It’s been a while since I switched over to Dreamhost for my hosting needs. I must say it’s been a very good experience so far. Though my experience with Media Temple was also good until I actually needed help from them. Alas, I don’t want to get on a tangent about my past problems with Media Temple but rather talk about how well Dreamhost has worked for me so far.
For starters all my cron jobs are running nicely and have been running without any problems since I set them up. Pretty sweet.
Next is communication. Dreamhost has a twitter account that updates when something is broken or upgraded or just a status update. It’s not overly useful to me but it says something about Dreamhost: they want their clients to know what’s going on. We all know stuff breaks and rather then making me call/email them to figure out why my site is broken they make it known what’s going on. Each tweet I’ve seen links over to the Dreamhost Status website that gives a more detailed explanation as to the current issue.
Support. Ahh yes. I’ve only put in one support ticket. Granted it was more of a question about how something worked rather then something being broken. But the support rep got back to me within one hour, gave me the answer and pointed me to the documentation I missed. I’m not sure I can express how awesome that is. Speedy and helpful!
The admin console is pretty easy to understand. Some of the things don’t make sense to me. For example: the mysql screens are under a section called “goodies”. Not a major issue but a little confusing if you aren’t expecting mysql to be a goodie.
The one issue I have with Dreamhost is the One-Click installer for WordPress. You have two options: the first being they manage the install, do upgrades and what have you, the other you manage it yourself, they’ll install it but after that you maintain it. I haven’t done the first option as of yet, but the second one is kinda annoying. Dreamhost seems to know what you will want when they install it for you.</scrcasm> They’ve seem to think installing 50+ themes and 5+ plugins with your WordPress install is a good idea. Well it’s not. So now when creating a new blog I have to go in and delete the themes just so I can make sense of things. It makes sense for the “they manage” option but if I’m going to be doing it, I’ll decide what I want, thanks.
Overall Dreamhost has done a good job of making me a happy customer. That on top of the discount I got from a friend is just awesome.
December 27, 2008
Dear Media Temple,
You’re trendy. You’re sleak and sometimes even sexy. And on the rare occasion your support is actually helpful. However for the past 2 weeks your support has sucked ass. Now I don’t mean just a little here and there. I mean big time. I even posted on Get Satisfaction because I wasn’t getting satisfaction with the service I was PAYING for, service that you claim is “Unrivaled”. You want “Unrivaled” support? Go check out USAA or Zappos.com. USAA has gotten some great awards under it’s belt. While Zappos has a rabid fan base of loyal customers. And when I say rabid I really mean it.
Sadly keeping your customers informed or even replying to support requests doesn’t seem to be on the top of your list. You claim that “In many ways you could say our main product is customer support. It’s what we work on the hardest. 90% of our staff is in some way dedicated to this process.” (source) I find this rather hard to believe as I have had a support ticket open since the Oct 15. It is now the 19th. And mind you this isn’t the first incident. I had another ticket open on Oct. 8th and wasn’t closed until the 13th. Quick turn around time there guys.
I’ve hosted with you for over a year now. I always thought you guys were pretty cool. Hosting the An Event Apart after parties. Being pretty cool to hang out with. But really taking 5 days to button up a ticket? That’s just shit. Before I even got a decent reply I had to post on Get Satisfaction. Way to take a pro-active approach to fixing client issues before I had no where else but to the public. I know how PR works. It seems you guys do also, because you were quick to give me 3 months credit on my account. But you pushed me a bit too far and gave me no recourse.
After that was settled, TWO DAYS later I once again had an issue. I hoped that I would get a quick reply seeing as how I was told my experience “is not the norm”. But alas… It appears that shitty service is the norm at Media Temple.
It really makes me wonder what other problems Media Temple has, since their “main product is customer support”.
I’m done with you. I’ve already moved my websites over to a server at Dreamhost.com. It was a pain in my ass to do that. I feel like billing you guys the 20 hours it took to complete. But I’d be happy just to get my money back.
I will never suggest, to anyone who asks about web hosting, that you guys are the way to go. I would though suggest if you want to feel like crap and get crappy customer support, that you guys are the best!
I feel dirty dealing with you,
October 19, 2008