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DreamHost Web Hosting Review 2024

Updated on May 22, 2024 – Written By: Shant Alexanian

DreamHost is recognized as a prominent web hosting service due to its extensive range of cost-effective hosting plans. They offer five different hosting options, ranging from shared website hosting to cloud hosting. Many users also commend its streamlined one-click WordPress installations, simplifying the process of launching a website within minutes.

But is DreamHost the suitable provider for your hosting requirements? Let’s delve into the full range of services offered in this comprehensive DreamHost review.

⭐ Ratings:
4/5
💰 Price: Prices start from $2.59/mo.
➡️ Uptime: 100%
🏠Hosting types: Shared, managed WordPress, VPS, cloud, and dedicated server
🌎 Data centers: The US
👨‍💼 Support: Live chat (5:30 AM - 9:30 PM PT), phone support, and 24/7 email tickets

Pros and Cons of DreamHost

Pros

  • Easy website setup process
  • Unlimited data transfers per month
  • Affordable and feature-rich plans
  • Generously shared hosting
  • Free domain, SSL, domain privacy, and daily backups
  • Good performance testing results
  • Strong security features
  • Useful WordPress staging feature
  • Extensive domain-management tools
  • Excellent cloud hosting offerings
  • 97-day money-back guarantee

Cons

  • No email with the Shared Starter plan
  • Lacks Windows-based servers
  • No phone support
  • Live chat is not 24/7
  • The malware removal tool is a paid tool

Table of Contents

DreamHost Plans and Pricing

DreamHost’s pricing is reasonable, to say the least. Shared hosting plans start at only $2.59 per month. However, if your requirements exceed the basics, their managed WordPress, VPS (Virtual Private Server), and dedicated servers are all good options for larger websites.

Hosting type Best for:

Shared web hosting is best for budget-conscious small businesses and individuals. If you’re on a tight budget at $2.59/month, shared web hosting is a great way to get started.

DreamPress hosting is a managed WordPress platform that provides dedicated server resources. It’s the perfect solution for high-traffic WordPress sites.

VPS hosting is best for those who need a reliable, scalable, and affordable solution. If you’re looking for a hosting option that can grow with your website, VPS is a great choice. Plus, VPS servers are usually more affordable than dedicated servers.

Cloud hosting is a great option for businesses that want to improve their scalability and flexibility. Hosting on the cloud can help businesses save money on infrastructure costs, and it can also make it easier to manage and maintain their website or application.

Dedicated hosting is for those who need the most reliable, high-powered hosting option. It’s perfect for businesses that are growing quickly and need to be able to handle increased traffic. Dedicated hosting gives you your own server, so you don’t have to share resources with other websites. This results in faster load times and fewer disruptions.

DreamHost offers a variety of hosting plans to suit the needs of any customer, from shared hosting to more robust options. But for most websites, shared hosting is the way to go—it’s more affordable and provides everything you need. So, if you’re looking for a website host that won’t break the bank, DreamHost is a great option.

DreamHost is excellent because they make choosing a hosting plan simple- there are only two options. Also, both plans come with awesome freebies like domain registration, privacy protection for your domain, SSL certification, content delivery network access, unmetered bandwidth usage, and daily backups.

Let’s take a look at the plans, features, and prices:

Shared Starter- is good If you need a single website that won’t require extensive storage, Shared Starter is the perfect solution. You can host a personal website or blog, post a portfolio, or promote your company’s services all for only $2.59/mo.

Shared Unlimited Plan- DreamHost provides an excellent service for those seeking to have multiple websites, who need unlimited email hosting, or who require a lot of data storage space. This $3.95 per month plan is perfect for either individual use or small businesses–particularly those intending to run an online store.

Shared hosting starting at only $2.59 per month? Don’t miss out on this fantastic deal! The Unlimited plan is especially great because you won’t find similar features at that price with any other provider.

The great thing about Starter is that it’s an excellent choice for creating a personal website. The only downside, however, is having to pay for an email account- which will make you look more professional online. Please note that the prices shown are for the 36-month billing cycle.

