Table of Contents
1. Happy New Year!
2. The cgi change.
4. Dhsotm January '99.
Here it is.. the first official Dreamhost Newsletter of new year! So get out of bed,
shake off that hangover (still!?) and read it over a nice hot cup of Java. No pun intended!
Well, maybe a little.
1. Happy New Year!
Well, it is 1999. Only the first day and already it looks like it is shaping up to be a
great year for Dreamhost and all our wonderful clients! Get ready this year to be deluded
with countless Y2K articles and recaps of the decade/century/millennium. Also get ready
for sweeping changes in wireless hand-held devices (thanks to the Qualcomm pdQ), the
way web sites work (thanks to Mozilla.org's NGLayout rendering engine), as well as the
web hosting industry (thanks to yours truly!).
I think we're all pretty excited and optimistic around here about what the new year
will bring and we hope you are too! We also have made one New Year's Resolution which
I'm sure at least some of you will be very grateful to hear. We will make no changes that in
any way affect how you access Dreamhost's services without giving at least two weeks
notice via the Discussion Board and possibly a mass emailing.
We promise that none of our customers will be caught unaware when we make
some new improvement that requires a change on your end. (We'll do our best to minimize
these occurrences anyway!) Now let's move on to the rest of this month's
2. Cgi change.
The reason we've made this resolution, as I'm sure some of you have surmised, is
due to the overall poor way we handled our switching from cgi scripts running as nobody
to being run as the user themselves (i.e. enabling suexec). Believe it or not, there are
various good reasons for configuring our servers to run this way.. ease of set up for cgi
scripts and enhanced security against snoops on the same server as you being the primary
There were some unforeseen consequences to this action, however, which caused
a few problems for some of our users. Under this new system, it is a requirement that no
cgi scripts, OR THE DIRECTORY THEY RESIDE IN be writable by anyone other than
their owner. This means using the "chmod 755" command on all scripts and directories.
When we made the change, for a few hours we looked at the log file to see where errors
were now occurring and we chmoded them appropriately until we seemed to be getting no
more errors. So most of the more popular scripts were fixed by us, but we couldn't catch
Another change necessitated was the move of the Count.cgi script and
formmail.cgi to a central cgi server. This means that your link to Count.cgi must be
changed on your web site from just /cgi-bin/Count.cgi to
http://counter.dreamhost.com/cgi-bin/Count.cgi and that your formmail link must change
to http://formmail.dreamhost.com/cgi-bin/formmail.cgi . This was a bit of an unforeseen
effect of the integration of suexec and if we had realized that this big a change would have
had to be made, we would have definitely prepared everyone much better than we did.
Live and learn.
Well that's all pretty much ancient history for everybody now but we thought it
would be best if we explained it clearly to everyone. It won't happen again.
Things haven't moved as quickly as we had hoped in terms of new services this
month due to the holidays and some other issues (cough suexec cough). But! There has
been progress, and January will likely prove to be a month with a lot of great new features
popping up. Keep checking the web panel (and keep voting for Dreamhost on those links!
We really appreciate that!).
4. Dhsotm January '99
Duh duh duh DUN duh duh! The first Dreamhost Site of the Month award for
1999 is proudly provided to http://wooferxp.com/! Make sure you have your sound on as
well as a nice 4.0 browser to view this one! Still no nice logo to show you were awarded
the Dhsotm.. if someone would like to design one and email it to email@example.com
we'll give them a $50 account credit if we use it! Don't forget to submit your site to that
same address to get a chance at being the lucky one for February.. and thanks to all who
applied in December!
Just some reminders for everybody..
Don't forget the way to get tech support is through
http://scripts.dreamhost.com/support.cgi if your browser doesn't support SSL) Please
don't email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com with customer service
inquiries.. it just makes it a bear for us to keep requests organized so we can reply to them
all as quickly as possible.
Also a note.. it looks like there was some kind of problem with our replies to tech
support over the last few days and a few of you never received the responses we sent...
and understandably got mad at the lack of a response. We are working furiously to find
out why those emails never reached you and making sure it doesn't repeat.
Don't forget you can get a $50 credit to your account by sending us a suggestion
Don't forget to update your links to http://counter.dreamhost.com/cgi-
bin/Count.cgi and http://formmail.dreamhost.com/cgi-bin/formmail.cgi
See you next time and happy 1999!
Last updated: Jan 27, 2001.