DreamHost Testing New Rails Deployment

Apparently DreamHost have been beta testing Phusion Passenger – a new and interesting mod_rails deployment tool – and so involved in the development, that they are mentioned in the release notes.

According to their website, Phusion Passenger makes deployment of applications built on the Ruby on Rails web framework a breeze, because:

  • Deployment is only a matter of uploading application files. No Ruby on Rails-specific server configuration required.
  • Built on the industry standard Apache web server.
  • Zero maintenance. No port management, server process monitoring or stale file cleanup required. Errors are automatically recovered whenever possible.
  • Designed for performance, stability and security. Passenger should never crash Apache even in case of crashing Rails applications.
  • Well-documented, for both system administrators and developers.

I’m very happy to see DreamHost continue to be involved in the Ruby on Rails community. DreamHost was one of the first major host to support Rails, and even though Rails deployment has been a challenge for a lot of hosting companies, I definitely think this is a point were DreamHost has the chance to differentiate themselves from their competitors.

Currently I have no information about when mod_rails will be available on DreamHost servers. Please write a comment if you have any additional info.

Hat tip: Jamie

12 Responses to “DreamHost Testing New Rails Deployment”

  1. Tim says:

    Is anyone worried about DreamHost as much as I am?

    They had the huge financial hit when they accidentally overcharged and had to pay the transaction fee’s and loss of customers over the bad PR.

    Then all of this bad news over a major filer of theirs.

    Now they are defaulting people to using Gmail for email.

    I absolutely *love* DreamHost, though if you start connecting the dots – things don’t look good for them.

    Anyone else concerned?

  2. Pete Happy DreamHost Employee says:

    Tim, I wouldn’t be worried! The billing snafu was not pretty, but that’s what business loans are for! We’ve also recovered from worse filer snafus than Blingy.. just ask anyone who was with us for the summer of PAIN. The good news is that nobody here is sitting on their duffs. We’re constantly trying to find ways to provide better and more stable services at the same price point. Blingy was actually part of that, but ahh.. well, things did not go according to plan, as you saw.

    Defaulting to gmail: Oddly.. people actually seem to want this! I expressed the same concern as you did: It looks kinda weird, I thought, for a hosting company to recommend you use another company for your email (even if that “company” is a free service and not in competition with us, strictly speaking.) To be honest though, tons of people love the gmail interface a lot more than our webmail. They’re loving it. Who am I to argue with a win-win situation?

    Annnyhow.. Rails was a sore point for me personally. Having worked on the dreaded process killer program, we had to do a lot of fine tuning to keep it from decimating rails sites. It’s still a pretty gruesome sight, even now, but it has to be done to keep the web servers stable (and the majority of customers complaining.)

    Naturally, this didn’t leave me with a very good feeling because we advertise that we offer Rails! Many rails customers were left grumbling about the situation, but there wasn’t much to be done to remedy the situation… Until now!

    We really, really hope working with Passenger can produce a way for rails to run happily on shared web hosting so that we can merge the previously irreconcilable: Ruby on Rails that is well-behaved in a shared hosting environment.

    After we’ve had a chance to see how it does under live fire, I’m going to encourage Dallas to make a follow-up post about Rails hosting. His last one really fired some people up.

  3. Pete Happy DreamHost Employee says:

    I must be incredibly tired. That’s one of the most “said what I just said” series of sentences I’ve ever typed!

  4. Juan LupiĆ³n says:

    I for one will be very pleased to try mod_rails on Dreamhost. Installation on my Macbook was a breeze. I guess more testing is needed to try it on DH’s servers, though.

  5. Doug says:

    Nice addition DH.

    I hope the next “feature” you work on is lowering your Private Server prices to be inline with other VPS’ like Slicehost & Linode … since they are about 1/2 the cost of DreamhostPS.

    Keep up the good work !

  6. riki says:

    Hi Pete thanks for the update. I also really hope this works out.

  7. David Rivers says:

    Really hope you guys do implement mod_rails very soon so I can get cracking with it!

  8. Shawn R says:

    +1 for lowering DreamhostPS prices.

    Since at Amazon (EC2), you can get a VPS w/ 1.7GB of RAM for $72/mo and a 1.2GHz proc, the same at DreamhostPS would be $170/mo :(

    I love you guys but please lower your DreamhostPS prices to be inline with others.


  9. riki says:

    It’s now been listed on the suggestions page, but requires five credits to vote for it. Sounds like it’s not an easy feature to implement.

  10. Adam says:

    Hey Pete,

    Not sure if you are even following this thread anymore, but any chance of Django support from DreamHost? Or has the RoR experience left a bad taste in the mouths of DH admins?

  11. john says:

    I too would be ecstatic to see mod_rails. I mess around a lot with Rails and have been writing things for myself; Dreamhost PS is out of my price range for a site that is basically just for my art stuff and not a money generator. Trying to work with FastCGI is a nightmare so I can only imagine mod_rails will be an improvement.

    I just voted for mod_rails on the suggestions page (it only cost me 4 credits).

    If only their SQL servers weren’t insanely, almost unusably slow, then DH would be perfect!

  12. riki says:

    How do we go about installing this ourselves?