Best Deal

The best deal—if you can commit to three years upfront—is the Shared Starter plan at $2.59/month. If that’s not in your budget, don’t worry! The yearly plan is still a great value at $2.95/month with a 12-month upfront payment.

Just a heads up! DreamHost’s billing cycles for different purchases renew at various monthly rates, so be sure to check before making any final decisions. That way, you won’t have any unwanted surprises in the future!

But wait, that’s not all–there’s more.

Some first-time DreamHost users may not be aware of everything they should know when using the site. While DreamHost is a great service, it’s important to be aware of the limitations and exceptions listed in the terms of service. By understanding these, you can make the most of your DreamHost experience!

When deciding on a hosting provider, it is important to be aware of the features and standards that they implement. The following list details some things you should know before signing up with DreamHost:

  • Domain name registration is not always free. In most cases, a free domain name registration is only valid for a year. After that, you may need to renew your registration or switch to a different provider.
  • Some companies tend to sneak in extra charges by automatically adding services to your shopping cart, so be sure to uncheck the boxes for any extras you don’t want.
  • DreamHost will only issue refunds to customers who pay with a credit card and request it within 97 days of buying shared web hosting. Other services, like domain registration, SSL certification, and AdWords campaigns are not refundable.

Unlimited bandwidth and disk space

The Shared Starter plan from DreamHost provides you with unlimited bandwidth, and the Shared Unlimited plan provides both unlimited disk space and bandwidth. Doesn’t that sound amazing? In practice, you can host way more websites than you think, and they can be much larger too. Also, thousands of people can scroll through these sites smoothly every day.

Unlimited web hosting services are not unlimited because of physical server limitations. Just like any other device, a server can only handle so much storage, bandwidth, and RAM. And remember that many people share the same server when they have a shared hosting plan–so those restricted resources get spread thin among users.

However, before you rule out DreamHost, understand that although the resources aren’t infinite, you do receive more than what you would with a provider that has set limits for storage or bandwidth. The Unlimited plan is perfect for hosting a small online store without any issues.

To be frank, DreamHost’s prices are reasonable. You can get a great deal on a decent plan, and the more you’re willing to spend, the better the value gets. In general, DreamHost gives you more than its competitors for either a comparable or lower price.

DreamHost Performance and Uptime

DreamHost offers unbeatable affordability and an unparalleled 100% uptime guarantee that is simply unheard of in the industry. DreamHost’s swift performance is unparalleled; pages load almost instantaneously, regardless of their size. We tested this host’s abilities by putting it through a rigorous performance evaluation.

To start with, we ran a test to measure the host’s uptime using Uptime Robot:

To ensure optimal performance, we monitored DreamHost for over 70 hours. During this period, DreamHost astounded us with its impeccable uptime of 100%, as seen in the screenshot presented below. During this period, there was no reported downtime.

In terms of Response Time, DreamHost was unparalleled, they achieved an awe-inspiring speed of 216ms. Our test graph reveals that for a short period around 10:30 pm, the response rate sharply rose to a slow speed of 1.6 seconds – still not bad.

Ultimately, DreamHost is a highly reliable hosting company that provides Great uptime and rapid response times.

DreamHost website speed test

For this section of our DreamHost review, to assess performance, we conducted a speed test to measure the loading time of both an empty and fully built website. To assess the effectiveness of this test, we utilized GTmetrix a metrics tool.

To ensure you comprehend the outcomes, here are 3 critical metrics:

  • The Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) – is how long it takes to load the biggest piece of content on a page.
  • Fully Loaded Time – is a metric that captures the point in time after Onload and First Contentful Paint has been triggered, along with 5.25 seconds of network and CPU idle activity.
  • Speed Index – is a metric that measures how quickly the visible components of your page are displayed on average.

To start with, we tested the loading speed of a blank WordPress website from various points around the globe. The hosting plan we chose for the test was the Shared Starter plan. Unquestionably, the highest and most impressive outcomes occurred on our US-hosted site with a good LCP score of only 454ms.

