award winning, 24/7 in-house customer support team. Unlike a lot of hosting providers, DreamHost does not outsource their customer support, so you can expect expert service. Extended documentation is provided for troubleshooting common issues, and if you get stuck you can contact tech support directly through your DreamHost control panel.

DreamHost-Customer-Support

When you need help, you have the option to submit a support ticket via e-mail, request a callback, or use the live chat feature to chat in real-time with an agent. The live chat feature is available from 5AM – 10PM PST, every day of the week. At peak times, there is a chance you will have to wait a while to get help. If it isn’t urgent, requesting a callback or submitting a support ticket might be a better option.

DreamHost Review Conclusion

Overall, DreamHost is a very solid choice. There is a reason why DreamHost won the 2016 PCMag Business Choice Award for Web Hosingand actually they also won for the previous 2 years, as well. A lot of features are baked into every level of DreamHost’s affordable and scalable hosting options.

For website newbies, DreamHost offers a uniquely intuitive infrastructure that is designed to be easy to use, plus options like the Remixer site-builder and Managed WordPress hosting to really make things super simple. With VPS and Dedicated Servers, you can fine-tune your plan to use only the resources that you need and add more your site grows.

Pros

  • Plenty of packages to choose from 
  • Dedicated servers available
  • Reasonable price
  • Great support
  • 100% uptime guarantee!

Cons

  • None

Overall Score:

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