Dreamhost PS Resources New Changes Confusion and Problem

by on March 21st, 2010

Recently Dreamhost made some changes in their PS resources. The customers who have Virtual Private Server resources can adjust the slider from their PS resources section to cop with heavy site usage issues. Previously they had the same stuff but with an indication of burstable resources. I mean if you slide your resources to any point, It would indicate that you have ‘this much’ extra burstable resources in case your site needs it. Now this feature is gone permanently. On asking their support they told that burstable resources are still there, its just they eliminated that indication so that users may not get confused. Previously my PS resources were showing me huge consumption and I had adjusted the slider a little higher. I noticed that the graph in PS resources section dropped at considerable amount. On asking the support they told me that they have adjusted their servers to handle memory usage in an even better way.

I moved the slider down according to the usage shown and my sites got ‘internal server error’ which you see in case of insufficient resources or memory. So I moved that slider to its position where it was earlier. Support recommended me this page to read. Linux Ate My RAM. They said that this will explain me about the changes they did. After reading that page I have come to a conclusion that there has been some swap memory which system needs. Their previous graph was showing the memory in use + swap memory which my sites were using. Now the server needs swap memory as well. Now their graphs are showing only the memory which my sites are using and not the swap memory which is actually being used. If you will move slider down according to their current usage graph, the site will show ‘internal server error’. I think if your PS resource graph is showing you 100mb, it means you need 1000mb memory and you need to place slider at 1000mb because you need swap memory too.

This is a new confusion for users.

Elimination of burstable resources indication.
Not showing swap memory usage which is also a part of site usage.

This new change is good for users though because they see what they are consuming and will be satisfied that they are using less memory but infact they will get a lot of ‘internal server errors’ by mistake of not considering ‘swap memory’ need.

Be careful where you put your PS resources slider, you need to move it a bit higher. I think now the current graph is not reliable and is not showing the exact usage of site. I hope there would be some guidance from Dreamhost for users to solve this issue.

Your thoughts?