Sadly, DreamHost’s Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) results in the UK and India weren’t as great as we had hoped for; resulting in 715ms for the UK and 1.5 seconds for India. Remarkably, all three of the servers were still able to load under Google’s set two-second threshold for eCommerce websites – still an impressive achievement.

As the screenshot below illustrates, DreamHost had a remarkable performance when tested on an empty site from a server located in San Antonio, TX, USA.

Much to our amazement, the results of testing on a U.S. server were astoundingly better than anticipated – 510ms fully loaded time? That’s half a second now that’s fast.

Now, what would happen if we switched the empty site to a fully-built one?

After building the site, our LCP increased to 1.3 seconds – still an extraordinary speed! Astonishingly, in only 1.3 seconds, our WordPress website was fully loaded with six images on the homepage – check out the screenshot below.

The Fully Loaded Time for the website was an impressive 1.5s, handily surpassing the suggested maximum load time of 3 seconds. This lightning-fast speed will keep customers engaged and coming back to your site again and again.

The screenshot below displays further detailed analytics regarding the fully built website.

As shown in the screenshot above, DreamHost achieved an extraordinary speed index time of 1.1 seconds – that’s not bad. This impressive performance proves that even with a fully-built website, you can still achieve outstanding results.

To ensure that your website’s page loading speeds remain optimal, choose a server located close to the region of your target audience. DreamHost has established two data centers in the USA: one in Ashburn, Virginia, and the other in Hillsboro, Oregon.

To sum it up, DreamHost is exceptionally quick; it certainly outperformed the performance benchmark in its LCP, Fully Loaded Time, and Speed Index Time.

Security: How Secure is DreamHost?

DreamHost provides a good range of security features, from the basics like SSL certificates and firewalls to more advanced features like daily backups and domain privacy. This makes it a good choice for small businesses and individual users who want to be sure their website is protected from attacks.

  • A Let’s Encrypt SSL certificate is a must-have for any website. They create a secure connection between browsers and servers, ensuring that all data passed between them is encrypted and safeguarded. Let’s Encrypt certificates are free, making them an even more appealing option for website owners.
  • A web Application Firewall (WAF) is a security system that is used to protect websites from malicious attacks and unauthorized access. A WAF typically works by filtering the traffic that comes to a website, and it can include a large number of custom rules that help to keep the site safe. This way, you have some basic protection from attacks on your site as well as bots.
  • DreamHost offers domain privacy protection for free, which is a paid feature provided by other companies. This service conceals your personal information linked to the domain so that it is not publicly visible. With this service, you will be safeguarded against spam and other online dangers.
  • DreamHost’s automated backup feature is a great way to ensure your website is always safe and secure. The backups are created every day, even on the lower-priced plan, giving you peace of mind that your data is being backed up. Additionally, if you need to do a manual backup for any reason, you can easily do so once a day. DreamHost stores all backups securely for up to two weeks, so you can always restore your website if something goes wrong.

These security measures are good. One crucial feature does require a subscription, however.

To help safeguard your website, DreamHost has created an innovative malware removal tool called DreamShield Malware Remover. You can subscribe to it for $29.99 per year or pay $3 each month. Even though having to pay is its only downfall, it’s always good practice to be prepared against something as prevalent as malware.

Instead of buying DreamShield, we used 3rd party tools to cover any security holes. While DreamShield is a great product, it can be expensive for smaller businesses. By using other tools, we were able to get the same level of security at a fraction of the cost.

Overall, DreamHost takes security matters very seriously; many other hosting providers charge for advanced features, but DreamHost offers them to you free of charge. Paid malware protection can be replaced by cheaper 3rd party alternatives; DreamHost has made a name for itself as one of the most reliable secure hosting providers on our list.

Hosting Management – Is DreamHost Control Panel Easy To Use?

DreamHost is a simple-to-use platform, its primary focus is WordPress hosting. Although other applications can be hosted, WP users gain the most advantage. To start with an easy yet a little slow WordPress installation, equipped with two robust builders and a unique control panel built for intuitive navigation, It’s a powerhouse for delivering an exceptional user experience.

Once you sign up, you’ll see this screen below:

From there, you have full control over your databases, emails, billing information, and websites. Plus, with just a single click of the mouse, you can access the WordPress editor.

Overall, DreamHost offers an extremely user-friendly control panel. Navigating through different pages and making platform modifications is a hassle-free task for all users. The expansive menu and categories make it effortless to access the information you need. Even with the numerous options on the control panel, it remains easy to navigate through them without feeling overwhelmed or confused. DreamHost gives you the capability to make your desired changes a breeze.

How To Install WordPress With DreamHost?

Dreamhost takes the hassle out of installing WordPress. With just a few clicks, you can have everything set up and ready to go.

Step 1: Log into your Dreamhost account.

Step 2: Now click on the (Install WordPress Now) button, as seen in the screenshot below.

Step 3: Open WordPress Editor

It’s that easy installing WordPress, and all the key login details will be sent to the email account you signed up with. When your website is ready to go, you can log in to your account by navigating to www.example.com/wp-admin or logging in through your hosting account both methods are viable options.

All things considered, setting up WordPress with DreamHost is an effortless process as highlighted in the steps above.

DreamHost WordPress Migration

A website migration is a change to your website that impacts its structure, performance, location, and more. In this case, we’re specifically focusing on WordPress migration.

DreamHost has 2 options to offer for site migration. You can either migrate your WordPress site manually or contact DreamHost’s team to do the job for you. Select whatever option you prefer — it’ll make the website transfer process much simpler, whether you’re relocating from one domain to another or transferring between hosting providers.

Before you jump to make a decision, let’s explore the 2 options in more detail:

  • Manual migration. This is done with a DreamHost Automated Migration plugin free of charge. Securely and quickly migrate your WordPress site to DreamHost by downloading the free Automated Migration plugin. After that, simply follow the simple step-by-step instructions for a smooth transition. While this process is entirely your responsibility, you are still free to contact DreamHost’s customer support to ask for advice.
  • Automated migration. Unlike the manual one, automated migration will cost you $99 to migrate your site to any DreamHost’s shared hosting plan.

Nevertheless, manual migration can only be used on WordPress websites. On the other hand, automated migration provides an opportunity to migrate any CMS of your preference. Unfortunately, sites built and hosted on Weebly, Squarespace, or Wix cannot be moved to DreamHost.

While automated migration does cost money, there is one loophole – DreamPress. If you wish to migrate your WordPress website to one of the DreamPress (managed WordPress) plans, you are eligible for single free site migration.

How to Add an SSL Certificate With DreamHost?

The first step is to confirm your Domain Name Server (DNS) settings. To do this, visit your DreamHost Panel. To find the website you want to secure the domain for, go to Manage Websites and locate the site that you want to secure.

The next step is to click on the three vertical dots. Once the dropdown menu appears, find and select DNS Settings from among the options.

After clicking, the DNS settings tab scroll down to the bottom of the page and look for the list of DNS records to view your nameservers.

  • ns1.dreamhost.com
  • ns2.dreamhost.com
  • ns3.dreamhost.com

DreamHost will handle your domain’s DNS records as long as the nameservers are pointed to DreamHost.

Inspect the “DreamHost DNS records” to ensure your nameservers are pointed to DreamHost. Let’s Encrypt will not be an option if your domain name and server aren’t set up correctly.

Step 1: After you’ve confirmed that your nameservers are aligned, you can adjust the SSL settings in your user panel. You can find this by clicking on Websites > Secure Certificate Settings in your user panel.

Step 2: Click on (Settings) on the right side of your screen as seen in the screenshot below.

Step 3: Click on the (Add New Certificate) tab see below for the location.

Step 4: Right now, opt for (Select this Certificate) under the Let’s Encrypt option it’s FREE.

At this point, your SSL certificate should be fully installed. You should see a box saying your domain has been added to our hosting system.

To test if your newly installed security certificate is working, just go to your website’s URL in any internet browser. If you see a padlock icon and the address starts with “HTTPS,” then congratulations—your site is now secure!

Overall, the SSL certificate is a breeze to install with DreamHost. You can quickly and easily add an SSL certificate to your site to keep your information safe and secure.

Is DreamHost Support Helpful When Needed?

DreamHost offers various ways to contact customer support so you can always get the help you need. DreamHost technical support is available at all hours of the day, every day of the year. However, if you wish to speak to someone through Live Chat, they are only available during Pacific Time from (5:30 AM – 9:30 PM) on weekdays. You can also read articles on DreamHost’s extensive knowledge base database.

DreamHost always encourages customers to first find an answer in the knowledge base, rather than contacting one of DreamHost’s support agents. DreamHost’s support team is available 24/7 to help you with any questions or concerns, but DreamHost highly recommends checking its extensive database of solutions before reaching out.

DreamHost’s support request form allows you to choose between submitting a ticket or chatting with an agent. The chat feature was unavailable when we tried to contact DreamHost, as it was outside of their business hours, but the ticket submission process worked smoothly. We recommend using the ticket submission system if you need to reach customer support outside of business hours; it is more likely to be available.

DreamHost’s ticketing system is available 24/7 to help you resolve any issues you might have. Though live chat may not always be an option, the ticket system is a great way to get help when you need it most.

A big downside is that phone support costs money. For a single phone call, it costs $9.95. If you need help more frequently, you can choose the 3 monthly calls plan at just $14.95 per month! To be frank, we think this is quite expensive.

Overall, DreamHost has generally good customer support, with a few caveats. The company offers multiple support channels, including ticket support, live chat, and phone support. Of these, we found ticket support to be the most efficient and responsive. Unfortunately, live chat is not available 24/7, and phone support comes at an additional cost. However, DreamHost provides decent customer support, though there are a few areas that could use some improvements.

DreamHost: Would We Recommend Them?

There are many web hosting services available, but we recommend using DreamHost. We found that it is a great and reliable service for WordPress users. It has more pros than cons, based on our research.

Pricing is more than reasonable, especially when you take into account that DreamHost’s shared hosting plans provide plenty of resources for both a blog and a complex business website. You can get started for as little as $2.59/month.

Ease of Use DreamHost’s custom-built control panel UX could be improved. Although it’s still functional and easy to use, the setup process is a breeze.

DreamHost is a reliable, fast, and powerful web hosting company that provides more features than you would expect from a company offering low-cost web hosting plans.

The support field is the only one that needs improvement. Although ticket support is available 24/7, live chat is only available during DreamHost’s business hours; the phone option requires payment. Thankfully, ticket support agents are quick and helpful. They respond to inquiries promptly and provide clear answers that help resolve the issue at hand.

Security DreamHost provides multiple levels of security in all their packages, from basics to more advanced tools. In addition to domain privacy protection and a custom web application firewall, you’ll also receive free SSL certification and daily backups.

DreamHost Hosting Review: The Final Verdict

So, if you are looking for a reliable web host with great features and affordability, we recommend DreamHost. They have been in business since 1997 and offer a variety of services, including domain registration, web hosting, and eCommerce solutions. Whether you are starting a personal blog or need a professional website for your business, DreamHost has the tools you need to get started online.

Alternatives to DreamHost

DreamHost is a powerful competitor in the web hosting market. Although this may not be the right choice for your business, if you’re unsure where to host your website, don’t worry! There are plenty of great hosting providers out there. Learn more about a few of them below.

Hostinger

Hostinger plans are significantly cheaper than the average, with their cheapest plan running at less than $95.50 for 48 months. It has an easy-to-use control panel, 24/7 customer support that is always happy to help, and servers in 7 different countries.

A2 Hosting

A2 Hosting is another hosting provider that strikes a balance between performance and affordability. For only $2.99/mo., the provider gives you access to plenty of server resources, 24/7 customer service that is always willing to help.

FAQs About DreamHost Web Hosting Review

Is DreamHost good?

DreamHost is good. They offer a variety of services that can be tailored to fit the needs of any customer, and they have a good reputation for providing reliable service. Their customer support is responsive and knowledgeable, and they offer a 97-day money-back guarantee if you’re not satisfied with their service.

They also provide a free domain name when you sign up for an account with them, which is a nice perk. Overall, DreamHost is a good choice for anyone looking for web hosting services.

Is DreamHost safe?

With over two decades in the business, DreamHost is one of the most experienced web hosting companies around. They offer a variety of services, including shared hosting, WordPress hosting, VPS hosting, and more. And because they’re a large company with a strong reputation, you can be sure that your website will be safe and secure with them.

In addition, DreamHost offers several security features to further protect your website. For example, they have an intrusion detection system that monitors for potential threats, and they offer free SSL certificates to encrypt your data. So if you’re looking for a safe and secure web host, DreamHost is a great option.

What Products Does DreamHost Offer

DreamHost is a web hosting company that offers a variety of products to its customers. One of the most popular products is shared hosting, which allows customers to share a server with other websites. This can be a great option for small businesses or personal websites that don’t need a lot of resources. DreamHost also offers VPS hosting, which gives customers their own virtual server. This can be a good option for businesses that need more control over their server or for websites that are starting to get more traffic.

Finally, DreamHost also offers dedicated hosting, which gives customers their own physical server. This is the most expensive option but it can be worth it for businesses that need a lot of power and flexibility. Whatever your needs, DreamHost likely has a product that will fit them.

Is DreamHost good for beginners?

If you’re just starting with your first website, DreamHost is a great option. They offer a wide range of features to help you get started, including a free domain name and free email accounts. You also get a free SSL certificate with every account, which is important for making sure your website is secure.

And if you ever have any questions, their 24/7 customer support team is always available to help. So whether you’re just getting started or you’re an experienced webmaster, DreamHost has everything you need to create a successful website.

Is WordPress free with DreamHost?

WordPress is a content management system (CMS) that powers millions of websites around the world. It is known for its ease of use, flexibility, and scalability. WordPress is free to download and use; however, you will need to purchase a domain name and web hosting to run a WordPress website.

DreamHost offers a WordPress-specific web hosting plan that includes a free domain name, one-click WordPress installation, and 24/7 expert support. So, if you are looking to create a WordPress website, DreamHost is a great option. However, if you already have a website on another platform, you can also transfer your site to DreamHost. They offer free migration services to make the transition as smooth as possible. In short, yes, WordPress is free with DreamHost.

Where are DreamHost servers located?

DreamHost currently has 2 data centers. One is located in Ashburn, Virginia, and the other is located in Hillsboro, Oregon. The data center in Ashburn, Virginia is situated just outside of Washington DC. It provides excellent connectivity to the East Coast of the United States. The data center in Hillsboro, Oregon is situated just outside of Portland. It provides excellent connectivity to the West Coast of the United States.

Where is DreamHost located?

DreamHost is a web hosting and cloud computing company founded in 1997. It is headquartered in Los Angeles, California, with data centers located in the United States.

Is DreamHost a good domain registrar?

When it comes to choosing a domain registrar, there are many factors to consider. Cost, customer service, and features are just a few of the things that can make or break a registrar. DreamHost is a well-known provider that offers a variety of plans at multiple price points.

But is DreamHost the right registrar for you? Customer reviews are mixed, but overall, DreamHost is a solid choice for those looking for an affordable, feature-rich registrar. One of the biggest advantages of DreamHost is its low prices; the company offers some of the most competitive rates in the industry.

In addition, DreamHost provides 24/7 customer ticket support and a user-friendly control panel. However, some users have complained about the quality of DreamHost’s customer service. Overall, DreamHost is a good choice for those on a budget who are looking for a feature-rich registrar.